Tag Archives: sioux city iowa

A Snack on a Cold Winter’s Day in Siouxland, Sioux City

7 Feb
A house sparrow eats a sunflower seed it found in the snow Thursday morning, Jan. 19, 2022 in the backyard of a residence in Sioux City, Iowa after 6 plus inches fell Wednesday evening into early Thursday morning as a storm system moved across the U.S. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Recently the Siouxland area had another snow storm. This one dropping anywhere between 4-12 inches depending on where lucky souls happened to reside throughout the region. I felt really bad for some neighborhood residents as they tried to find food after this snow fall and made attempts during a very cold morning to get a meal.

A dark-eyed junco and a house sparrow race to a seed they found in the snow Thursday morning, Jan. 19, 2022 in the backyard of a residence in Sioux City, Iowa after 6 plus inches fell Wednesday evening into early Thursday morning as a storm system moved across the U.S. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)
A house sparrow eats a sunflower seed it found in the snow Thursday morning, Jan. 19, 2022 in the backyard of a residence in Sioux City, Iowa after 6 plus inches fell Wednesday evening into early Thursday morning as a storm system moved across the U.S. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

I watched these neighbors dashing to and fro win the snow, chasing one another away from a possible food source and constantly looking. I photographed them for a while, watching the antics hopes of finding something to eat after the passing storm. Finally I had spent enough time getting fresh air and freezing my toes off. So I put my gear away and returned with nutrients that I filled feeders and spread about the ground, although the little buggers do that well enough themselves as they rush the feeders. Hopefully they got their fill for the time being before looking again in the afternoon as they always do before settling in for the night.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

A squirrel eats a seed it found in the snow Thursday morning, Jan. 19, 2022 in the backyard of a residence in Sioux City, Iowa after 6 plus inches fell Wednesday evening into early Thursday morning as a storm system moved across the U.S. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)
A sparrow sits on a snow covered branch watching for its turn at a feeder Thursday morning, Jan. 19, 2022 in the backyard of a residence in Sioux City, Iowa after 6 plus inches fell Wednesday evening into early Thursday morning as a storm system moved across the U.S. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)
A house sparrow eats a sunflower seed it found in the snow Thursday morning, Jan. 19, 2022 in the backyard of a residence in Sioux City, Iowa after 6 plus inches fell Wednesday evening into early Thursday morning as a storm system moved across the U.S. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

A house sparrow eats a sunflower seed it found in the snow Thursday morning, Jan. 19, 2022 in the backyard of a residence in Sioux City, Iowa after 6 plus inches fell Wednesday evening into early Thursday morning as a storm system moved across the U.S. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Foraging for Food on a Cold Day in Siouxland, Bacon Creek Park, Sioux City

3 Feb
Deer forage in the afternoon on a cold day at Bacon Creek Park in Sioux City, Iowa Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2022. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

On a fairly recent cold day in Siouxland I visited Bacon Creek Park to see what might be about and a chance for a short, quick walk. The weather not really conducive to spending long periods outdoors if didn’t have to, but also having a bit of cabin fever, sometimes short trips and a quick look about is in order.

As I saw these deer looking for some sustenance on this day in snow covered terrain I knew I didn’t have it so bad, leaving a warm house, a meal to return to and a chance to see some nature in action, as limited and calm as it was. Some days are made for a second cup of coffee and contemplation of all that is right.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

A deer forages in the afternoon on a cold day at Bacon Creek Park in Sioux City, Iowa Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2022. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Sharing in Siouxland, Sioux City

1 Feb
A female house finch takes a drink of water from a bird bath in a backyard residence in Sioux City, Iowa Thursday, Nov. 3, 2022.(photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

While watching critters, birds and other animals in Siouxland, I am sometimes amazed at the civil behavior I witness. When photographing birds feeding they will often times work to move one another out of the way so they too can get a “seat at the table” of a particular bird feeder. But watching a couple of house finches, which could actually be mates, the male watched as the female drank from a bird feeder and then helped himself. Whether planned or not or behavioral or not, this particular day the male was chivalrous to the female until they drank their fill and left.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

A female and male house finch share a bird bath for a drink for a drink in a backyard residence in Sioux City, Iowa Thursday, Nov. 3, 2022.(photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Hanging Out in Siouxland on a Cold Winter’s Day, Sioux City

28 Jan
A male cardinal sits nestled in a bush harboring during a cold blustery day at Latham Park in Sioux City, Iowa Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2022. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Some days recently in Siouxland it’s been extremely cold and like the winter’s tale involving Santa Claus’ trip around the world, “not a creature is stirring”. Upon a recent visit to Latham Park, a local private park, birds were hanging out about in the bushes that surround the park. While the green leaves and foliage is gone, the bushes still offer some refuge on a cold day sheltering the little feathered friends from gusts of wind. Probably dreaming of spring and warmer weather themselves. Patience oft thought of as a virtue, can sometimes be in short supply.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Two sparrows sit on an iron wrought fence which surround Latham Park in Sioux City, Iowa Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2022. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

