Having visited Hendricks County several times over the past few years, I’ve noticed how different the various areas of the county are. Within minutes you can drive from a city-like atmosphere to a rural setting, and each area offers its own brand of adventure, culture and fun.
One of my favorite things about my job as a travel writer is learning about a myriad of subjects. Therefore, when I was invited to Webster City, Iowa, to learn about their agricultural community, I jumped at the chance. My husband and I joined several other bloggers and their guests for three days. We not only learned about agriculture and the rural lifestyle in this community, but had a lot of fun, too. Read more
Barbecue is one of my favorite foods, really good barbecue, that is. The pork, beef or chicken has to be smoked slowly for hours over hickory, mesquite or other wood that adds a smoky flavor. The smoked meat must be juicy, not dry. I have found some great barbecue restaurants in the South, but they are a rare find north of the Mason-Dixon Line and east of the Mississippi River. So I was thrilled when we discovered Pit Stop Barbecue and Grill in Brownsburg, Indiana. Read more
I can’t tell you how many times we’ve had a short time in a city and wished we could stay longer. Fargo, North Dakota, is one of those cities. We had a week to explore North Dakota, and a single day in Fargo was our starting point. Read more
I ate breakfast at the Bread Basket Café & Bakery in Danville, Indiana, three years ago and loved their fresh spin on the meal. So when I was heading to Danville again this year for the third annual Mayberry in the Midwest Festival, I wanted to be sure to eat there again. This visit, however, wasn’t for a meal, but rather for dessert, to kick off my quest to complete the Hoosier Pie Trail. Read more
Last month we took a road trip, zig-zagging across North Dakota east to west. We started our trip at the Fargo-Moorhead Visitors Center and ended in Medora. I have a lot to write about North Dakota all across the state, but I’m jumping now to the westernmost point of our trip. The Medora Musical and Pitchfork Steak Fondue was a true grand finale to our road trip. Read more
I went to my first state fair in 2015. I had been to county fairs many times but had never gotten around to going to the larger Illinois State Fair—or for that matter, any other state fair. I knew the gist of what to expect—farm animals, carnival rides, entertainment and such. What surprised me was the size of the fair. There was so much to see and do. We spent two days at the fair and didn’t get a chance to see everything. Here is a list of 25 things to do at the Illinois State Fair, and it is not all-encompassing. Read more
When devastation strikes, it’s difficult to imagine good coming from it, but that’s what happened in the Cedar Rapids, Iowa, New Bohemia neighborhood, referred to as NewBo, following the great Cedar River flood of 2008. Most buildings in the already declining New Bohemia neighborhood filled eight feet or more with floodwaters. Sadly, some historic buildings were torn down rather than repaired. However, with federal and state funds, as well as insurance money, a building resurgence occurred. Today NewBo is booming with new shops, restaurants, and pubs.
I grew up in Illinois just over the border from Northwest Indiana. Although I no longer live in that immediate area, I have lots of friends and family who do. Over the years I’ve heard talk about Pierogi Fest in Whiting, Indiana. I assumed it was just a small-town festival, no big deal—until I went to Pierogi Fest last year. What a hoot! Read more
The Mississippi River, the third-largest watershed in the world, flows over 2,300 miles through the United States, from Lake Itasca in Minnesota south into the Gulf of Mexico. Traveling the Great River Road Scenic Byway, which follows the course of the river, is on my bucket list. However, lacking the time to do it “right,” seeing everything there is to see along the byway in one trip, I am doing it piecemeal. During a recent travel bloggers conference, TBEX, which was held in Minnesota at the Mall of America, we had an opportunity to explore part of Minnesota’s portion of the Great River Road, from Kellogg to Red Wing. Read more