Introduction to Waunakee, Wisconsin

Waunakee, Wisconsin, in Dane county, is 8 miles N of Madison, Wisconsin and 78 miles W of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The village is part of the Madison metropolitan statistical area. About 8,995 people live in Waunakee.

Waunakee History

Waunakee was founded in 1870 and incorporated in 1893. It was originally known as the Village of Leicester. The Chicago and Northwestern Railroad entered the area in 1870. The first post office was established in 1872. Most believe that Waunakee derived its name from an Indian term meaning "the fair and pleasant valley."

Waunakee and nearby Attractions

  • Governor Nelson State Park
  • Little A-Merrick- Amusement Park
  • Henry Vilas Zoo
  • Madison Museum of Contemporary Art
  • Yahara Heights County Park
  • Chazen Museum of Art

Things To Do In Waunakee

The Indian Lake County Park, the Yahara Heights County Park, the Lake Kegonsa State Park, Devils Lake State Park and Blue Mounds State Park are all accessible from Waunakee. Those interested in the area’s history should visit the Mount Horeb Mustard Museum, the Madison Children's Museum, the State Historical Museum of Wisconsin, the Circus World Museum and the Chazen Museum of Art. The Henry Vilas Zoo and the Little A-Merrick-Amusement Park are also nearby.

Waunakee Transportation

Dane County Regional Airport is nearby.

Waunakee Higher Education

Local colleges include the University of Wisconsin and the Madison Area Technical College.


Total Population 12,613
Male Share of the Population 49.3%
Female Share of the Population 50.7%
Senior Citizens 10.4%
Employed Population 16+ 6,794
Age of the Population 38


% of people married 64.3%
Average household size 3

Education and Earnings

Population % with Bachelor Degree or Higher 50.5%
Median Earnings25+ $49,916
Median Earnings Without High School Qualification $13,750
Median Earnings With High School Degree $37,036


Median Family Income $103,665
% Above Poverty Level 97%
% Below Poverty Level 3%

Commute & Sprawl

Average Commute Time 22 minutes
% Working from Home 5.3%
% Walking and Biking to Work 1.6%
% Using Public Transportation 0.4%


People Living Alone 18.3%
Median Gross Rent $1,002
Median House Value $300,200


Other(often includes Hispanic and African American) 10.9%
US/American 0.1%
English 7.9%
Irish 15.1%

Waunakee Almanac

Category Value
Nearest Medium City 8 miles N of Madison, Wisconsin (center to center)
Nearest Large City 78 miles W of Milwaukee, Wisconsin
County Dane
Metro Area Madison
Standard Zip Codes 53597
Phone Area Codes 608
Time Zone Central (-6 hours from GMT)
Daylight Savings The city observes Daylight Saving Time.
Latitude 43.191
Longitude -89.455

Waunakee Climate

Nearest Weather Stations


  • Temp ranges are avg daily min and max for the month
  • Precipitation is rainfall (and rainfall equiv of snowfall)

Distance 6.7 miles
Jan Temp 9 to 25 F
Apr Temp 35 to 57 F
Jul Temp 61 to 82 F
Oct Temp 39 to 60 F
Annual Precip 32.9 inches
Distance 8.8 miles
Jan Temp 6 to 24 F
Apr Temp 35 to 54 F
Jul Temp 60 to 81 F
Oct Temp 38 to 59 F
Annual Precip 33.4 inches
Distance 9.2 miles
Jan Temp 8 to 23 F
Apr Temp 36 to 55 F
Jul Temp 60 to 81 F
Oct Temp 40 to 59 F
Annual Precip 32.8 inches

Neighborhood and Nearby Area Names

According to the US Postal Service, Waunakee, its neighborhoods, and/or surrounding areas are also referred to as:

Westport (53597)

Note that not all alternate names are acceptable for use in US Post Office addresses.

Nearby Cities and Towns

Location Population Median Family Income
Dane 1,154 $80,357
Madison 239,848 $78,090
Maple Bluff 1,445 $175,875
Middleton 18,185 $83,026
Monona 7,711 $78,264
Shorewood Hills 1,783 $166,875

Waunakee Public Libraries

Waunakee Public Library
Waunakee, Wisconsin
(608) 849-4217
Library Web Site

library logo

More Information for Librarians

These schools offer particularly quick info upon request, and we have written detailed profiles for each (click school names to see the profiles). Request info from multiple schools, by clicking the Request Info links.
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Waunakee High Schools

Serves 951 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 14

Study Online in Waunakee
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Info for Waunakee Government Officials

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