50 in 50

Iowa: If you build it, workers will come.

John Kinsella: Is this heaven? Ray Kinsella: It’s Iowa. John Kinsella: Iowa? I could have sworn this was heaven. —Field of Dreams (1989) *** Did you know that in Iowa–yes, heavenly, heart-of-the-corn-belt Iowa–hogs outnumber people 4 to 1? That’s 12 million hogs to 3 million people, in case you’re wondering. And yet in 1978, whenContinue Reading “Iowa: If you build it, workers will come.”

50 in 50

50 in 50: Indiana: Popcorn and Movies from America’s Heartland

Couldn’t resist sharing Jim Gaffigan’s humorous take on Indiana (above). He was born there. He’s allowed to poke fun. For true Hoosiers–those who stay–Indiana’s more like this: Then there’s the Indiana portrayed on ABC’s The Middle.  The Hecks–Frankie (Patricia Heaton), a dental hygienist, Mike (Neil Flynn), a quarry supervisor, and their three kids–are a less-than-perfectContinue Reading “50 in 50: Indiana: Popcorn and Movies from America’s Heartland”

50 in 50

50 in 50: Illinois. Land of Lincoln. And Really Cool Hats.

I adore Chicago. It is the pulse of America.—Sarah Bernhardt Illinois, “Land of Lincoln,” truly reflects our country. Its complexities. Its challenges. Its uniqueness. In a 2007 analysis of Census Bureau data, the Associated Press looked at each state to determine how closely it “matched national levels on 21 demographic factors, including race, age, income, education,Continue Reading “50 in 50: Illinois. Land of Lincoln. And Really Cool Hats.”

50 in 50

50 in 50: Georgia on My Mind. Green Jackets, Blue Jeans, Pink Plastic Shoes.

My Father loved the ‘Woolen Mill’, it was his life. He especially loved the people he worked with…it was people working together, and living in a community that supported them, and they supported the community…He was happy there.  –Lawrence Head, Reader Comment, December 15, 2015, Pieces of…Our Past *** Last Sunday–as magnolias bloomed and the smell ofContinue Reading “50 in 50: Georgia on My Mind. Green Jackets, Blue Jeans, Pink Plastic Shoes.”

50 in 50

50 in 50: Florida: Rifle Paper Company

Rain threatens once more here in already-soggy Nor Cal. As the gathering clouds throw darkness across my laptop’s screen, a quick search shows it’s 80 degrees in Florida, the subject of today’s post. Scrolling through the 45 manufacturers listed on Made in Florida, I debate which product to feature: Tropicana orange juice? ValPak coupons? How aboutContinue Reading “50 in 50: Florida: Rifle Paper Company”

50 in 50

50 in 50: Delaware: Muskrat, Moon Suits and Mint Jelly? Oh My.

On December 7, 1787, Delaware became the first state to ratify the Constitution of the United States, and has since promoted itself as “The First State.” Thanks, Wikipedia. I’d always thought of Delaware as The Incorporation State. I stand corrected. In researching the 49th smallest state in the Union, I feared the worst. Would I againContinue Reading “50 in 50: Delaware: Muskrat, Moon Suits and Mint Jelly? Oh My.”

50 in 50

50 in 50: Connecticut: Buttons, Balls, Bells…and Blandings

Mention Connecticut and–at least for those of us who love old movies–the Hollywood-circa-1940’s version of the place takes over. Think Christmas in Connecticut, Holiday Inn and Mr. Blandings Builds His Dreamhouse. Although 100 percent filmed in southern California, the classic New England farmhouses in these movies–complete with charming fireplaces and light-filled, cozy rooms–convincingly transport viewers to Connecticut.Continue Reading “50 in 50: Connecticut: Buttons, Balls, Bells…and Blandings”

50 in 50

50 in 50: CAMJ’s Top 5 Products Made in Colorado

As luck would have it, ColoradoBiz Magazine’s annual “Made in Colorado” issue came out yesterday–just in time for a slightly-panicked blogger in need of good, locally-made stuff (no, not that kind of stuff…) to write about. Showcasing an impressive 250 Centennial State manufacturers, the ColoradoBiz list includes a few companies whose products have achieved iconic status:Continue Reading “50 in 50: CAMJ’s Top 5 Products Made in Colorado”