Metra board members voted unanimously recently against a fare increase for 2019, saying additional money for operations and new equipment should instead come from the state.
Board members also stressed that Metra needs to spell out to lawmakers exactly what service could be cut over the next few years if the commuter rail agency does not get the money it needs. Cuts could include entire lines.
"The truth is we’re going bankrupt," said Metra board member Don De Graff of south suburban Cook County.
The vote came after Metra staff at the agency’s monthly board meeting presented a preliminary budget that proposed a possible 25- to 50-cent fare hike for 2019. The commuter railroad has raised fares six times in the last seven years and has seen declines in ridership.
"A fare increase only puts a Band-Aid on a gaping wound," said board member Tim Baldermann of Will County. He said the state has "kicked the can down the road for decades" in terms of funding, and suggested the possibility that Metra may have to cut lines without adequate state help.
"We cannot solve our problems on the backs of our riders," said board member John Zediker of DuPage County.
The state has been without a capital bill since 2009. Last year, the CTA, Metra and Pace all decided to raise fares in response to state funding cuts. Sales tax revenues, which help fund public transit, have been down, in part because of sales on the Internet instead of in brick-and-mortar stores. The state also imposed a surcharge last year on the administration of sales taxes, which cut into agency budgets.
Metra staff proposed a preliminary 2019 operating budget of $828 million if there are no fare hikes, and a capital budget of about $211 million. The agency has said it needs $1 billion in capital funding to get into a state of good repair.
"That’s $800 million short. That’s no way to run a railroad," said board member Steve Messerli of Kane County.
Metra has been plagued this summer by delays brought on by breakdowns of air conditioning in cars, overcrowding and other problems. It also has had to pay about $400 million for positive train control — a federally mandated safety system.
In 2014, the Metra board approved a 10-year, $2.4 billion modernization plan that had called for fare increases every year to improve its rolling stock. But board members said on Wednesday that plan was passed with the optimism that the state would provide more money.
Metra CEO Jim Derwinski said he did not know what the service cuts could look like. He said the railroad will work on providing a new message to lawmakers and stakeholders, such as mayors of communities served by Metra.
"It could mean cutting service, it could mean less stations, it could mean less service during the day, it could be a period of time during the day. It could mean a whole line," Derwinski said, speaking to reporters. Derwinski also said he was going to Washington, D.C., on Thursday, despite the approach of Hurricane Florence, to talk to legislators about the importance of federal funding for transit.
Metra lines with the lowest annual ridership include the Heritage Corridor to Joliet, with 730,000 trips in 2017, and the North Central Service to Antioch, with 1.7 million trips, out of a total of 78.6 million trips for the whole system.
Metra board Chairman Norman Carlson acknowledged that the state, struggling with its own budget problems and trying to meet the needs of schools and social programs, may not have any more money to give.
"We may, and I underscore may, have to implement the service cuts. Do we want to? No," Carlson said.
Also Wednesday, professor Joseph Schwieterman, a transportation expert from DePaul University, presented a report to the board showing the economic value of Metra to the region. The report found that each Metra rider benefits nonriders every year by $4,699 through reducing congestion, crashes, roadway maintenance, parking needs and pollution.
The report found that 74 percent of Metra riders would switch to private vehicles if Metra service became unavailable.
Board members also praised Metra staff for keeping the service running safely and efficiently despite its need for more money. Metra is not facing the kinds of breakdowns seen on other commuter railroads, such as in New Jersey and New York.
"Among its peers, Metra has the best on-time performance, the lowest fares and the lowest operating costs," Carlson told the board.
Margaret Basch, an occasional Metra rider from Arlington Heights, said she wouldn’t mind higher fares if the service was better. "I feel like the train service has gotten worse in recent years," Basch said in an interview. She said when she goes to the opera, she has to build in an hour or two of extra time to account for train delays.
Check out the Groundhog Day celebration featured in the classic 1993 film of the same name starring Bill Murray. Attendees gather to see area groundhog Woodstock Willie leave his tree trunk home and predict if winter will stay or go. Should he see his shadow, winter will last for six more weeks, and if not, spring will arrive early. Or at least that's what the legend says.
Though February 2 is the official Groundhog Day Prognostication, Woodstock is holding a whole week's-worth of events leading up to Mardi Gras. Check the website for further details.
Ah, Valentine’s Day: When the pressure is, in fact, truly on. If you’re taken, you’re weighing whether to dish out at Chicago’s best fine dining. If you’re single, you’re probably out at your favorite bar trying to get laid. And if you’re somewhere in-between and don’t know whether you’re “doing” Valentine’s Day, well, best of luck. Regardless of your situation, we’ve got a slew of ideas to make celebrating this manufactured holiday one of your favorite things to do during the winter in Chicago. Or, at the very least, you’ll survive it.
Handmade Market Chicago returns to beloved Ukie Village club The Empty Bottle for an October–April market. More than 30 sellers will ply their homemade arts and crafts for this monthly celebration of the local and artisanal.
|Venue name:||Empty Bottle|
|Address:||1035 N Western Ave
|Cross street:||at Cortez St|
|Opening hours:||Mon–Wed 5pm–2am; Thu, Fri 3pm–2am; Sat noon–3am; Sun noon–2am|
|Transport:||Bus: 49, 66, 70.|
Stave off the winter blues inside the Chicago Botanic Garden's Regenstein Center, where the greenhouses and gallery will be packed with more than 10,000 in-bloom orchids, featuring an array of hybrids. On Saturday and Sundays, the Orchid Marketplace allows you an opportunity to purchase the plants.
|Venue name:||Chicago Botanic Garden|
|Address:||1000 Lake-Cook Rd
|Opening hours:||Daily 8am–sunset|
|Transport:||Train:Union Pacific N to Braeside.|
|Price:||$10, members $8, kids and seniors $8|
Back at it again - enjoy over 40 whiskeys & wines and treat yourself to a fun and unique experience as we take over the iconic Joe's Bar on Weed Street! Previously known as Whiskey Wine & Moonshine - new name, new place, even better experience!
Your ticket includes:
Admission to tasting event
Souvenir tasting glass
Tastings of 40+ whiskeys & wines
Entertainment & more!
Other beverages and great food from Joe's Bar will also be available for purchase.
It's your right to vote! Each guest will get to choose between their top two (2) wines & top two (2) whiskeys with your award tickets to see what brands come out on top!
*Featured brands at the event will be released closer to event date.
NO REFUNDS/FEE FOR TRANSFER
Sat, February 18, 2017
1:00 PM – 5:00 PM CST
940 West Weed Street
Chicago, IL 60622
Motorheads, here's your chance to check out what's new in the world of cars. At this annual showcase, close to 1,000 different vehicles will be on display, along with accessories, auto-related exhibits, competition vehicles and collector cars.
|Venue name:||McCormick Place|
|Address:||2301 S Lake Shore Dr
|Transport:||El stop: Green to Cermak-McCormick Place. Bus: 3. Train: Elec Main to McCormick Place.|
|Price:||$12, kids and seniors $6|
Saturday February 11 2017 - Monday February 20 2017
Bring your appetite for the 10th annual Chicago Restaurant Week and get an introduction into Chicago's extraordinary culinary scene. Enjoy top fare at value pricing at restaurants throughout the city and surrounding suburbs.
