CHRISTMAS LIGHTS, SIGHTS, & SOUNDS

Although the COVID-19 pandemic has caused some of our beloved Christmas traditions to be postponed until next year, others will continue, go virtual, or have been modified. Fortunately, it is possible to see many Christmas lights throughout Southern Illinois from the safety and comfort of our own cars. Other events have been social distanced. Route … Continue reading CHRISTMAS LIGHTS, SIGHTS, & SOUNDS

Surviving 2020 in Southern Illinois

It's the year 2035, and you have been asked to write a chapter on the pandemic of 2020 in a history text book to discuss its impact on Southern Illinois. (By 2035, Southern Illinois is NOT referred to as "flyover country. " It becomes a highly sought after cultural, culinary, and natural destination... ) What … Continue reading Surviving 2020 in Southern Illinois

Beer Can Alley

If you've driven around in the country by Salem, this serene scene might be familiar... Beer Can Alley, a name that appears to make no sense now, was once lined with beer cans, among other things. That changed dramatically when the recycling movement really took off in the late 70's and early 80's. Fortunately, the … Continue reading Beer Can Alley

Saturday in Salem

A Slice of Southern Illinois had the pleasure of spending this past Saturday in Salem participating in the vendor fair for Royal Kids Camp and visiting familiar Salem icons. Each vendor donated items to the quarter auction to raise money for foster kids from group homes and in foster families to be able to attend … Continue reading Saturday in Salem

Easter Celebrations in Southern Illinois

Easter is quickly approaching. There are many celebrations planned in Southern Illinois. These range from special worship services on Resurrection Day to specialty Easter Egg Hunts. One of the sure signs that Easter was coming as a little kid was that the candy isle in Tresslar's at Salem filled with beautiful Easter candies and baskets. … Continue reading Easter Celebrations in Southern Illinois

My Mom’s Christmas Tray

I have a confession to make. As a child I never understood why so many people hated fruitcake, or even why it was called "cake." You see, my Mom's fruitcake was more like candy. She got the recipe from a fancy restaurant somewhere, and it was pretty much pecans and candied fruit. Every year, growing … Continue reading My Mom’s Christmas Tray

Fourth of July Celebrations in Southern Illinois

Southern Illinois is home to many Fourth of July celebrations. This year, some start as early as June 28, and others are not until July 7. Hopefully, there is an event that fits everyone's schedule. This is by no means a list of all fireworks and celebrations in Southern Illinois, but there are links to … Continue reading Fourth of July Celebrations in Southern Illinois

Memorial Day Traditions in Southern Illinois

Southern Illinoisans have a rich history of family-based Memorial Day Traditions. Some families gather for reunions and picnics. Others get together to honor the memory of loved ones by placing flowers on graves. Communities gather to remember and honor those who have served our country. Swimming pools open, and annual festivals bring people together to … Continue reading Memorial Day Traditions in Southern Illinois

Corn, Ranch Dressing, and Giardiniera

Contestant Robyn opened her cooler on this Sunday night's episode of "Worst Cooks in America" and found the following three ingredients: corn, ranch dressing, and giardiniera. These foods had been chosen to represent Illinois. (Technically, the dart she threw at the map to choose her state landed in Southern Illinois --more specifically, Southwestern Illinois... ) … Continue reading Corn, Ranch Dressing, and Giardiniera