Highlights and News

The Great Migration of Small, Colorful Birds

I’m writing this column on the evening of the warmest day of the year so far, where the temperatures peaked in the low 80s after having snowed earlier in the week.  A strong south wind brought these warm, nearly tropical, temperatures to the Fox River Valley.  Those same strong south winds have also brought up … Read more

A Watershed Moment in Our Watershed

For over 30 years, Friends of the Fox River (FOTFR) has been building a watershed of caretakers. Part of that effort is defining the term watershed (as a drainage area) and delivering this concept as a management strategy. That path has been marked by a few watershed moments; a watershed moment is a turning point, … Read more

Featured Friend: Richard Wilson

Meet Richard Wilson, Friend of the Fox River and Friend to all of Earth’s inhabitants. Richard is spearheading a brand new Friends of the Fox River (FOTFR) service: fishing line removal and disposal from snags between West Dundee and Elgin.  Richard has engineered and assembled all of the tools and equipment needed to remove and properly … Read more

One of America’s Largest Birds Visits the Fox River Valley

On one recent cloudy, cold and blustery Friday morning, I received a text from a friend telling me that there was a flock of pelicans on the Fox River near the observation platform overlooking the Fox River in the far northeastern corner of the Hoover Forest Preserve in Yorkville, Illinois.  Having the day off, I … Read more

No Joke – Free Oak Trees

Possibly and probably the most important single act of being a better Friend to the Fox River, is to introduce an Oak tree to the watershed. No, that is not an April Fool’s joke. Nor is it a joke that Friends of the Fox River (FOTFR) is offering you an oak tree (or a couple) … Read more

Earth Day Every Day

April is Earth Month, and Earth Day is officially on April 22nd. The concept of Earth Day is to recognize human dependence upon earth systems and to honor our mother, Earth. This tradition has been around for fifty-two years. In 1970, the developed world was just beginning to realize the impacts of our consumptive culture. … Read more

March Madness for FOTFR

Friends of the Fox River kept busy during the month of March by participating in 3 community events. While each event had its respective uniqueness, all of them offered ways for people to connect with their river. The Thom McNamee Memorial St. Patrick’s Day parade offered community members the joy of celebration, while Friends of … Read more

A Rap Star Along the Fox River

Hello again fellow Fox River Valley nature enthusiasts!  As I write this column it is mid-February and a rather dreary, cold, and cloudy day.  We’ve had a couple of warmer days recently though that promise that spring is on the way and indeed, at least astronomically, spring begins in late March.  While March has never … Read more

THINKING Like a Watershed

The Fox River is a fine demonstration of Barry Commoner’s Laws of Ecology. Law #1 is that all things are connected. This is evident in the definition of a watershed; it is the entire land area that drains to a common place. The Fox River Watershed covers over 2600 square miles of land that drain … Read more

Featured Friend: Michelle Soland

Winter, Spring, Summer, or Fall, all you have to do is call – Michelle Soland Some people are just special.  It’s really that simple.  Meet Michelle Soland, veteran Friend of the Fox River.  She has been a Friends of the Fox River (FOTFR) staple for close to ten years, developing, leading, and assisting with the … Read more