There are multiple cuisines to choose from and many neighborhoods to explore. Visit EatItUpChicago.com for the full list of participating restaurants and their special menu offerings.Please note that participating restaurants may not serve all meal options (brunch, lunch & dinner), so we suggest you browse your options in advance.
Photos: Nellcôte, Gemini Bistro, Prasino, Quartino
The 2017 Black Creativity program, an annual tradition at the Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago (MSI) kicks off on January 16 with a Family Day event, the annual Juried Art Exhibition and an Innovation Studio experience. The program, which is centered around Black History Month, invites students, teachers, families and the public to explore the legacy of rich contributions and achievements made by African Americans, while encouraging deeper interest in science and technology among youths.
The programming focuses on innovation, inspiring children to develop their creativity and become the inventors of tomorrow.
Join us for the Black Creativity Family Day on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, January 16, a free day for Illinois residents. Guests can participate in a collaborative art project, led by art educator Anayansi Ricketts. They can choose designs that represent science, technology and arts depicted in African culture that will be stamped onto one large group piece. This will be displayed in the Innovation Studio throughout the run of Black Creativity. Family Day also includes opportunities for students and families to meet and interact with STEM professionals in workshops called Jr. Science Cafés. The Juried Art Exhibition also opens to the public at noon on Family Day.
The Black Creativity Juried Art Exhibition opens January 16, 2017 and features more than 100 dynamic works - including paintings, sculpture and mixed-media - from African-American artists across the country, chosen by a panel of five jurors.
This longest-running exhibition of African-American art has been displayed annually at MSI since 1970. For the sixth year, a youth component offers opportunities for high school students to have their work shown in the exhibition. The Juried Art Exhibition is included in Museum Entry and is open through February 19, 2016.
From the exhibition, the panel selects first, second and third place overall show winners, as well as a winner in each medium category and overall in the youth category. The winners are recognized at a Juried Art Reception, held on Wednesday, February 15 from 6-8:30 p.m.
The Innovation Studio, which provides a creative space to inspire young inventors about future possibilities and opportunities in STEM, is another element of Black Creativity. Powered by guests' own curiosity and inspired by science-related challenges, guests will have access to a variety of materials and tools to create and prototype their solutions to issues in space travel, sleep and more. A gallery highlighting past and current African American innovators serves as inspiration.
The space will be open to the general public daily beginning January 21 through March 4; facilitated session times are offered at various times throughout the day. The Innovation Studio is included in Museum Entry.
Museum Hours: 9:30 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Family Day: January 16
Juried Art Exhibition: January 16 - February 19
Innovation Studio: January 21 – March 4
#2, #6, #10, #55, #X28
Hamilton is the story of America's Founding Father Alexander Hamilton, an immigrant from the West Indies who became George Washington's right-hand man during the Revolutionary War and was the new nation's first Treasury Secretary. Featuring a score that blends hip-hop, jazz, blues, rap, R&B, and Broadway, Hamilton is the story of America then, as told by America now.
Photo credit: Joan Marcus
There is a maximum purchase limit of 6 tickets per household.
A select number of premium seats will be available for all performances and some increased pricing during the holidays.
The Chicago production will conduct a day-of-show lottery for every performance beginning on Tuesday, September 27. Forty-four day-of-show tickets will be sold for every performance for $10 each. Seat locations vary per performance; some seats will be located in the front row and the boxes. Visit www.BroadwayInChicago.com/HamiltonLottery for available lottery performances.
Blue and Red Lines - Monroe
Orange, Green, Pink, Purple (rush) and Brown Lines - Adams/Wabash
#29, #62, #145, #146, #147, #151
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 13, 2017
BLUE MOUNTAIN LAKE, NY… Adirondack Experience, The Museum on Blue Mountain Lake (ADKX) is celebrating its 61st season with the new interactive exhibition exploring the spirit, history, culture, and people of the Adirondack region. Life in the Adirondacks is the largest permanent exhibition on ADKX’s stunning 121-acre campus. The immersive installation combines authentic objects from ADKX’s collections—including guide boats, vintage railway cars, and a aturalist’s cabin—and interpretative materials with leading-edge digital technologies and hands-on activities. ADKX is located in Adirondack Park, the largest protected natural area in the contiguous 48 states, comprising six million acres (one fifth of New York State) of forested mountains, pristine waterways, and 105 towns and villages.
The new 19,000-square-foot installation, featuring over 300 artifacts, was five years in the making with the help of experts in museum design. The rich history of the Adirondacks is revealed through the stories of people who were drawn to the region, how it shaped those who came, and how it was shaped by them. Voices from indigenous Abenaki and Mohawk communities are a key part of the narrative. The installation also explores the natural splendor of the area, conservation efforts, recreational opportunities, and regional industries.
“Life in the Adirondacks” continues ADKX’s proud tradition of our cutting-edge visitor engagement program established by the museum’s founder, Harold K. Hochschild, six decades ago,” said ADKX Executive Director David M. Kahn. “Just as we embraced modern devices available in the 1950s, the new installation provides visitors of all ages with the latest technologies and tools to enjoy a fully immersive, multi-faceted experience of the Adirondacks. Visitors may continue their indoor/outdoor journey ofdiscovery at our other thematic exhibitions, on nature walks, and by participating in our diversity of programs.”
Life in the Adirondacks begins with a video in the Wilderness Stories Theater, introducing visitors to the beauty of Adirondack Park and themes explored throughout the installation.
“Call of the Wilderness” presents the wide variety of individuals, past and present, who came to the Adirondacks including Verplanck Colvin, who oversaw the first reliable survey of the region in the 19th century; Theodore Roosevelt, who learned he’d become the 26th President while vacationing in the Park in 1901; conservationist and outdoorsman Clarence Petty; and American artist Frank Owen. Canoes, stage coaches, a train car, a station wagon, and snow mobile are on display and visitors may tour a private railroad station and Pullman car, with audio soundscapes, that once transported millionaires with L&N Railroad executives like August Belmont, Austin Carin, and Henry Walters. Visitors can also sit in a real guide boat, learn to row it, and virtually glide across an Adirondack lake. For the first time in the Museum’s history, the habitation of Mohawk and Abenaki people within the Adirondacks is explored. “A Peopled Wilderness” uses artifacts, video interviews, music, a language-learning station, and stories of contemporary indigenous people. This section was produced by ADKX in collaboration with the Akwesasne Cultural Center and the Abenaki Cultural Preservation Corporation.
One of the iconic features of the Adirondacks is the Great Camps built at the turn of the 20th century for wealthy urban vacationers looking for a wilderness experience but with modern comforts. “Roughing It” features the stories of those who instead came to settle or escape urban plagues like tuberculosis. The log cabin of Anne LaBastille, an author and naturalist who championed the pioneering life for women, is on display.
Using its expansive collection of artifacts related to outdoor work (including a snow roller, ice saw, and jam boat), the ADKX presents the stories of Adirondackers working in the wilderness in “Adirondack Tough.”
Among the occupations examined are historic underground iron mining and today’s open-pit garnet mining. An interactive activity allows visitors to virtually break up a log jam and understand first-hand how treacherous it was to be a lumberjack in the late 19th century. Work like maple sugaring and ice harvesting are also represented.
A section on the history of Adirondack Park features a giant walk-on map of the region. A multi-screened media experience gives voice to the many different perspectives of people who live, work, and visit the Adirondacks today including those employed in forest management, water quality, and protecting the natural environment.
For additional information, call 518-352-7311 or visit www.theADKX.org.
