Rockford Squire

Ranger Steve’s Nature Niche Great Blue

January 29, 2015 // 0 Comments

How cheery and uplifting a bright blue sky is for the soul in mid winter. It draws me to break trail in fresh snow. The experience is most beautiful when scattered white clouds parade in front of the sun creating an alternating blue-gray snow blanket when clouds temporary block the glistening sparkles of sunrays on snow crystals that soon reappear once clouds have past. I want to bundle everyone in warm winter clothes to join on the Courier and Ives experience among the natural wonders beyond our confining doors. It is easy to dream about the beauty of times past when viewing Courier and Ives pictures or watching winter scene screen-savers cascade across the computer. Stick your head out the window and yell “I’m Excited” to alert your neighbors. Bundle up and show others it is time to explore the Great Blue. With unrestrained excitement I started the morning. The dog was anxious to head into the great blue yonder. I carried a camera to concentrate on the snow covered tree branches with the blue and white backdrop created by the crisp winter sky. A 20-degree temperature was comfortably warm but cold enough to preserve snow snakes on stark winter branches. Some of the snow was slipping from branches but was cohesive enough to hang in loops creating the appearance of long white snakes resting in the winter sun. Just as I was ready to snap a picture the loop broke and fell. I’ll wait for another day to capture an intact winter snow snake. Meanwhile the dog was searching the snow with nose buried deep in rabbit and deer tracks. His nose was to the ground while my eyes were raised to the sky. We finished our joint walk and I venture out to explore on my own. I walked toward Peninsula Bridge at Ody Brook Nature Sanctuary. As I approach the footbridge over the creek, another Great Blue leaped from the shallow water, stretched large wings and flew upstream. Each winter I occasionally see a Great Blue Heron frozen statue-like in the creek’s shallow water waiting to spear a passing fish for lunch. When it flew, I was unprepared to raise the camera to capture its departing Great Blue. I expected I might […]

Congratulations to Crestwood Elementary Cub Scout Roman Lowery

January 14, 2015 // 0 Comments

He was awarded the Super Achiever award on January 6, 2015.  Roman earned this special achievement by fulfilling all the requirements needed for all 20 Webelos badges. Roman will also receive the prestigious Arrow Of Light award in February, and then transition into Boy Scout Troop 228.  A job well done!

Squire is on the scene at the Super Bowl

February 9, 2012 // 0 Comments

This Rockford Squire reader was at the big game with his hometown newspaper last Superbowl Sunday. He was kind enough to take a picture and send it along. We have a card good for a free classified ad to the first person who visits our office and can identify him and spell his last name correctly. He is also a business owner in downtown Rockford. Who can correctly identify his business?

Squire travels to Xuantunich Mayan Ruins

February 9, 2012 // 0 Comments

Michelle and Doug Loper visited Belize in January and took their local paper, the Rockford Squire, along. The couple are pictured at the Xuantunich Mayan Ruins (pronounced CHEW-nahn-too-neech) on January 19. The runs are just eight miles from the Guatemala border. “The largest structure is the pyramid El Castillo, which is 160 feet from the plaza floor and built at the top of a hill,” described Michelle. “From the top of El Castillo you can see the breathtaking view of the rest of the ruins. The restored sections of this city contain a ceremonial center, residences for the wealthiest of the population, a middle-class residential area, and a ball court complex.” Thank you to the Lopers for remembering to take their paper along and sending these dramatic photographs.Email Squire vacation pictures to

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