7 Luxurious Winter Retreats

Are you in the mood for a weekend getaway with plenty of luxury? Check out a few places in our region that’ll help you live like royalty this winter.

‘The Sugarmaker’

With some help from the maple trees on his property, Brad Meinert has found a way to beat the cabin fever blues and make life a little sweeter. His homemade maple syrup is all-natural and worth the many hours of labor.

Kids Around the World

For 25 years, this Rockford-based nonprofit has provided playground equipment, nutritious meals and Christian teaching to children in some of the poorest corners of the globe.

Stronghold Castle
A New Chapter for Stronghold Castle

Once the family estate of a Chicago newspaper magnate, then a Presbyterian camp and retreat center, Stronghold Castle now prepares to enter a new era as its own independent entity.

“Courthouse Mountain.” Another favorite of mine is Courthouse Mountain, located near Ridgeway, Colo. I have photographed it many times, from wide-angle pan to up-close shots, and I always come away with something different. Light plays such a key role in photography, and in the wild it will never look quite the same twice. This day, I used a long exposure to get a bit of cloud streak to accent the great fall colors. Here’s a bit of trivia for you: this photo was taken right near the meadow where the climactic shoot-out scene was filmed in the classic John Wayne film “True Grit.”
A Moment in Time: The Photography of Brad Nordlof

Brad Nordlof travels the world with his camera, always ready to capture the serenity and wonder all around. He has a gift for finding beauty in some of the most peaceful landscapes of North America.