Distinguished Guests, including our Presidents and First Ladies, government officials, foreign dignitaries, and friends: Jeb, Neil, Marvin, Doro, and I, and our families, thank you all for being here.
I once heard it said of man that “The idea is to die young as late as possible.” (Laughter.)
At age 85, a favorite pastime of George H. W. Bush was firing up his boat, the Fidelity, and opening up the three-300 horsepower engines to fly – joyfully fly – across the Atlantic, with Secret Service boats straining to keep up.
At 90, George H. W. Bush parachuted out of an aircraft and landed on the grounds of St. Ann’s by the Sea in Kennebunkport, Maine – the church where his mom was married and where he’d worshipped often. Mother liked to say he chose the location just in case the chute didn’t open. (Laughter.)
In his 90’s, he took great delight when his closest pal, James A. Baker, smuggled a bottle of Grey Goose vodka into his hospital room. Apparently, it paired well with the steak Baker had delivered from Morton’s. (Laughter.)
To his very last days, Dad’s life was instructive. As he aged, he taught us how to grow old with dignity, humor, and kindness – and, when the Good Lord finally called, how to meet Him with courage and with joy in the promise of what lies ahead.
One reason Dad knew how to die young is that he almost did it – twice. When he was a teenager, a staph infection nearly took his life. A few years later he was alone in the Pacific on a life raft, praying that his rescuers would find him before the enemy did.
God answered those prayers. It turned out He had other plans for George H.W. Bush. For Dad’s part, I think those brushes with death made him cherish the gift of life. And he vowed to live every day to the fullest.
Dad was always busy – a man in constant motion – but never too busy to share his love of life with those around him. He taught us to love the outdoors. He loved watching dogs flush a covey. He loved landing the elusive striper. And once confined to a wheelchair, he seemed happiest sitting in his favorite perch on the back porch at Walker’s Point contemplating the majesty of the Atlantic. The horizons he saw were bright and hopeful. He was a genuinely optimistic man. And that optimism guided his children and made each of us believe that anything was possible.
He continually broadened his horizons with daring decisions. He was a patriot. After high school, he put college on hold and became a Navy fighter pilot as World War II broke out. Like many of his generation, he never talked about his service until his time as a public figure forced his hand. We learned of the attack on Chichi Jima, the mission completed, the shoot-down. We learned of the death of his crewmates, whom he thought about throughout his entire life. And we learned of his rescue.
And then, another audacious decision; he moved his young family from the comforts of the East Coast to Odessa, Texas. He and mom adjusted to their arid surroundings quickly. He was a tolerant man. After all, he was kind and neighborly to the women with whom he, mom and I shared a bathroom in our small duplex – even after he learned their profession – ladies of the night. (Laughter.)
Dad could relate to people from all walks of life. He was an empathetic man. He valued character over pedigree. And he was no cynic. He looked for the good in each person – and usually found it.
Dad taught us that public service is noble and necessary; that one can serve with integrity and hold true to the important values, like faith and family. He strongly believed that it was important to give back to the community and country in which one lived. He recognized that serving others enriched the giver’s soul. To us, his was the brightest of a thousand points of light.
In victory, he shared credit. When he lost, he shouldered the blame. He accepted that failure is part of living a full life, but taught us never to be defined by failure. He showed us how setbacks can strengthen.
None of his disappointments could compare with one of life’s greatest tragedies, the loss of a young child. Jeb and I were too young to remember the pain and agony he and mom felt when our three-year-old sister died. We only learned later that Dad, a man of quiet faith, prayed for her daily. He was sustained by the love of the Almighty and the real and enduring love of our mom. Dad always believed that one day he would hug his precious Robin again.
He loved to laugh, especially at himself. He could tease and needle, but never out of malice. He placed great value on a good joke. That’s why he chose Simpson to speak. (Laughter.) On email, he had a circle of friends with whom he shared or received the latest jokes. His grading system for the quality of the joke was classic George Bush. The rare 7s and 8s were considered huge winners – most of them off-color. (Laughter.)
George Bush knew how to be a true and loyal friend. He honored and nurtured his many friendships with his generous and giving soul. There exist thousands of handwritten notes encouraging, or sympathizing, or thanking his friends and acquaintances.
He had an enormous capacity to give of himself. Many a person would tell you that dad became a mentor and a father figure in their life. He listened and he consoled. He was their friend. I think of Don Rhodes, Taylor Blanton, Jim Nantz, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and perhaps the unlikeliest of all, the man who defeated him, Bill Clinton. My siblings and I refer to the guys in this group as “brothers from other mothers.” (Laughter.)
He taught us that a day was not meant to be wasted. He played golf at a legendary pace. I always wondered why he insisted on speed golf. He was a good golfer.
Well, here’s my conclusion: he played fast so that he could move on to the next event, to enjoy the rest of the day, to expend his enormous energy, to live it all. He was born with just two settings: full throttle, then sleep. (Laughter)
He taught us what it means to be a wonderful father, grandfather, and great grand-father. He was firm in his principles and supportive as we began to seek our own ways. He encouraged and comforted, but never steered. We tested his patience – I know I did (laughter) – but he always responded with the great gift of unconditional love.
Last Friday, when I was told he had minutes to live, I called him. The guy who answered the phone said, “I think he can hear you, but hasn’t say anything most of the day. I said, “Dad, I love you, and you’ve been a wonderful father.” And the last words he would ever say on earth were, “I love you, too.”
To us, he was close to perfect. But, not totally perfect. His short game was lousy. (Laughter.) He wasn’t exactly Fred Astaire on the dance floor. (Laughter.) The man couldn’t stomach vegetables, especially broccoli. (Laughter.) And by the way, he passed these genetic defects along to us. (Laughter.)
Finally, every day of his 73 years of marriage, Dad taught us all what it means to be a great husband. He married his sweetheart. He adored her. He laughed and cried with her. He was dedicated to her totally.
In his old age, dad enjoyed watching police show reruns, volume on high (laughter), all the while holding mom’s hand. After mom died, Dad was strong, but all he really wanted to do was to hold mom’s hand, again.
Of course, Dad taught me another special lesson. He showed me what it means to be a President who serves with integrity, leads with courage, and acts with love in his heart for the citizens of our country. When the history books are written, they will say that George H.W. Bush was a great President of the United States – a diplomat of unmatched skill, a Commander in Chief of formidable accomplishment, and a gentleman who executed the duties of his office with dignity and honor.
In his Inaugural Address, the 41st President of the United States said this: “We cannot hope only to leave our children a bigger car, a bigger bank account. We must hope to give them a sense of what it means to be a loyal friend, a loving parent, a citizen who leaves his home, his neighborhood and town better than he found it. What do we want the men and women who work with us to say when we are no longer there? That we were more driven to succeed than anyone around us? Or that we stopped to ask if a sick child had gotten better, and stayed a moment there to trade a word of friendship?”
Well, Dad – we’re going remember you for exactly that and so much more.
And we’re going to miss you. Your decency, sincerity, and kind soul will stay with us forever. So, through our tears, let us see the blessings of knowing and loving you — a great and noble man, and the best father a son or daughter could have.
And in our grief, let us smile knowing that Dad is hugging Robin and holding mom’s hand again.
Dear High School Parents:
It’s no secret that college is expensive. The cost of tuition alone can be discouraging. However, with the right tools, you can learn to unlock more financial aid and help your child afford even that dream school that today seems out of reach.
