Middlefork Savanna Nature Preserve: Great Blooms, Biking, Hiking, and Nature Experiences

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER & AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND How lucky we are to have such natural places as Middlefork Savanna Nature Preserve, where the saw-toothed sun flowers grow tall as fairytale giants (OK, maybe not that tall), the plentiful asters prettily mark the end of wildflower season, and the birds seem to sing … Continue reading Middlefork Savanna Nature Preserve: Great Blooms, Biking, Hiking, and Nature Experiences

Birding Blogger and Filmmaker Releases “The Magic Stump”—a Must-See Documentary

I recently watched Bob Dolgan’s nature documentary “The Magic Stump,” and it’s a beautiful and thoughtful meditation on the love of birding, the friendships it helps to deepen, and the lives of Prairie Falcons and other birds. It reminds us that birding is the perfect alternative to our fast-paced, immediate gratification society that seems to … Continue reading Birding Blogger and Filmmaker Releases “The Magic Stump”—a Must-See Documentary

Illinois Beach State Park: Beautiful Dune, Lake, and River Views; Hiking; Biking; Camping; and Other Great Outdoor Recreational Activities

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER & AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND There are only 63 miles of Lake Michigan shoreline in Illinois (as opposed to 3,288 miles in Michigan), and much of this land has been developed as part of city lakefronts, heavy industry, and private beachfront property. That’s why Illinois Beach State Park (1 Lake … Continue reading Illinois Beach State Park: Beautiful Dune, Lake, and River Views; Hiking; Biking; Camping; and Other Great Outdoor Recreational Activities

Remembering David Fode

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER & AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND Dave (right) and I at his wedding. I still don’t believe it. I might never believe that one of my best friends is gone. I loved Dave like a brother and always will. I met Dave almost 40 years ago as a high school freshman … Continue reading Remembering David Fode

Bluff Spring Fen: A Fen-tastic Nature Experience in Far Western Cook County

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER & AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND If you only read one sentence of this entire story, it should be this one: Bluff Spring Fen Nature Preserve is an amazing place that is at the height of its summertime wildflower show, and you should visit today, tomorrow, or very soon to see … Continue reading Bluff Spring Fen: A Fen-tastic Nature Experience in Far Western Cook County

The Flight 93 National Memorial Commemorates Bravery and a Momentous Time in U.S. History   

I’m taking a break from spotlighting nature destinations to write about my family’s visit last month to the Flight 93 National Memorial in southeastern Pennsylvania. Actually, this post barely mentions my family, but rather focuses on the events of the day and the brave passengers and crew of Flight 93. The story of Flight 93 … Continue reading The Flight 93 National Memorial Commemorates Bravery and a Momentous Time in U.S. History   

Art Exhibition Celebrates the Natural Beauty and Rebirth of Chicago’s Industrial Southeast Side

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER AND AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND If you hike or paddle in the right natural spot in Chicagoland, it’s almost as if you’re not in one of the largest metropolitan areas in the United States. There are peaceful and verdant prairies filled with prairie blazing star, black-eyed Susan, compass plant, rattlesnake … Continue reading Art Exhibition Celebrates the Natural Beauty and Rebirth of Chicago’s Industrial Southeast Side

Earth Day Essay Collection is a Great Read Any Time of the Year

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER AND AUTHOR OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND I was intrigued when I received a press release about David C. Mahood’s new book, Kings of a Lonely Kingdom: Earth Day Essays, Poems, and Musings on Nature (ISBN 978-0-9994876-2-4, 2021, 208 pages, $19, plus shipping). For 10 years on Earth Day, Mahood—a sustainability consultant, … Continue reading Earth Day Essay Collection is a Great Read Any Time of the Year

6 Great Products That Will Make Your Outdoor Life Easier

BY ANDREW MORKES, AUTHOR AND FOUNDER OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND UPDATED 8/18/22 How do you vanquish flies before your next barbeque or campout? How do you quickly start a fire when camping or hanging out in your backyard? Which on-the-go steeped coffee doesn’t taste stale and lifeless? Where do you find a good lightweight sleeping … Continue reading 6 Great Products That Will Make Your Outdoor Life Easier

Meet Yumeka Brown: A Candidate for Election to the Board of the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago

This is my third interview with candidates for the board of the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District (MWRD) of Greater Chicago. The election will be held on June 28, 2022; early voting is ongoing. You can also read my interviews with board candidates Patricia Theresa Flynn and Daniel Pogorzelski. You might ask…why is the MWRD important … Continue reading Meet Yumeka Brown: A Candidate for Election to the Board of the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago