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5/22/2015
With water recreation, golf, hiking, biking and skiing, the little resort town of Galena, Illinois, offers big outdoor fun during your active Midwest weekend getaway. 1) Eagle Ridge Resort and Spa Four championship courses and 63 scenic holes establish Eagle Ridge as a premiere place to tee off, but if golf’s not your thing, don’t worry. This expansive resort also... More
5/18/2015
Every state has roadside attractions—fanciful, often artsy, and definitely unusual items or places that catch your eye as you're driving by. Here in America's Dairyland, we've got plenty. (Surprisingly, no massive chunks of cheese are on the list.) Some are weird, others intriguing and a few are pretty darn interesting. In no particular order, here are some of my favorites.... More
5/15/2015
We’re catching the tail end of American Craft Beer Week (May 11-17), but there’s plenty of small-batch celebration on tap for the rest of the month in the Midwest.  Chicago Craft Beer Week (now through May 24) With more than 45 craft breweries in town, and many offering free samples, there’s no way you’d be able to experience the full slate... More
5/8/2015
Drive 50 miles southeast of Columbus and you’ll feel like you’ve entered another world—one of lush forests dotted with caves, gorges and waterfalls. Here are 7 activities families will enjoy. 1) Hocking Hills State Park Hike through fern-filled valleys and stop at sweeping overlooks as you explore some of the park’s more than 2,300 acres. For hands-on lessons about... More
5/5/2015
With cheap eats, a free art museum, spacious parks and vibrant historical areas, Omaha makes a fun and affordable Midwest weekend getaway. 1) Joslyn Art Museum Nebraska’s premiere art museum wows with gorgeous Art Deco architecture and an exterior of 38 kinds of marble from around the world. Inside, the 11,000-piece permanent collection includes Greek pottery, Impressionist... More
4/23/2015
In any of the Midwest’s most populous states, you’re probably within a weekend drive of a luxury hotel and spa. But residents of the upper Midwest—specifically the greater Chicago and Milwaukee areas—have a special backyard gem: Destination Kohler, the region’s highest-ranked getaway. Yes, Kohler, the folks who long ago defined the sinks, tile and showerheads that... More
4/20/2015
Confession: I went to the Flint Hills and dropped lit matches all across the prairie. The low, dry grasses caught fire, and boy, did they burn. Thanks to the Flames in the Flint Hills Festival, held each April on the Flying W Ranch outside Strong City, Kansas, more than 250 participants joined me in lighting up the prairie–with the blessing of the local ranchers. Josh, Gwen and Josie... More
4/13/2015
With the 2015 baseball season now in full swing (sorry!), it's time to ask yourself a question—where will you be watching the games this year? It's always exciting to catch a game at a Major League Baseball stadium, where you can sit in the fresh air and hear the crack of the bats and roar of the crowds. But it's even more enjoyable when the stadium offers fans more than seats... More
4/10/2015
Crafters, prepare to get your hands dirty, because Chicago has an array of unusual classes that can teach you a skill or get you started on a new hobby. Ever wanted to make your own shoes? How about design a terrarium? Or maybe assemble the perfect macaron? Whether you're visiting or you live in Chicago, here are some of the city's fun ways to learn something new.... More
4/6/2015
At 6:15 a.m., I’m one of only four people along the Door Trail in Badlands National Park. I venture off the boardwalk to find a spot to sit and wait for dawn. It feels hushed and almost sacred as the sky lightens and sun slips above the horizon, throwing a coppery glaze on the park’s spires, buttes and pinnacles. If I had to pick a top way to enjoy the park, it’s sunrise... More