Where do you find those tools? That’s where we come in. My College Planning Team is offering FREE workshops in your area to help parents navigate the financial college planning process and reduce their student’s college costs. Our experts work with over 80 nonprofit venues in the Chicagoland area to help high school parents prepare financially and academically for college. Our one-of-a-kind workshops give parents the free tools they need to unlock greater opportunities and greater savings for their college-bound children.
We are coming to your area soon. Please visit My College Planning Team and Eventbrite to find a FREE college planning workshop near you today. You may reserve your seat either via Eventbrite or by contacting the venue directly.
If you have any questions about our workshops or the registration process, please let me know. In the meantime, our team looks forward to sharing their insights on cutting college costs at one of our upcoming workshops.
You can afford college. We’ll show you how.
Community Outreach Director
My College Planning Team
Sunlight reflects off the piercing blue waters of the Pawcatuck River. Prismatic droplets decorate the hull of the vessel as beads of sweat form against sun-dried skin. Waves crash against the sides of the boat, forming mounds of white foam. The fishing line tenses as the rod rattles. This could be the big one. Captain Dan O’Malley and crew prepare for the catch.
Angler Dan’s Offshore Adventures offers an exciting fishing experience for those looking for some time on the sea. Captain Dan has over 30 years’ experience in deep sea fishing, while First Mate Joe Bouthot taps into his two decades of fishing to assist both captain and adventurers, alike. Together, they are committed to creating a safe, enjoyable charter fishing adventure for all guests.
With three different charter packages to choose from, there’s something for everyone. The in-shore charter package takes fishermen up to twenty miles out from the shore for either four or eight hours, where the bluefish, summer flounder, striped bass, porgy, winter flounder, and blackfish are just some of the catches that await. He’s been doing this for a long time, and Captain Dan knows just where the sweet spots are located.
It wouldn’t be called Angler Dan’s Offshore Adventures if there wasn’t an offshore charter. Over ten to twelve hours, adventurers can fish up to sixty-five miles out, where the catches are some of nature’s oldest predators. From a variety of tuna to mahi mahi, the fish are big and the fight is strong. An adventure of this nature is a true test of an angler’s skills and determination, but with Angler Dan at the helm, the experience is unforgettable.
Makos, smooth hammerheads, threshers, and blue sharks are just a few of the sharks found about sixty-five miles offshore. Angler Dan participates in the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) Cooperative Shark Tagging Program, which is important to study the life of Atlantic sharks. Adventurous anglers can opt for a ten- to twelve-hour excursion to assist with implanting a dart tag near the shark’s first dorsal fin. One doesn’t spend as much time in the water as Angler Dan has without having a respect for the marine life. It’s through tagging programs such as the one Angler Dan’s Offshore Adventures provides that vital information such as stock identity, movement and migration, age and growth, mortality, and behavior of different species of sharks can be obtained.
Angler Dan also offers a young anglers summer program, which helps cultivate an early interest in charter fishing. Children ages ten and up learn not only different fishing techniques, but also important skills such as boating safety, sea life identification, and boat management. Captain Dan’s passion for fishing is ever apparent during his sessions with future fishing experts. From how to catch live bait to when to use which type of bait, Captain Dan’s got a lesson prepared.
At the end of the day, it’s about the adventure. Angler Dan and crew ensure every guest has a satisfactory experience from start to finish, whether it’s a four-hour trip or a twelve-hour tour. Fully licensed and insured, Angler Dan’s Offshore Adventures maintains the highest level of safety. Ready? The sea is calling.
By Cathy & Jesse Cromer
Fish the Sportfishing Capital of the World in Islamorada Florida aboard the Dog House, a 53' Hatteras with Captain Jesse Cromer down at Whale Harbor Marina located at Mile Marker 83.5 Oceanside. Captain Jesse will take you offshore for a day of Deep Sea Fishing to find Mahi-Mahi, Swordfish, Sailfish, Tuna, Cobia, Wahoo, Marlin, Snapper and more.
The 53' Hatteras Yacht is fully air-conditioned and comfortable with leather furniture in the salon featuring satellite radio, iced cooler for your beverages. Customers will also have access to the side-by-side refrigerator in the galley for convenience to store whatever snacks or sandwiches they bring on board.
Bait, tackle, rods and licenses are included. We filet and bag the catch.
Dog House Sportfishing Charters and Captain Jesse are recognized as Blue Star Fishing Guide in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. (To learn more please visit floridakeys.noaa.gov).
Dog House offers 1/2 day, 3/4 day and Full day offshore or reef.
Phone: (305) 393-0436
Photo credit: Katrina Wittcamp
Elizabeth A. Myers, BSN, RN and Wendy K. Benson, MBA, OTR/L of 2x2 Health and authors of The Confident Patient.
On average, a typical doctor’s appointment lasts less than 15 minutes. Making the most of that opportunity is critical. The Confident Patient, a new book written by Chicago-based authors Wendy K. Benson, MBA, OTR/L and Elizabeth A. Myers, BSN, RN, coaches patients and their families through the complex healthcare system by providing real life stories, sample questions and advice from medical professionals.
After years of experiences and interviews with medical teams across the country, Benson and Myers recognized a recurring theme: medical teams intuitively want to support their patients, but they don’t always feel they’re on the same page with their patients. Ranging from managing costly medications to finding trustworthy online resources to securing second opinions, The Confident Patient shares strategies and insights on ways to improve healthcare decision-making and outcomes.
“As a nurse, I saw patients who were extremely overwhelmed with managing their healthcare experience – knowing which medical personnel said what, remembering which medications to take and when, keeping up-to-date with doctor appointments, understanding what is going on and next steps, as well as communicating with loved ones…it all adds up. This is compounded by health complications, insurance coverage, confusing medical terms – it’s no wonder anxiety builds,” explains Myers. “Our goal is to share our experiences with patients and their families, so they find comfort in knowing they are not alone, and they are empowered to take control of their own healthcare journey.”
Research indicates that the connection patients build with their medical team directly correlates with the confidence they have in them, as well as the confidence they have in their own decision-making abilities.
The Confident Patient go-to guide includes concrete tips and take-aways such as:
“A few years ago, as I was working with a client and I asked him about the goal of his upcoming surgery that he and his surgeon had discussed. Unfortunately, the goals were either not discussed or the patient could not recall what the goals were,” recalls Benson. “So while the patient may have expected to return to his golf game within a matter of months, the surgeon could be primarily focused on pain relief with limited mobility. We realized at that point that there can be significant communication gaps between medical teams and their patients. And that’s where The Confident Patient steps in,” explains Benson.
Co-authors Wendy K. Benson (Chief Operating Officer) and Elizabeth A. Myers (Chief Executive Officer) are the leaders of 2x2 Health: Private Health Concierge in Chicago. 2x2 Health is a team of experienced healthcare professionals who fill the gaps by providing coordination of services, clinical companionship and recovery care for individuals and their families. With more than 40 years of combined clinical and leadership experience, they are dedicated to helping others improve their health and their quality of life. Together, they have built a comprehensive team that helps with everything from navigating a complex health issue to attending doctor appointments to assisting with a hospital discharge and transitioning home.
