Did You Know the Center of the World is Hiding in One Tiny Wisconsin Town?
Have you ever heard of Poniatowski, Wisconsin before? Yeah, me neither. This small town is located not too far from Wausau in Marathon County, and apparently, it's been hiding a fascinating secret for decades!
The Center of the World Hides in One Wisconsin Town
Perhaps using the word "hidden" isn't exactly correct. The plaque that marks the center of the Northern Hemisphere in Poniatowski, Wisconsin is accessible to the public, but you'll have to go on an adventure through a cornfield to find it.
So, now I'm sure you're wondering what technically qualifies as the Center of the World. Here's how it was explained by Only In Your State;
The 45×90 points, as they're called, are the four points on Earth which are halfway between the geographical poles, the equator, the Prime Meridian, and the 180th meridian.
The "45 x 90" point in Poniatowski, Wisconsin is one of 4 in the entire world, and the only one that is truly accessible. Two of the other points are located in the middle of oceans, and the third one is located in a mountain region of China that is super hard to get to.
Poniatowski's geographical point marks the "exact center of the Northern half of the Western Hemisphere", and the story behind how it got its official title is pretty interesting.
How Did Poniatowski, Wisconsin Receive Its 'Center of the World' Title?
Apparently, Poniatowski has a man named John Gesicki to thank for its official claim to fame.
According to Roadside America;
In 1969 John Gesicki, owner of Gesicki's Store and Tavern, petitioned the U.S. Geological Survey to mark the exact halfway spot between the Equator and the North Pole and between Greenwich Meridian and the International Date Line -- what GPS geeks refer to as a "confluence."
Gesicki then named Poniatowski "The Center of the Northwestern World" and established "The 45 x 90 Club" at his bar. This club, and the bar itself, were closed after Gesicki's death in 1995, but the survey marker still exists. You can find it inside a fenced piece of land surrounded by farm fields. If you need an actual address to put in your GPS to get you started, use 5651 Meridian Rd. Athens, Wisconsin. Happy adventuring!
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