Arbor Vitae is located in Vilas County, Wisconsin, United States. Nestled in the deep north woods, Arbor Vitae is surrounded by hundreds of the country’s greatest lakes. With a population of approximately 3,300, the town’s population swells to nearly 10,000 during the summer months as vacationers from other states seek the beautiful outdoors of northern Wisconsin.

The town of Arbor Vitae has a rich logging history dating back to the early 1800’s. More than 80% of the land area in and around Arbor Vitae is state owned and resources are strictly managed. Controlled logging still occurs today.
More than 150 years of logging have left many excellent trails for hiking and exploring in the Arbor Vitae area.

Your address is ARBOR VITAE, Wisconsin 54568, VILAS County. Arbor Vitae has a shared zip code with Woodruff. The post office is in the town of Woodruff, Oneida County on Hwy 47. Please use your address followed by ARBOR VITAE not Woodruff. If you do not use Arbor Vitae as your town, your tax dollars are going to the wrong community and the wrong county. Education is key!

Arbor Vitae does have a brush site. It is located where the old dump was on Schuman Road, off of North Farming Road and Hwy 51. The site is open every weekend in the Spring and Fall and every other weekend during the Summer to accept brush, leaves, and pine needles. (Fridays and Saturdays 8-4, Sundays 8-12 noon).  Branches not more than 3″ in diameter will be accepted.  A permit is needed and is available at the town office.  A new permit is not necessary each year.  We will also accept recycling.  We have a bin for glass, plastic, tin, and aluminum and another for paper and cardboard.  See our yearly calendar HERE, and any recent posts under our ANNOUNCEMENTS section.

The town has adopted the Wisconsin Uniform Dwelling Code and we have our own building inspector. If you have plans for construction, you will need a building permit first from the town and second from Vilas County Zoning. If you are building on an empty parcel, you need to first apply for a driveway permit with the town. The building inspector is available on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. at his new office – located at 8735 Highway 47 E.  You must travel to Eagle River to obtain county permits.  Any questions you might have prior to building should be directed to the building inspector, Rick Clem, at RC Inspection Agency at 715.439.4222 (office) or 715.892.2056 (cell), or you can contact the town hall at 715.356.3120.

Requirements for obtaining a building permit for a GARAGE

    Note: You MUST secure the Arbor Vitae town permit prior to County permits.

  1. Application for private driveway with Town of Arbor Vitae.
  2. UDC (town) building permit.
  3. County zoning permit.
  4. One copy of plans in 1/8″ scale… basic drawing showing dimensions of garage, overall height, wall and floor thickness. 
  5. All forms completely filled out and signed. 
  6. A map showing how to get to the site location.

Requirements for obtaining a building permit for NEW DWELLINGS/ADDITIONS

    You MUST secure the Arbor Vitae town permit prior to County permits.

  1. Application for private driveway with Town of Arbor Vitae.
  2. Sanitary permit.
  3. UDC (town) building permit.
  4. County zoning permit.
  5. A copy of the sanitary permit will be required to determine slope of the property for erosion plan.  THIS SHOULD INCLUDE A COMPLETE SITE PLAN.
  6. One copy of plans in 1/4″ or 1/8″ scale showing the following:  (A) Foundation plan with all specifications. (B) Floor plans which show all rooms. (C) Exterior Elevation drawings (front and sides).  (D) Cross section showing all structural components. (E) Wall bracing must be shown on plans.
  7. A complete energy compliance worksheet RES Check.
  8. Erosion control plan.
  9. All forms completely filled out and signed.
  10. A map showing how to get to the building site location.

For more information, visit RC Inspection Agency’s website HERE.

The State of Wisconsin requires that all dogs be licensed each year. The deadline for licensing is March 31st. The cost is $5.00 for spayed and neutered dogs; otherwise it is $10.00. A $5.00 late fee is charged if not licensed by the due date. All dogs five months and older must be licensed. Licenses are available at the town hall.  You must supply us with your vet’s information regarding current rabies status including the manufacturer’s name and serial number, and the date of the vaccination.  

Arbor Vitae is divided into seven wards and four supervisory districts for County elections. Town board seats are at large. The polling place for all elections and all wards is the town hall in the community room.

The town has a volunteer fire department with 50 members. The fire chief is Mike VanMeter. If you have a fire emergency, dial 911. The fire department has an annual fund raiser called Summerfest at the Fireman’s Park near the town hall. This annual event has paid for the equipment used by the fire department. The fire department is proud to have raised enough money at this event for purchasing trucks so they are not reflected on your tax bill. This is a fun event that you should mark on your calendar. It is always the first weekend in August. Attend and help support our fire department. Visit the Arbor Vitae Fire & Rescue Home Page HERE.

The town does not have its own library. There is a library in Minocqua or in Eagle River that can be used at no cost. However, any Vilas County library may also be used at no cost. Minocqua Public Library Home Page HERE. Eagle River Public Library Home Page HERE.

Arbor Vitae does not have its own police department. The Vilas County Sheriff’s Department patrols and responds to our calls. If you need help and it’s an emergency, dial 911. All non-emergency calls please dial 715.479.4441. Visit the Vilas County Sheriff’s Home Page HERE.

Your tax bill is mailed to you before the second week of December. The first half payment is due January 31st and paid to the Town Treasurer. The second half is due July 31st and is paid to Vilas County Treasurer. A reminder notice is mailed to you. You can also pay your taxes in full if you care to do so. Personal Property tax is due in full by January 31st. If you do not receive a tax bill, please call the town office. It is your responsibility to call if you do not receive a bill.

Advanced Recycling offers a recycling drop off center if you do not have a private hauler. They accept aluminum, plastics, glass, magazines, steel cans, newspaper, corrugated paper and office paper. There is a charge per bag for garbage. Garbage must be placed in a Vilas County container. Advanced Recycling is located on Hwy J off of Hwy 47. Visit the Advanced Home Page HERE.

Anything that is not recyclable is taken to the Hwy G landfill out of Sayner. This includes construction materials, appliances, mattresses, furniture, tires, batteries, etc. They charge by the weight.

If you should need an ambulance, dial 911. The Oneida County Ambulance at Ascension (previously Howard Young Medical Center) will respond. The fire department also has a First Responder team, which was established for responding to calls since 1997. Visit the Arbor Vitae Fire & Rescue Home Page HERE.

Our town has five board members. The board meets on the third Wednesday of each month at 6:30pm in the town hall. The meetings are open to the public. The following is a list of board members and officers.

Position Name Phone Number Email
Town Chairman Frank Bauers 715.356.6820
Supervisor Jeffrey Hunter 715.356.2794
Supervisor Brian Nerdahl 715.892.1300
Supervisor Barb Freudigmann 715.614.2116
Ashley Roach 715.892.6225
Town Clerk
Mary Reuland 715.356.3120
Town Treasurer Melody Gillespie 715.356.3120
Animal Control Al Spatz 715.356.3042  

You can register to vote at the town hall. You will need a photo ID for proof of identity, and proof of residency with your physical address on it such as a driver’s license or utility bill. You can also register on the day of the election.