For more information about setting-up an interview or speaking event with Chicago-based authors Wendy K. Benson, MBA, OTR/L and Elizabeth A. Myers, BSN, RN, please contact: Katie Heraty at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Naperville Century Walk Board
Commitment Includes $10,000 from Republic Bank to Support Century Walk’s Mission
NAPERVILLE (Nov. 6, 2019) – The Halikias Family, which owns Republic Bank and Inter Continental Real Estate and Development (ICRED), announced they have deepened their civic partnership with Naperville Century Walk to include a $10,000 contribution to support the arts organization’s mission and will collaborate with it to build an arts district at CityGate West, a mixed-use development that will create a vibrant “live, work, play, stay “ community on Naperville’s north boundary
The joint announcement was made during a Nov. 6 celebration to mark the 25th anniversary of Century Walk at Republic Bank’s Naperville branch, 2720 111th St., Naperville.
The partnership between Century Walk and the Halikias family began more than a year ago and has grown to include the financial commitment announced at the anniversary reception. The financial resources will help Naperville Century Walk acquire art, create culturally significant and diverse public art, make it visual and tangible, and place it in the community.
A key element of the partnership is an agreement to feature art at CityGate West, which is located on the northwest corner of the I-88 and Route 59 intersection. CityGate West will include art installations from local and international artists displayed throughout the development that are curated by Century Walk, which will move its offices to CityGate West.
In addition to creating an arts district at CityGate West, the development will be an economic gateway to Naperville that will feature residential, commercial, hospitality, entertainment, and leisure assets, as well as enhanced accessibility to the Illinois Prairie Path.
“As a family-owned business,” said Aristotle Halikias, Chairman of Republic Bank and President of ICRED, “our business and community relationships are built with long-term goals and vision in mind.”
“Our support of Naperville Century Walk and our commitment to include it at CityGate West are perfect examples of the principles our company was built on when my family founded it in 1964. I’m very proud of our relationship and look forward continued success for all of us and Naperville,” said Halikias.
“We are deeply grateful for our relationship with the Halikias Family, Republic Bank and Inter Continental,” said Naperville Century Walk President Brand Bobosky. “Our partnership has grown rapidly and will be vitally important to our work for years to come. Expanding our footprint to CityGate West provides us with enormous opportunities that will benefit Naperville for generations and is exactly the kind of collaboration we envisioned.”
“Our relationship with Naperville Century Walk reflects our values and commitment to the communities where we live and work,” said Republic Bank Vice President and Branch Sales Manager Michael Thiel. “We recognize the importance of public art and how it improves quality of life in Naperville, and we are delighted to support Century Walk’s mission and growth for the next 25 years.”
Aberdeen was located by the Milwaukee Railroad in 1880, taking its name from Aberdeen, Scotland, the hometown of railroad president, Alexander Mitchell. Aberdeen soon became known as the “Hub City,” in recognition of the network rail lines that converged there.
If you want variety, then head to Aberdeen. It is a city that since its beginnings has flourished with a strong agricultural economy and has diversified into a manufacturing and service center.
Recreational opportunities for every season abound in Aberdeen. Aberdeen has an abundance of park and recreation areas for your enjoyment. Enjoy a round of golf at one of the three 18-hole, manicured golf courses in Aberdeen. Walk, bike or jog down one of the city’s many recreational trails.
Indoor activities abound in the fall and winter at area gymnasiums. Hockey and recreational skating can be enjoyed at the Holum Expo Indoor Rink. Swim indoors at the YMCA. Trap shooting enthusiasts will feel right at home in multifaceted Aberdeen Gun Club. Beautifully developed indoor and outdoor archery ranges are also available.
Mina and Richmond State Parks and Wylie Park all feature beautiful lakes and camping facilities. Whether you are a participant or spectator, you’ll enjoy boating, fishing, sailing and water-skiing. There are additional camping facilities at Melgaard Park and Brown County Fairgrounds.
Whether it’s waterfowl, upland game, big game or predators, the Aberdeen area has something for every hunter.
Wylie Park is a wonderful destination for the entire family. Wylie Park is 210 acres that features a multitude of outdoor adventures including camping, picnicking, swimming, and playground areas, miniature golf, go-karts, bumper boats, bike and surrey rentals, softball, volleyball, horseshoes and miles of recreational trails throughout the park. Storybook Land is sure to be a family favorite.
Walters Cove Resort is a luxurious fishing lodge, owned by the Kyuquot Checklesaht First Nations. Located in Canada, on the NW side of Vancouver Island in Kyuquot Sound, we provide a first class, all-inclusive fishing experience for salmon, halibut and bottom fish. Offering your choice of flying into the lodge from Vancouver, BC, driving in to Fair Harbour, BC or even bringing in your own boat, we can provide any of your transportation preferences!
Our small, intimate lodge holds a maximum capacity of only 18 guests which allows us to provide exceptional customer service and cultural experiences such as our signature Beach BBQ. Our Red Seal Certified Chef prepares incredible meals offering both meat and local seafood options prepared with fresh produce and the highest quality ingredients, sure to satisfy any palate!
Enjoy the most consistent salmon, halibut and bottom fish fishery on the West Coast while using top of the line fishing equipment (Abel and Avet reels) aboard large, luxury 23' ft. Grady White boats powered by well maintained, 300 HP Suzuki motors. Our boats are also equipped with onboard flush toilets for your comfort while spending the day on the water. Our local, experienced, certified guides have grown up fishing these waters and know where to take you for a safe and productive fishing experience!
Our Provincial Fish Processing license allows us to fillet your catch and cut them into meal sized portions, vacuum pack and freeze them within minutes of landing at the dock so you go home with the freshest, highest quality product possible that you can enjoy for months afterward.
With the exchange rate currently being so favorable, now is the time to join us as all of our packages, starting at $3195/person, are in Canadian dollars. For more info go to www.walterscoveresort.com or call us at 1.844.466.9453.
The Wellington Inn is a bed and breakfast located in downtown Traverse City. Built by one of Traverse City’s lumber barons, this spectacular neoclassical mansion has been fully restored to its original grandeur. The property features period antiques throughout the eight guest rooms and attached private baths as well as the rest of the property including, the dining room, living room, library and ballroom.
Walking through the doors of the Wellington Inn is like taking a step back in time. This historic home in the heart of downtown Traverse City has been a labor of love for the current owners who have gone to great lengths to preserve this beautiful piece of the past. In1999 Barb and Hank Rishel purchased the mansion. Following an extensive 4 year restoration, they opened the bed and breakfast in 2003 as Antiquities' Wellington Inn, the landmark Bed & Breakfast and downtown jewel it is today.
Each morning guests are treated to a sumptuous full breakfast in the turn-of-the-century dining room. Refreshments and snacks are always available in the guest kitchen located off the 3rd-floor adjacent the magnificent ballroom.
If planning an extended visit to Northern Michigan, the two 2-bedroom Carriage House apartments provide guests with a home away from home, allowing a leisurely multi-day exploration of Traverse City and the surrounding region. As Wellington Inn is situated in a unique downtown neighborhood in Traverse City it is within a short walk to fine restaurants, shops, recreational trails and the spectacular beaches of Grand Traverse Bay.
Perfect for small business retreats, Wellington Inn can accommodate with a very unique experience and all amenities needed. Please visit us online at www.wellingtoninn.com for more information about this historic landmark and to book your group or individual stay.”
(Fredericksburg, Texas) -- The National Museum of the Pacific War (NMPW), located in Fredericksburg, Texas, invites the community to join themselves, Admiral Nimitz Foundation and Texas Historical Commission in commemorating Memorial Day 2020 from their homes with a special day of virtual programming.
