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John Moody, publications editor
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Letter from the Editor: March/April 2011
By John Moody

Dear readers,

March means we've turned the corner. It has a nice ring to it, especially given the snowy scene outside my window as I write to welcome you to this edition of Springfield's Own Magazine. But, thankfully and mercifully, as you read these opening pages, spring is mere days away. So let's get a move on. 

Our cover story from freelance writer Tara McClellan McAndrew is on Michael Burlingame, the noted Lincoln historian. Since 2009, Burlingame has been the Chancellor Naomi B. Lynn Distinguished Chair in Lincoln Studies at the University of Illinois Springfield. Burlingame is known for a thorough and tireless expertise that has been 25 years in the making via the hard but gratifying work of researching our 16th president. An East Coast guy with an Ivy League pedigree, Burlingame is more than comfortable here on the prairie pursuing our most famous native son. Like his favorite subject, Burlingame is known for an unstuffy manner. As you read, do take note that our own A. Lincoln actually met up with one of Burlingame's own clan during his lifetime.

Since this is the month of March, it is more than appropriate that our shadows grace a couple of local Irish pubs in honor of the patron saint of Ireland. Contributor Courtney Westlake takes us to D'Arcy's Pint and to Dublin Pub for a pint or two and a plate or two. It's a laid-back day for stout to drink and strong friendship to savor. 

On the subject of food, while it is the month for celebrating all things Irish, there's always room for some good Italian food. Angela's A Taste of Italy is a tasty neighborhood place loaded with great flavors and aromas. Cookies and pizzas, ravioli and salads and ciabatta loaves, to name only a few items, waft together to tempt the unsuspecting and the suspecting, for that matter, passer-by. It was love that brought owner Angela Lichtenberger from her native Italy to Springfield many years ago. It's love from her customers that keeps the little place thriving. 

If you're a lover of art and you've got the idea that you'd like to fill your house with only your favorite things, good for you. Maybe you desire to be surrounded by original pieces created by local artists. That's plenty noble, but how do you make it happen? Columnist Janet Seitz Carlson comes to the rescue with a plan you can use. 

Take a trip, two actually, with travel writer Nancy Pistorius. We head out to the wonderful American West to Cheyenne, Wyo. Sure, there's plenty of cowboys and cowgirls, but there's also history and museums and even sophistication, not to mention elegant places for dining and lodging. And then, Nancy brings us to Amsterdam. There's more to Amsterdam and the whole of Holland than you've read about. It's a place for the whole family. 

Freelance photographer Tim Murphy journeyed to Chicago and brought back a thoughtful portrait of the City of Big Shoulders in stark but artful black and white. We offer the familiar with wine (suitable to the season), architecture, sculpture, hot cars and photos of folks you know enjoying our town. 

Remember to check us out online at www.springfieldsown.com. And, think spring!


Story published Friday, March 4, 2011 ( Volume 6, Number 2 )

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