This is our last installment of May is for Monarchs. Last week we learned about how tough being on the road can be when you don't have a well-developed highway. This week we'll learn what it takes to open up our own roadside oasis for monarchs traveling the Monarch Highway. Before diving in, we have a little update from the federal government.
Last week we showcased the hottest monarch travel spots around. When great monarch B&Bs and roadside diners are plentiful it makes traveling so much easier. But what happens when that Monarch Highway is a desolate stretch of nothingness? Family travel can be challenging. Let alone without having to contend with long stretches without amenities.
Last week we read about the fascinating story of the monarch migration. That monarch is such a traveler we have. This week focuses on their habitat and highlights the best monarch roadside diners around. Monarchs have peculiar tastes in both food and shelter.
First up, a little background. Monarchs don't start out as that beautiful butterfly we see 'nectaring' in the backyard on occasion. They start out as rather unattractive, little blobs, not anything destined to win a beauty contest any time soon. Their attractive mother, however, well she's pretty smart. She chose the perfect spot for her babies, ensuring a good supply of food and a place to grow.
Sometimes it takes generations for a family to arrive. Each parent lays way for the next generation to move forward. Toiling for the sake of family is a strong motivator. It keeps us focused. It carries us through trials. It tempers our spirit toward love and forgiveness. I find this sense of collective endeavor in the story of the monarch migration.
This is the first installment of a four part series on Illinois' official state insect, the monarch butterfly. Each week focuses on an aspect of this incredible story. It tells the tale of survival, regeneration, connection and current day challenges. From a monarch's perspective we take a look at family travel and highlight the best roadside diners. Further in, we expose trials and tribulations along the Monarch Highway. And finally, in episode four we embark on becoming monarch resort entrepreneurs.