Thinking Spring

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Feb 102009

Miller Lite Ride Milwaukee '08
Even though it’s early February, we’ve already registered for two events that mark the beginning of summer– Bike The Drive in Chicago on May 24 and The Miller Lite Ride for the Arts in Milwaukee two weeks later, on June 7.
These are both awesome events– I’ve done Bike the Drive every year since its inception, and last year was our first time at the Miller Lite Ride.
Bike the Drive features the annual closing of Lake Shore Drive so you can ride your bike along the lakefront from The Museum of Science and Industry all the way north to Bryn Mawr Avenue. The Miller Lite ride starts in downtown Milwaukee, runs south through several neighborhoods, and then back up to end at the Summerfest grounds.
If it stays nice here for the next day or so I may just get one of the bikes out for a quick spin.

Jun 032008

Miller Lite Ride 6/1/2008
We got up early on Sunday morning to make the drive to Milwaukee and join the 2008 Miller Lite Ride for the Arts. This is a great ride through downtown Milwaukee and the surrounding areas, and it was a beautiful day for all 6,000 participants.
Our ride began in the middle of downtown Milwaukee and went in an almost-loop that ended at the Summerfest grounds. You’ll see our post-ride refreshment below.
I brought along the Allez for this ride, and it did very well in spite of several potholes.
This is a ride that will be on our card for next year!
Miller Lite Ride 6/1/2008
Miller Lite Ride 6/1/2008
Miller Lite Ride 6/1/2008
Miller Lite Ride 6/1/2008

May 272008

Bike The Drive 2008
On Sunday morning, we were part of the 20,000 people who swarmed Lake Shore Drive for the annual Bike The Drive.
We started out in Grant Park (Jackson and LSD) at about 5:45 am, and we completed the entire 30-mile path– north to Bryn Mawr and south to The Museum of Science and Industry– by 10:00 am. We took a leisurely pace because this is a family event, and there were a lot of people riding who haven’t been on their bikes since last year’s event. Our trip up and down the Drive also included a couple of rest and refreshment stops, along with taking advantage of some good photo ops. The good thing is that when we finished we weren’t exhausted.
I’ve mentioned this here before, but there’s nothing like riding along the lakefront with the cool air blowing around you and only the sounds of bicycle gears and tires in your ears.
Lisa rode her Raleigh C30 and I brought out the trusty Schwinn Woodlands. I haven’t done any Spring prep on my Specialized Allez, but I have the feeling there may be an event in its future…
As always, it’s a great start to the cycling season, and I’m sure we’ll be on the bikes a lot this summer.
Bike The Drive 2008
Bike The Drive 2008
Bike The Drive 2008
Bike The Drive 2008

Feb 072008

The Rolling Meadows Mustangs Girls Basketball season has ended.
The sophomore team (shown above after their win over Wheeling on February 1) finished their season on Tuesday night at Palatine High School with an 8-7 record. Pretty impressive, and it bodes well for next year!
The team’s final game, which was scheduled to be played at home on Wednesday night, was canceled due to weather. Becka and her teammates were heartbroken that their chance to end the season at home didn’t happen.
1-2-3.. Mustangs!

Nov 032007

The Rolling Meadows Mustangs were defeated this afternoon by the Lake Zurich Bears, 10-7.
After holding the lead for much of the game, the Mustangs finally went down in the second half.
It was a great season, and we’re glad to see the Mustangs go this far.

Playoff Time!

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Oct 282007

Last night, the Rolling Meadows Mustangs defeated the Niles Notre Dame Dons 37-0. It was quite a game.

Next weekend, the Mustangs move on to play Lake Zurich on their turf. Let’s see if RMHS can keep the momentum going!

Sep 252007

We spent Sunday on Tortuga, Liz and Bob’s boat on the Fox River.

We launched at The Broken Oar, where the boat is docked, in Port Barrington (the town formerly known as Fox River Valley Gardens). We went south on the river to Fox River Grove, then back up north to lunch at Kief’s Reef in McHenry.

It was a great way to spend one of the last nice, warm weekends of the year.

Go Cubs

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Jul 152007

We went to the Cubs game today and watched them win over the Astros by a score of 7-6. (Well, you can see that above.) Lisa’s brother got the tickets, and her folks came up for the game.
The photo was taken just before the “W” flag was hoisted.
And thanks to Lisa’s new digital camera, you can even see the dude working the scoreboard. :-)

Sep 062006

Photobucket - Glowing Bull
We decided to spend a gloomy, rainy Labor Day at Putting Edge Glow-in-the-Dark Mini Golf in Hoffman Estates.
That’s Lisa in her pink Chicago Bulls hat– the logo was glowing eeeerily, much like everything else there.
Emma and Friend
Here’s Emma with an octopus. Or a squid.
Man, blacklights really cheese off digital cameras– especially the camera in my phone, which is what I used to take this. And you should have seen what these photos looked like when Photoshop tried to “auto-correct” them.
Details of our visit to Putting Edge are covered in our September 9 episode of The Cheap Date Show.

Aug 122006

Twin Links Poster
The Twin Links Mini Golf Course in Mt Prospect is closing tomorrow after 42 years in business.
There will be a 24-hour care facility and imaging center on the site, which I suppose is better than another bunch of retail.
Twin Links at Night
Having grown up about a mile east of Twin Links, I have a lot of memories of the place and its two 18-hole courses. Many of my early summertime days were spent at the course with my elder siblings (I remember how cool the scorecards and little pencils looked), followed by a visit to the McDonald’s across the street.
Many days during the summer between my freshman and sophomore years in high school were spent there– my friends and I used to ride our bikes there, followed by a visit to the Ben Franklin and Tony’s Hobby Lobby in Arlington Heights.
When I was a senior, my high school actually had a Miniature Golf unit in Physical Education– they would bus us from the school to Twin Links, where we barely had enough time to play 10 holes before being shuttled back.
I had several dates there, as well. That was where I learned the fine art of how (and when) to miss sinking an easy putt.
In the early 1990s, now an adult and homeowner, I started visiting the new batting cages. I realized it was lot of fun and a good way to get rid of the frustrations of the day in both good times and not-so-good times.
I introduced my kids to Twin Links in the early 2000s, and they’ve been hooked ever since.
The other night’s game under the lights was a lot like I remembered the place, but as you can see in the photo above the fluorescent “gas station” style lights weren’t turned on– their services were now provided by halogen lamps mounted on high poles.
Over the years, the place has changed a bit; some of the “hazards” were upgraded– a new Statue of Liberty was installed in the 80s and a carousel was added in the 90s– but it mostly remained the same, including the water hazard with its little blue pool on #8, the guillotine on #4, and the scorecard stands at each hole with their hand-painted lettering.
Twin Links Statue of Liberty
The girls, Lisa, and I played the North Course on Thursday night and the South Course on Friday morning. Here’s the scorecard from Thursday night, filled in by Becky:
Scorecard 1
Scorecard 2
The event on Sunday is supposed to include giveaways of Twin Links memorabilia; we’re not sure if we’re going to attend, but we may stop by for one final time. In the event we don’t make it, here are some scans of a blank Twin Links scorecard, front and back.
We’ll sure miss the place.

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