Additional Articles


The co-op community that keeps your lights on

When a big storm knocks out your power, there’s a good chance help is already on the way from electric cooperatives near and far. That lightning-fast response comes from a combination of a centuries-old co-op tradition, the latest in weather-forecasting technology, an ingenious contract between electric cooperatives and municipal utilities, and lineworkers’ spirit of dedication, […]

Best of Illinois

Recognize the best in Illinois.

Nominations are now open! Vote for your favorite local places to dine, shop, travel and do business in Illinois. The 2018 Best of Illinois Readers’ Choice Awards will include nominations for three regions – Northern, Central and Southern Illinois. Readers can cast nominations for all three regions and 40 categories. Please include the city for […]

Father of the Year Banner

Nominate a Father

While every father is special, some are just extraordinary in their willingness to help their families and others. If your dad or another man in your community is deserving of this honor, nominate him. Tell us in 500 words about that special dad, what he does and why he deserves to win the title. Just […]

Do you have a Christmas you remember?

Share one of your favorite memories of the holidays and it could end up in the December pages of Illinois Country Living. Perhaps you received the worst gift possible or were completely surprised by something amazing. Do smells of holiday baking bring back memories? Perhaps your family has a Christmas tradition you’d like to share. […]

A family tradition of cooperative public service

 Congresswoman Cheri Bustos (D-IL 17) grew up in Springfield, but her family roots run deep in rural Illinois. Her family connection with electric co-ops and public service starts with her grandfather Joe Callahan, a hog farmer from Milford, Ill., who was a state representative during some of the most turbulent times for Illinois electric cooperatives. […]


Other Illinois Zoos Illinois is well represented in the world of zoos, aquariums and animals sanctuaries. Some of the state’s offering: Brookfield Zoo; 3300 Golf Road, Brookfield; (708) 688-8000;  Cosley Zoo; 1356 N. Gary Avenue, Wheaton; (630) 665-5534; Glen Oak Zoo; 2218 North Prospect Street, Peoria; (309) 686-3365;  Henson Robinson Zoo; 1100 East […]

Rural electric youth tour: shaping our youth for 55 years

Illinois Rural Electric Youth Tour is turning 55! And oh, what a tour it’s been. “I’ve loved this trip. Every year is a new adventure,” says Kristin Banks, Illinois Coordinator of Youth Programs. Anyone who’s looked after a group of 16- and 17-year-olds in Washington, D.C., for Youth Tour knows how challenging and physically exhausting […]

Energy from the ground up

The winter of 2014 was a wake-up call for homeowners facing higher-than-normal heating costs. With the polar vortex came heavy snowfalls and record low temperatures for extended periods. Impacting much of the country, including Illinois, the cost of heating hit many people hard this year. Propane gas, in particular, skyrocketed in price. Some folks paid […]

Co-ops tell Congress it’s time to act

From Illinois and across the country, electric cooperative leaders converged on Capitol Hill to deliver a message to Congress: The time to act is now. More than 2,500 Co-op Nation citizens rallied at the 2014 National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) Legislative Conference on behalf of co-op priorities that stretch beyond the partisan political divide […]

A good idea is worth repeating

You probably remember reading or hearing about HomE. It was the award-winning energy ­efficiency program of the Illinois electric cooperatives that provided nearly 3,500 energy audits, along with $2.5 million in financial incentives for ­efficiency upgrades, for electric co-op ­members during 2010 and 2011. HomE provided incentive dollars for nearly 775 ­geothermal heat pump installations […]