Following precautions recommended by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), state guidelines and the museum’s own guidelines, the annual public gathering in honor of Memorial Day will move from its traditional location in the Memorial Courtyard to the web. NMPW will not miss the opportunity to honor and remember those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country.
Programming will feature a brief welcome by Michael Hagee, retired General (US Marine Corp) and CEO of the Admiral Nimitz Foundation, a short keynote by president of Gold Star Mothers of Texas/Oklahoma, Cindy Martin, “Taps,” performed by Bill Smallwood, and a video montage.
This programming is free to access and will air at 10 a.m. on Monday, May 25. Details on how to access the program will be posted on the museum’s blog on or about May 22.
Lake Erie Walleye Fishing is some of the best Walleye Fishing you will ever experience. Day in and day out Eyes Ready Charters continues to bring in cooler fulls of these amazing game fish.
We are located at Fairport Harbor in the central basin of Lake Erie. The Central Basin of Lake Erie is known for it large quantity and limit catches of trophy Walleye.
A Lake Erie Walleye Fishing trip with Eyes Ready Charters is perfect for a family outing, corporate event or just a bunch of buddies getting together for a great fishing adventure. The Eyes Ready is a comfortable and safe boat with all the comforts of home. With an enclosed cabin you can always get out of the weather. Our galley has comfortable seating, a fully enclosed bathroom and plenty of room to stretch out.
Captain Joe Takacs is an experienced Charter Captain with over 20 years of fishing Lake Erie. He will work diligently to put fish in the cooler and make your day on the water a memorable one. Fishing with an experienced Captain puts you where the fish are. Eyes Ready Charters provides all the right tackle and bait to make your trip a successful one. A person can charter several times a year for a fraction of the cost of outfitting and maintaining a big-water boat.
Captain Joe takes emaculate care of the Eyes Ready and gets many complements on how clean it is and how well it is maintained. The Eyes Ready has all the latest electronics to help him find and keep on the fish along with navigational information.
The Fishing Equipment on the Eyes Ready is top of the line and is always in excellent operating condition. Captain Joe also carries with him backups on each trip just in case something happens to a rod or reel.
When it comes to fishing you can have the best equipment and fishing tackle in the world but unless you know how to use it you won't catch many fish. Captain Joe has been fishing all his life and has a 2nd nature when it comes to fishing. You will not find a harder working captain on the lake. He is also a very good teacher and enjoys showing kids and newer fishermen the ropes of fishing. To Captain Joe nothing is more fun than watching someone catch their first fish.
Walleye Fishing is very popular on Lake Erie so make sure you book your trip early. Walleye can be caught throughout the year but there are some times that seem to be a bit better than others.
Contact Eyes Ready Charters by calling 440-749-6150 or at www.eyesready.com
As of June 5th, 2020, ATA Lodge has been given a green light to open this season by the State of Alaska - albeit with all associated risks and challenges.
We have offered our guests the option to come as planned or reschedule given the potential threat of COVID19. Most have chosen to reschedule leaving weeks that were full two years in advance almost empty this season. This offers an unprecedented opportunity to come up this year for the intrepid angler who has assessed the risks and would still like to come.
Great King Salmon weeks open, Great Chum and Pink Salmon weeks open, Great Multi-Species weeks open, Great Silver Salmon weeks open, Great late season Trout weeks open.
We are only offering a maximum of 8 spots a week to allow for social distancing. The season will go through September 13th.
We are offering a COVID19 special "no risk" deal to try and fill all available empty spaces last minute.
As I have said, we are only offering a maximum of 8 spots a week, each week of the season through September 13.
I love the smaller more intimate weeks we rarely ever have during a normal season. The quality of fishing experience and overall Alaska experience will be unparalleled this year.
So what do we mean by "No Risk" special booking terms? Well, for THIS season only, on all NEW bookings ONLY after June 5, 2020 we are changing our booking policy as follows:
1) Any new booking will have a 100% return policy on deposits paid after June 6
2) The deposit required will be dropped to 25% (normally 50%).
3) Full payment of the balance will be due 2 weeks before travel (normally 60 days before travel). This balance payment will also be 100% refundable.
4) Or clients will have the option if they can’t come this season due to COVID19, to roll their booking over to any available week 2021 (although we can not guarantee that the same week will be available) at no extra cost of a penalty to them.
This special offer can NOT be applied to any existing booking or booking beyond the 2020 season.
Everyone will be required to acknowledge the special risks associated with travel this year and sign a special COVID19 waiver assuming responsibility for their decision to come to ATA Lodge.
We are prepared to offer discounts in some cases for some weeks depending upon availability or the size of the group wishing to come. Please email us at email@example.com to discuss what week you may be interested in and details related to your specific inquiry.
Please feel free to forward this special opportunity along to anyone you know who may be interested in this offer. We hope to see you up at ATA Lodge this season!
A 170 year old farmhouse set between rock walls, woods, and lake. The B &B is a highly informal and unhurried place ruled by the restorative rhythms of nature. Nearby Clary Lake offers opportunities for swimming, fishing, and bird watching. The setting is a journey into quiet countryside simplicity, away from tourist crowds, but convenient to coastal adventures. Children are welcome as well as dogs. Pets on leash at all times. Charge of $15.00 for pets per reservation. Antiques, galleries, and unique shops are located close by, and the innkeeper/custom woodworker will share his craft at onsite woodworking school.
Guest Rooms: Guest rooms are individually furnished with antiques. Local artists and craftsmen have gallery space near the guest rooms. A shared bath is available with upstairs rooms. There is an additional half bath as well. Handicap accessible room and private bath are available on the first floor. Pets accepted on lease only.
Morning Cuisine: Wake up to a Continental Breakfast at your leisure of fresh baked blueberry muffins, breads, fresh fruit, coffee, tea, and juice. Or choose a full Country Breakfast which includes options of omelets, wild Maine blueberry pancakes or waffles, eggs benedicts, crepes, or French toast along with fresh fruit, coffee, tea, and juice. Served between 8:00 Am and 9:00 AM
Wedding & Special Events: We will help you plan your wedding or special event on our grounds.
We're OPEN for Business!
Clary Lake Bed and Breakfast is having brisk business, so if you are planning to travel you might consider making reservations now. We are able to accept visitors from Vermont, New Hampshire, New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut without 14 day quarantine in Maine. Guests from other states will need to have 14 day quarantine or a negative COVID19 result within the 72 hours before travel. There are more and more testing sites in Maine but that still requires quarantine until you have your test results. Guests are asked to wear masks as they arrive and in the house except for eating. Please are able to social distance by eating on our courtyard or inside for breakfast. We want to let you know MAINE IS OPEN FOR TRAVEL. We still have over six weeks of summer and September and October are beautiful in Maine.
By Dawn Faught
Near Hitchcock, SD, thirteen miles from the original Ringnecked Pheasant release location in South Dakota, a country road edged by fields of standing corn leads to Pheasant Phun Lodge. The impressive 15,000 sq. ft. lodge overlooks hillsides waving with tall grass and a cerulean blue pond rimmed with cattails.
Some of owner Dave Olsen’s preserve is farmland where corn and soybeans provide ample food and shelter for birds and excellent hunting opportunities. Thick tangled sorghum is left standing for food and cover from often brutal South Dakota winters.
These practices provide perfect pheasant habitat proven by the ample numbers of iridescent birds strutting about doing their rooster squawk in the glow of the rising sun.
