A Backward Glance Shows Life is Good at the 45th Parallel

Our world is a peninsula of some 309,000 acres of land about 70 miles long and roughly 20 miles at its widest. Edged with Lake Michigan water and shot through with woods, farmland, streams, forests, lakes, meadows and bluffs, our villages, towns and city settle a small part of the 36 billion acres of land on this Earth. In the City of Chicago, for example, 12,059 people live within each square mile according to Then there’s us, at 62 people per square mile. 

We’re small, but we don’t inhabit our space on this Earth lightly. We take it up big, living it from Jan. 1 through Dec. 31 with meaning and purpose. That’s what these pages show us when we flip through the past 50 issues to compile our Year in Review issue (#51, with next week’s paper the final issue of the year).  

There is no better way to meet a community than to read through a year’s worth of content produced by a dedicated, locally owned newspaper. My bias doesn’t minimize the truth of that statement. Every week, we tell the stories of the people who live, work, play, create, experiment, photograph, discover, debate, analyze, paddle, build, investigate, hike, decide, realize, run, know, explore, bike, compromise and perform here. To say these pages represent an abundance of life and a rich, beautiful world is not an overstatement. It’s flat-out astonishing that so much can happen in such a small place. 

It’s not easy all the time because life is never easy and some years are more challenging than others. As we head into a year with a presidential election, and what will likely be one of those more challenging years, it’s a good time to take this backward, year-in-review glance and recognize we share a love of this place and an earnest, well-meaning intention to create a better life for both the present and future generations.

From our hearts to yours, thanks for being there, thanks for reading and thanks for entrusting us with your stories. 

Happy Holidays!