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Looking Back On Eight Years Of LIFE

LIFE-38 Years of Life. Our 8 Year Old Life: A Story of Perseverance and Positivity

We launched ValpoLife.com eight years ago as a grand plan you could probably fit on the back of a business card. It was just three employees and I, there above my garage, working. Based on a strong hunch, a desire to do something different in the second half of my life that fed my soul, and a resounding vote of no-confidence across every traditional media executive I suggested it to at the time, we set out with a mission. We were going to be the good news people. A hub of everything positive you could imagine about Valpo, and stick to that dead simple concept in what stories we told; pictures we took; videos we made; people we engaged with; organizations we served; and comment or tweet made online.

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Links of the Week: The Solar Eclipse, Rotten Tomatoes, and What Happens When Silicon Valley Takes Over Journalism?


So the there will be a total solar eclipse on Sunday, as you may have heard.

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A Portage Life in the Spotlight: Caleb Hall


Caleb Hall, Program Director for the Dusty Rhodes Boys and Girls Club of Portage, is no stranger to the club’s influence on young minds and lives in Northwest Indiana. For most of his young life, Hall spent his time growing and learning at the club, and now, he’s giving the kids of Portage the same chance.

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10 Fun Things to Do This Weekend in Northwest Indiana August 18 - 20, 2017


And…. Summer is over. We had a great time, did you? Even though, our school bags are packed, you do not need to put those bathing suits away just yet! Enjoy some more summer events and head out to Hobart for the city’s annual Lakefront Festival! Enjoy some craft beer and delicious wine at the Michigan City and Highland beer fests, and don’t forget to take a bit of some great BBQ at Marram Health Center!

For more of an active weekend, there is a nightly bike ride and an inflatable obstacle course that trust me, you won’t want to miss! Then, relax with the arts. The Lubeznik Center is hosting their eye-opening, beautiful art festival and then you can take a sneak at the Chicago Street Theater’s 63rd season! What an amazing way to end the summer days! Have fun!

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Time to Rethink U. S. Highway 30

Leigh-MorrisU.S. Highway 30 is a key 155 mile traffic artery that runs between the Illinois and Ohio state lines. For most of its length, it is classified as a limited access highway, which means that at-grade intersections or driveway cuts are not allowed unless a permit is issued. However, through the years many permits have been issued so that today it should probably be considered limited access in name only. Along with the proliferation of access permits issued, there has been growth in the number of traffic signals at intersections—40 of them between I 65 and I 69 alone. All of this has impeded traffic flow and contributed to the number of accidents as vehicles enter and leave the highway.

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Links of the Week: Jennifer Lawrence, Facebook, and Why I am Not Giving Up on Football


I was *thisclose* to giving up on football this year. Once a DirecTV Red Zone Channel addict, I spent much of last year not watching football at all. There were a few reasons: the Bears were bad. I got rid of cable. I started needing more time on Sundays to do, like housework and stuff. 

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A Portage Life in the Spotlight: Steffani Dranchak


For many, the act of going to work each day is a chore, something done out of necessity rather than love of their career. For Steffani Dranchak, though, heading to work at Rittenhouse Village in Portage is rewarding and something she has looked forward to for the past six years.

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10 Fun Things to Do This Weekend in Northwest Indiana August 11 - 13, 2017


Let’s get ready to party! Wow, what a fun list of activities to join into this weekend. Either pick one and camp out at or jump around throughout the area to fit them all in! There is the Duneland Chamber Party in the Park, St. John’s Chamber Annual Corn Roast, and Hannafest! Spend the Saturday biking, then head to another live music show at the Prairie Magic Music Festival or the Valpo YMCA’s Battle of the Bands. Show off your car, watch some jet ski racers zoom across the Whiting beach front, or party for a great cause at the Salvation Army’s Block Party! These events are great ways to end the summer and kick-off the school year!

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Links of the Week: Hypnobirthing, Hyperloops, and Can We Make It to Sunday without Game of Thrones Being Spoiled?


I’m having a baby.

We’ll, not actually. My wife is. Today actually marks Day 1 of the third trimester, so things are starting to pick up. Related: I am getting a crash course in all things “dad.” Basically all of my free time is being spent reading books, Googling stuff like “what is swaddling,” “swaddling techniques”, and generally just trying to prepare myself enough so when that magical time comes - just three months from now - I can at least not embarrass myself (publicly).

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Reading on Running: Favorite Blogs for Tips and Motivation


Running is hard. For those of us racing couch to 5k’s, marathons, or even triathlons and ultras, we have all butted up against the difficulties of motivating ourselves to run, to get that split time, and finally toe the starting line.

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A Portage Life in the Spotlight: Nancy Mendez-Lopez


Nancy Mendez-Lopez, Assistant Vice President and Branch Manager for Centier, has always worked hard, for not only a community she loves, but also her family she would do anything for.

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