A catastrophic summer storm in 2013 caused extensive damage to their ranch. Grapefruit-sized hail pulverized everything in its path; shredding buildings and crops and killing pheasants and deer. Rather than admit defeat, Olsen built a grand new lodge with spacious suites and cozy rooms. Desiring an authentic South Dakota flavor, he incorporated wood from blue stained Black Hills pine throughout the interior. Relics of the historic 1903 Olsen Ranch add to the ambiance of the rustic interior. The bar, hewn out of reclaimed wood from the Olsen’s 100-year old hip roof barn, is stocked with top shelf liquor and is the perfect place to relax after a long day of pheasant hunting.
Pheasant hunting has been an Olsen family tradition at the Olsen’s OJ Bar Ranch for over 50 years. Dave’s earliest memories are of watching his father Art guide hunters, “Hunting is a celebration of life – it’s about the relationships, the land and the memories of time with my father.” Art passed away in 2017; but Anne, Dave’s mother, enjoys sharing the history of the ranch with guests along with overseeing the intricacies of lodge operations. Amy Crane is Olsen’s fiancé and Olsen asserts, “The person behind the magic - making the lodge and all that it is special for every guest.”
Olsen and his expert guides with well trained hunting dogs are there to make every excursion a pleasure. Catering to small groups, Pheasant Phun offers world class wild ringneck pheasant hunting. “Our attention to detail and commitment to creating a very personal experience puts us in the elite class of global wingshooting opportunities. We look forward to helping you plan your time in the field and customizing a perfect - and perfectly affordable - hunting package for your group.”
After a day of hunting in the fresh air, hungry and thirsty guests gather at the rustic bar to enjoy scrumptious appetizers and drinks. The air reverberates with laughter as stories are swapped, reliving everyone’s favorite moments and shots of the fine day. Soon all gather around the supper table and enjoy a wonderful feast of ribeye steaks grilled to perfection, fine wines with apple pie ala mode as desert.
Our ancestors arrived in Texas during the Texas Revolution in 1835, and some participated in the fight for freedom and the quest for making Texas larger than life. In 1901, William Wallace Whitley and his wife, Zoe Dixon Whitley, bought 1440 acres of raw ranch land in the Middle Verde Valley in Bandera County, just nine miles west of the small town of Bandera, Texas. The Whitleys, who had eight children, raised horses and Angora goats.
During the wake of the Depression, Whitley's daughter and son-in-law, Billie
and Dee Crowell, approached Whitley with the idea of starting a dude ranch business. He agreed to give it a try, so the Crowells left their careers in California, where Billie was an actress and Dee was a stunt man and traveled with their daughter, Darlene, back to Texas. The name Dixie Dude Ranch refers to their trek from California to “Dixieland.” Once the Crowells arrived, they worked with Whitley to make the ranch suitable for guests. They converted an old bunkhouse to living quarters, fired up a wood-burning stove for cooking and opened for business on July 3, 1937.
Student pilots stationed in San Antonio during World War II for training were among the first guests and contributed greatly to the success of the business during the early years. The young servicemen were in search of a home away from home, and they found it in the serenity of the Texas Hill Country ranch. For a dollar or two they could get a comfortable place to sleep, enjoy plenty of home-cooked food, ride horses during the day and dance to country music at night. Word spread of the ranch owners' warmth and hospitality, and the business was passed on from one generation to the next.
Today, seventh generation Texan, Clay Conoly—Billie and Dee Crowell's grandson—manages the ranch with his wife Diane and their two sons. Guests congregate in the community dining room for family-style meals, or gather in the spacious living room—called the Roundup Room—to read, watch television, dance to songs on the jukebox, chat or stretch out on one of the sofas. An antique piano parked against a side wall is available to any visitors inclined to tickle the ivories, and antique saddles from the Conoly family's collection are proudly displayed for those interested in touching a piece of Texas history.
Dixie Dude Ranch is still a working ranch, raising horses, longhorn cattle, Spanish/Boer goats, and cultivating its own hay for the stock. Experienced ranch hands work and maintain the horses. The ranch's staff includes cooks, front desk clerks, wranglers and housekeepers – all here to extend you and yours our famous Texas hospitality.
Bridger Visa Lodge is a 4 bed, 3 bath, luxury log cabin vacation home rental outside Bozeman, Montana, with a gorgeous view of the ski slopes at Bridger Bowl Ski Area. Far enough out to be quiet and private, but still a quick drive to Bozeman, the airport and all southwest Montana has to offer (including a day trip to Yellowstone Park).
Bridger Vista Lodge offers numerous amenities like a gourmet kitchen, WiFi, hot tub, satellite TV, cozy fireplace, nice linens and much more. This log cabin home is also a great place to social distance in comfort with online shopping and curbside pickup available for most retail stores including groceries and numerous great restaurants in Bozeman. The great outdoors is always open with endless places to hike, bike, fish or scenic drive nearby.
Whether you are planning a ski vacation, romantic getaway or a holiday with family and friends, this custom designed log cabin vacation home is a great place to enjoy the Montana mountains in comfort.
By Richard Moss
RiverBank Lodge is a 24-unit Boutique Hotel located in Historic Petersburg, IL. Visit our website at: www.riverbanklodge.com and/or Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/riverbanklodgepetersburg. Situated in a former bank building is unlike any typical repurposed bank. The architect that designed the building did not conform to the design norms of the day, which makes for a more interesting conversion from bank to hotel.
Our main area attraction is New Salem State Historic Park, where Abraham Lincoln spent seven formative years as a young adult. (He also did the original survey for Petersburg when it was founded.) We are 10 miles from the 14,000 acre Jim Edgar Panther Creek State Fish and Wildlife Park. JEPC features 3 well stocked lakes, miles of hiking trails, and plenty of beautiful nature scenes. Hunters come from many States to harvest the larger deer common to the area.
We are only 20 minutes from Downtown Springfield, where several other Lincoln attractions can be found. The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum, Illinois State Museum, Lincoln’s Home (which he lived in directly prior to becoming President), Lincoln’s Tomb, several War Memorials, and our State Capital are just a few of the attractions there.
Col. Benjamin F. Stephenson who founded the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR), a fraternal organization composed of veterans of the Civil War, is buried in a Petersburg cemetery. The GAR eventually became what we now refer to as the Veterans Administration. Dr. Stephenson was a Civil War surgeon, who had compassion for deceased and wounded Union Soldiers, the effects and misfortune of them and their families. Every April, Union Army Soldier descendants gather in full uniform paying tribute to Dr. Stephenson. They fire a cannon and give a 21-gun salute in his honor. The annual event lasts a few hours but we feel that it is an uplifting event worth the experience. The monument is funded and maintained by the Illinois Sons of the Union Veterans of the Civil War.
There are several wedding venues including wineries in Menard County hosting ceremonies and receptions. We often have the honor of housing out-of-town guests at our hotel. Since we have both lodging and a lounge with fantastic pizza, wedding guests usually like to top off the evening before drifting off to bed without needing to get behind the wheel.
Everyone is impacted by concerns over COVID-19. We practice all precautions recommended by the CDC, County Health Department and Governor Pritzker. This applies to our rooms, common areas, restaurant-lounge, and our video gaming area.
Petersburg has a quaint, attractive, and vibrant downtown surrounding the Menard County Courthouse. The city has approximately 2,200 residents. A similar number of residents reside just outside the city limits. We think you will enjoy visiting our local shops and restaurants.
