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1/12/2016
As sunshine illuminates one of Jennifer Shea Hedberg’s ice globes, tiny threads radiate from the center like a silver sparkler and interior bubbles shimmer like mercury. But the real enchantment—especially for the Frozen generation—comes at night when candles or battery-operated lights make the globes glow. “The round dome looks like a moon,”... More
1/8/2016
Twenty-five feet of snow would seem like plenty for anybody. But as each spring approaches in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, Tasha Stielstra worries about it all disappearing too soon. For her and her family's 150 dogs at Nature's Kennel, a long winter means more runs through the forests around their home in McMillan. We chatted with Tasha about her love of dogs and the great outdoors... More
1/5/2016
If there’s one televised New Year’s event that we all notice along with the Times Square ball drop, it’s Pasadena, California’s, January 1 gala. For 127 years, the city’s extravaganza has successfully stuck to a simple mission: Show a winter-weary nation a better way. For Midwesterners, the day has special pull, thanks to the Rose Bowl’s Big 10... More
1/4/2016
Snow and holiday lights dazzled our Instagram fans in the weeks leading up to Christmas. The five most-liked photos of December: 1) A wintry scene in Sycamore, Illinois, by @bookbabym (https://www.instagram.com/p/_FsN_wmzco/).  2) "Winter wonderland" in Cushing, Minnesota, by @laceydobo (https://www.instagram.com/p/_PCwJumzbI/).  3) Rural sunrise near... More
12/29/2015
Summer Miller’s 2015 cookbook New Prairie Kitchen profiles 25 Midwest producers, farmers and chefs who give our region a starring role on America’s culinary stage. Summer uses the profiles as a launching point to showcase a variety of Midwestern specialties that we can make at home. Here are five of our favorite Midwest makers in the book. George and Emily Johnson | George... More
12/18/2015
This season, about 400,000 pieces of mail addressed to the North Pole get diverted to the southern Indiana town of Santa Claus. Local volunteer elves hustle to ensure every letter gets a response on behalf of Santa himself (after all, he is quite busy this time of year). A new book, Letters to Santa Claus, showcases a collection of these letters from the past nine decades. We picked one from... More
12/15/2015
In our November/December 2015 issue, we feature a knock-out shortbread recipe from Chicago pastry chef Mindy Segal's debut cookbook Cookie Love. At her restaurant, Mindy's Hot Chocolate, Mindy always serves cookie plates, deceptively casual assortments of crazy-creative cookies. She does things like roll homemade hot fudge into rugelach, or fold a bar snack like corn nuts into... More
12/11/2015
Dave Hoekstra knows food—soul food, to be exact. The former Chicago Sun-Times journalist traversed the country in search of the soul of his new book, The People’s Place: Soul Food Restaurants and Reminiscences from the Civil Rights Era to Today.  We asked Dave to dish his five favorite Midwest destinations that plate everything from catfish tofu to... More
12/8/2015
Some of Chicago’s finest bars live underground. Others sit high in the sky or hide in dark alleys. Here are seven of our favorite out-of-the-way places to imbibe, whether we’re looking for a post-work drink or a swanky date night. RM Champagne Salon Glittering lights in a secluded alley lead the way to RM Champagne Salon in the West Loop. Unwind on a... More
12/4/2015
The best time to visit Wisconsin's Door County? Don't be surprised to hear many visitors say, "Winter." Besides the obvious advantages—great deals on lodging and no summer crowds—the biggest rewards can be breathtaking new ways to experience the beauty of this peninsula that stretches 70 miles into Lake Michigan. Winter is perfect for a romantic... More