The F-Word.

The grass is always greener, the water’s always cleaner and

the wine is always sweeter on the other side of the hill. Nope!




Fall has always been my favorite time of the year. Aside from the obvious things, like leaves turning colors and cooler temperatures, there is much, much more to fall in the 573.

No, it is hot as heck one day, and then Wham-O! It is fall and cool outside.

Fall is not like the slow approach of summer from spring or the gradual warming of winter to spring. No, it is hot as heck one day, and then Wham-O! It is fall and cool outside. The sky turns the bluest blue, the air gets crisp, and I get the urge to grab a camera and hit the trails. We have all the elements here which take fall over the top to make it fantastic. Emmm, the colors!


Day-trippers by the score come to hike our parks and sip wine in our beautiful vineyards.

With the changing of the leaves and the harvesting of the grapes, come thousands of tourists from St. Louis and all over the Midwest. The baby boomer bikers come cruising on their decked-out motorcycles to view the colors of our rolling hills. Day-trippers by the score come to hike our parks and sip wine in our beautiful vineyards. Light duty spinner bait and fly fishermen enjoy our clear streams. Off-road dirt bikers and mountain bikers roam the best trails in the Midwest. Kayakers and floaters hit the rapids. Truth be told, parks like St. Joe, St. Francois, Hawn, Elephant Rocks, Taum Sauk and Pickle Springs are properties that other areas can only dream of possessing. I know the 573 is the place for turkey and deer hunting, so much so that people from other places actually own large parcels of property just to hunt. The more people that use the area for recreation and tourism, the better off we all become. Besides spending money here, some decide to retire here, and others start businesses that create more opportunities for all of us.


See the leaves, hike the parks and
sip the wine. Get out there and enjoy
this stuff while you can.


There are plenty of extreme sports for the younger generation, and there are also gentler things for the less adventurous to enjoy. And recently, the area has been gaining a reputation for its new art scene. And it really is a 55+ dreamland with hundreds of activities and organizations designed for retirees.






I have lived and traveled in many parts of the world, and I can tell you flat out, without any doubt, the grass is not even close to being greener anywhere else. The 573 is one of the greatest places on Earth. And remember, please do not litter. It just makes good sense.


-the editor