Snowy Owls

Looking like something out of Harry Potter a fellow Photo and Cinema grad from The Ohio State University caught this owl hanging out in the Marietta area. For Exploring Ohio Magazine this is the first guest photographer post! Thank you Mike. See his bio below.

There are some unusual visitors in large numbers in Ohio this year.  In an average year 3-5 Snowy Owls can be seen in Ohio.  This year there are a dozen on the breakwater at Cleveland Lakefront by itself.  There is one in a farmers field in Holmes County that is notoriously posing for photographers.  I live in Marietta, far, far off the beaten path for such unusual visitors and yet we have one here.  There are reports of dozens, literally dozens of these owls scattered throughout the state and possibly hundreds in Michigan.

A particularly good year in the Arctic tundra for lemmings, mice, rats, ground squirrels, vole and other rodents means that a larger number of young predators, including Snowy Owls, survived and are seeking winter homes.  There is also the possibility that the ice over the Arctic Ocean has fewer gaps this year so that there is more competition for those spaces.  Whatever the case it makes for a fine year for seeing a truly unusual visitor from the frozen north.

Mike Williams has Bachelors and Masters Degrees from The Ohio State University.  He is retired from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources where he was the departmental photojournalist for over 25 years and is currently a West Virginia Master Naturalist. He has served as the President of the Friends of the Ohio River Islands National Wildlife Refuge and presents programs in Ohio and West Virginia for photo clubs, naturalist groups and libraries.

Not too corny

If you want to see the real American values and how people treat each other go to a county fair or festival. Real friendly people that you can approach and talk to and the food is terrific too. Thank you to Dan and the people of Clinton County, great time.

Couple more teaser pictures from today. You think you have problems putting on a timing belt, try the belt for the saw mill!  Young kids are great anywhere and if you live in tractor county you gotta start young before you test yourself on the field. Corn roasted up plus ice cream and cinnamon apples, oh and a Buckeye statement. A line up of ageless John Deere’s and the fall bouquet of mums for a great Ohio finish.

Coming soon… to a browser near you.

In making a monthly online magazine one need a certain amount of content that is relevant to the mission. In doing so I am photographing various events around the state now for next year. So May for the June Columbus arts festival, July for the State Fair, August for the Sweet corn festival, September for Renaissance and riverboat festivals, etc..

Additionally I have almost a half a century of images from over the years having covered some of these events. I will be able to show some ‘then and now’ images and republish images from places long gone.  Some of the stories to come from the photo archives: Concerts from the Richfield Coliseum, White Castle project from the 80′, Amish barn raising and a look at the prisons back then – Mansfield Reformatory and the “Pen” in Columbus, plus Lucasville when it first opened.

It will be a great fun and I hope you get as much joy from this as I will.

Oh, and suggestions please as we look for the ‘best’ of Ohio.  Chocolate, hole in the wall restaurants, pizza, smallest and largest.  Nothing is off limits. Let me know what’s in your neck of the woods that should show up here.Amish68BoyCows

Time to get around

Eventually Exploring Ohio will be a monthly photo magazine with current and archived images from around Ohio. And while we might think we know where the best of Ohio is, you as a reader will know locally what the best might be.  Keep us informed.

Dublin street festival and Upper Arlington Arts Festival are a few of the Central Ohio events annual events.  More to come from around the state.

Upper Arlington Arts Festival 2015
Upper Arlington Arts Festival 2015
1st annual Dublin Street festival
1st annual Dublin Street festival