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Good girl, Gracie: 2014 Pet of the Year winner is a real bundle of joy
Some things just go together. Milk and cookies. Summer and fun. And Karley and Gracie Gracie being the 13-week-old toy poodle puppy owned by 8-year-old Karley Klapp of Knoxville, Illinois. Together, they won the recent Pet of the Year contest at the Radish Healthy Living Fair.

It's a contest whose winner is determined by the most scientific of methods loud clapping and whistling with the finalist who receives the most applause declared the Pet of the Year.

"And she won!" says Karley. "I was really excited, and I didn't know what to do!" More »

Floatzilla: Grab your paddle and head to Lake Potter Aug. 16
It began as a big idea — why not try to break the world record for the largest raft of canoes and kayaks assembled together — and has only grown from there. Floatzilla, the annual paddlesports event put together by River Action, brings canoe and kayak enthusiasts from across the region together for a day of fun on the water. Now in its fifth year, the event will be held Aug. 16.

In past years the count has come within a couple... More »

Portobello, please! Grill up some wholesome, crowd-pleasing mushrooms
If you're like me, you're surrounded by an interesting mix of friends and family with rather specific dietary needs and preferences. Their range in tastes span the foodie spectrum — some are gluten-free, a few are lactose-intolerant, a handful are vegan.

But I love my tribe and I enjoy few things more than cooking a meal for them. This is precisely why I've fallen in love with portobello mushrooms, especially in the summer when you can... More »

Work, rest, work: The science behind the benefits of interval training
We generally think of confusion as a bad thing, but when we are referring to our muscles, confusion can actually be considered positive. That's one of the reasons why the trend known as "interval training" produces such noticeable results. Your muscles are put through their paces quickly and with constantly varied routines, meaning they never get accustomed to a specific workout. They continue to benefit because the workouts keep your muscles guessing... More »

Codfish Hollow: Maquoketa barn is reborn as a distinctive music venue
In 1954, Arnold Stamp completed construction of a large barn with arched sides on his farmland in Maquoketa, Iowa, and celebrated with a barn dance. Fifty-five years later, the barn was filled with music again, this time performed by Caleb Engstrom, The Local Natives, and Catfish Haven. Building on that concert, Codfish Hollow Barn has become an established venue for musical acts showcasing a variety of local and national indie bands, including big names... More »

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