We also sponsor a few tours to nearby unique attractions, such as Starhill Arboretum which is the largest oak arboretum in North American. Emiquon Preserve is a large natural area nearby, recently restored by the Nature Conservancy. The Tour guides of these places are renowned professionals who can give you intimate details of these places. These are located within minutes of RiverBank Lodge. Both tours start from Riverbank Lodge.
By Debra Zeigler
The unique location of Blueberry Fields B&B offers our guests a feeling of peace and tranquility that is unmatched. All of our guests are special, and we welcome you into our family!
Just off of the central coast of Maine, our B&B is nestled within the town of Washington, only minutes from Camden, Rockland and the state capital, Augusta! Hand-built, by the owners (Deb and Cyd Zeigler), the property stands firm and proud amidst rolling hills, and an 8-acre blueberry field. Within the grounds are trails that wind through the woods, across brooks, groves of sugar maples, and are well-traveled by our furry friends. The views and the experiences will create a bond between nature and you that will never be forgotten.
This Bed and Breakfast, with its five guest rooms, has been proudly operating since its completion in May of the year 2010. Using the post and beam construction technique, many have described the Inn to be warm and welcoming. Wood from the local Knotty Pines, frames the inside of the house and gracefully catches the eye of guests entering through the front door. Within each of the rooms you can find a TV, wireless internet and air-conditioning with a private access point to the outdoors. In addition to the 5 rooms in the main inn, there is a separate cottage on the property (also available for rent), just a short walk down the driveway from the main facility. Built in 1983, this rustic cottage can sleep up to 5 adults comfortably with amenities including satellite TV, air conditioning, a fully equipped kitchen and a screened-in porch.
Every morning, breakfast for guests is prepared and served between 8:00-9:00am and for the general public, Thursday-Sunday from 8:00-11:00am. As well as breakfast, guests may make reservations for dinner throughout their stay, and we offer a selection of beer, wine and spirits to pair with your meal.
This one-of-a-kind inn and its surrounding features provide a perfect venue for special events such as weddings or fundraisers. A stunning gazebo with porch swing is fit for a wedding alter and the vast grounds allow for quite the crowd to attend. Also, a sugar house where we produce our own Maine Maple Syrup (available for purchase) provides for an exciting new adventure. Spanning over the 120 acres there are many areas perfect for hiking, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. In 2018 we received the Customer Service Award from the Institute of Family-Owned Business and more recently we were featured on the new Tru TV reality show, “Tirdy Works.”
When it comes to winter getaways, it's all about destination! Florida, the snowbird state, doesn’t have to be expensive or trendy. Try visiting natural Florida on the Big Bend Coast. Steinhatchee, located on the West Coast, has a very active winter fishing and hunting season, gorgeous hiking and kayaking/canoeing trails, all loaded with old Florida history and plenty of sunshine. The Steinhatchee Landing Resort offers a warm escape from snow and ice, whether for a quick getaway or for an extended stay. Situated on 35 lush, scenic acres, just 5 minutes from the Gulf of Mexico, Steinhatchee Landing Resort is an idyllic escape for nature lovers, enthusiastic anglers and anyone looking for an unexpectedly upscale yet laidback vacation from the ordinary. For a one-of-a-kind Old Florida experience at its best, Steinhatchee Landing Resort is the ideal choice.
We invite you to come enjoy our magical sunsets, warm sunshine, and cozy cabins. https://steinhatcheelanding.com/
As Americans are managing life with the Coronavirus, the travel industry is continuing to come back. Hotels and travel destinations in many parts of the country are open in anticipation of travelers ready to throw off their cabin fever and venture out.
Your plans may be for a weekend get away to a cozy bed and breakfast, or perhaps a fishing trip to catch that “big one” that won’t get away this time. Maybe it’s a camping trip full of hiking adventures with stunning vistas, or possibly you would rather walk through America’s glorious past by taking in all the amenities offered in any of hundreds of museums? How about a week’s stay at a ranch out west? Whatever your travel desires are, your options are plentiful and, more importantly, clean, safe and following all CDC guidelines for Coronavirus.
Each week we will list state by state travel options we recommend to help make your vacation choices easy.
Mobile Marriott – Mobile.
Creekside Lodge – Dadeville.
Fish Trap Charters – Orange Beach in the Gulf of Mexico.
Oceanside RV Park – Haines.
Alaska Back Country Adventures – Palmer.
Almost Home Vacation Rentals – Ketchikan. Long term accommodations for hospital and medical staff as well as military personnel.
Distant Drums RV Resort – Camp Verde.
Dreamers RV Park – Salome.
El Primero Boutique Hotel – Chula Vista.
Navy Lodge – New London.
Anchor Inn Bed & Breakfast – New Smyrna Beach.
Ramada Inn – Temple Terrace – Tampa.
Hampton Inn & Suites - Historic Harbor Front – Fernandina Beach.
Comfort Inn – Acworth.
Bear Branch Horse Camp – Eddyville in the Shawnee National Forest.
Rooster Heaven Hunt Club – Forrest. 90 minutes southwest of Chicago.
Inn of the Six-Toed Cat –Allerton.
Hotel Greenfield – Greenfield.
Elizabethtown Crossroads Campground – Elizabethtown.
City of Opelousas Tourism – Opelousas.
Woolen Lake Campground – Columbia. 318.649.8330
Terrell House – New Orleans.
Old Fort Western – Augusta. Living History Museum.
Captain Peter Drummond – Kittery Point. Fishing Charters. 207.752.6162
Bugsy’s on Bostic – Baudette. Cabins, fishing, restaurant, boat rental.
Veterans Memorial Museum – Branson.
Best Western Branson Inn – Branson.
Clarion Hotel – Branson.
Titanic Museum – Branson.
Eminence Cottages & Camp – Eminence.
Bridger Vista – Bozeman. Year round luxury rental.
Enders Lake Golf Course and RV Park – Enders.
Liberty Harbor Marina & RV Park – Jersey City.
Ghost Ranch Education & Retreat Center – Abiquiu.
The Historic El Fidel Hotel – Las Vegas.
Kokosing River Outfitters – Howard.
Singing Springs Resort – Agness.
Harrisburg East Campground – Harrisburg.
The National Civil War Museum – Harrisburg.
Potters County Family Campground – Coudersport. Camping, Cabins, ATV Camping.
Extreme Pheasants – Wessington Springs.
Pine Mountain RV Park – Pigeon Forge.
Mountain Lake Ranch Christian Retreat – Danridge.
Navy Lodge – Memphis.
Titanic Museum – Pigeon Forge.
American GI Museum – College Station.
1st Calvary Division Museum – Fort Hood.
National Border Patrol Museum – El Paso.
The Peaceful Pelican – Palacios.
Brownsville Historical Association – Brownsville.
Hood County Museum – Granbury.
Old Moe Guide Service – Dutch John. Fishing guides.
The Lodge at Red River Ranch – Teasdale.
West Hill House Bed and Breakfast – Warren.
Carlyle House Historic Park – Alexandria.
Quail Hollow Hunts – Berkeley Springs.
New Glarus Hotel – New Glarus.
Chippewa Retreat Resort – Manitowish Waters.
Military Veterans Museum – Oshkosh.
Wisconsin Maritime Museum – Manitowoc.
When you are ready to travel, we are here to help! Keep checking back every week for more featured locations. Our travel hosts are eager to see you and work with you to provide safe and clean facilities.