A Downy Woodpecker looks for lunch on a tree at Latham Park in Sioux City, Iowa Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2022. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)
A male cardinal sits nestled in a bush harboring during a cold blustery day at Latham Park in Sioux City, Iowa Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2022. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Still Life in Siouxland, Bacon Creek Park, Sioux City

12 Jan
A still life of drift wood covered in snow and frozen in a pond at Bacon Creek Park in Sioux City, Iowa Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2022. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Sometimes life can be simple and uncomplicated, even in Siouxland. A quiet walk in a park covered in snow when it’s cold. Not many folk about, and sometimes few critters. Which then may make it simple looking for images. Or not.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Freezing One’s A__ Off in Siouxland, Sioux City

27 Dec
Frigid winter weather has temperatures around a -15 degrees Fahrenheit, and wind gusts up to 40 mph making the windchill feel like -44 degrees Fahrenheit, as a squirrel feeds on corn while covered in blowing snow flakes trying to stay warm in Sioux City, Iowa Thursday, Dec. 22, 2022. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Like much of the Midwest and other parts of the country the Siouxland region was in an arctic freezer recently, with temperatures dipping to -44 degrees with windchill and wind gusts of 30-40 mph. I bundled up to clear sidewalks, which later covered again with the wind blowing, and filled feeders. I feel bad for the little critters spending the cold outdoors and so like to see that they have something to eat. And also filled some water bowls I keep outside, which froze over in just minutes. Even heated water bowls I keep outside during the winter were freezing over with just small areas visible without frost or ice. It’s pretty amazing and scary it’s so cold.

As temperatures for the Siouxland region which includes western Iowa, southeastern South Dakota and Northeastern Nebraska are expected to remain at -30 degrees Fahrenheit with wind wind gusts still up to 40 mph, house sparrows drink from a heated pet water bowl outdoors in the backyard of a residence in Sioux City, Iowa Friday, Dec. 23, 2022, photographed through a doorway window pane.
Frigid winter weather has temperatures around a -15 degrees Fahrenheit, and wind gusts up to 40 mph making the windchill feel like -44 degrees Fahrenheit, as house finches and sparrows feed at a backyard feeder then fly to nearby bushes with puffed out feathers trying to stay warm in Sioux City, Iowa Thursday, Dec. 22, 2022. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Photographs of the birds eating do not really tell the story of the frigid weather. Interestingly enough I had to wait a few minutes for the lens to acclimate outdoors as my first set of photos appeared not sharp, and luckily I could stay in a corner area outdoors that was somewhat protected from the wind. The birds though were thoroughly enjoying themselves and the eats and I was happy to see that.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Frigid winter weather has temperatures around a -15 degrees Fahrenheit, and wind gusts up to 40 mph making the windchill feel like -44 degrees Fahrenheit, as sparrows feed on fallen seed from a backyard feeder as they try to stay warm in Sioux City, Iowa Thursday, Dec. 22, 2022. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)
A house finch flies to another feeder as temperatures for the Siouxland region which includes western Iowa, southeastern South Dakota and Northeastern Nebraska are expected to remain at -30 degrees Fahrenheit with wind wind gusts still up to 40 mph, in the backyard of a residence in Sioux City, Iowa Friday, Dec. 23, 2022.
Frigid winter weather has temperatures around a -15 degrees Fahrenheit, and wind gusts up to 40 mph making the windchill feel like -44 degrees Fahrenheit, as sparrows puff out their feathers on a fence line in between trips to backyard feeders trying to stay warm in Sioux City, Iowa Thursday, Dec. 22, 2022. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)
As temperatures for the Siouxland region which includes western Iowa, southeastern South Dakota and Northeastern Nebraska are expected to remain at -30 degrees Fahrenheit with wind wind gusts still up to 40 mph, house sparrows drink from a heated pet water bowl outdoors in the backyard of a residence in Sioux City, Iowa Friday, Dec. 23, 2022, photographed through a doorway window pane.

Alley Art on Display in Siouxland, Sioux City

23 Nov

Water fills an alley during a rain storm as people check out the alley art still on display after a festival earlier this year in downtown Sioux City, Iowa seen Thursday, Oct. 27, 2022. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Sometimes plans to attend an event in Siouxland doesn’t always go as planned as I missed this year’s alley art festival held in downtown Sioux City. A variety of folk decorate and the walls of alleys in the downtown with fanciful and other artistic endeavors which adds a bit to the normally drab scene in the alleys.

Water pours from a down spout during a rain storm in front of alley art on display after a festival earlier this year in downtown Sioux City, Iowa seen Thursday, Oct. 27, 2022. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

An alley is back to normal but the alley art remains after an art festival earlier this year in downtown Sioux City, Iowa seen Thursday, Oct. 27, 2022. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Like many communities the alleys are generally the living rooms and bedrooms for people choosing a homeless lifestyle. The folk find an area that apparently suits them and reside there. I am not certain how it is arranged to allow the artists and others who want to demonstrate their artistic skill to do so on alley walls without possible interference from the “local residents”. In the last few years, the demeanor in and around the alleys in the downtown area seem to take on a different tenor. I used to take photography students shooting at night to teach them skills in choosing white balance and using higher ISO settings and other technical camera stuff along with remembering to make a nice composition. A few years ago I stopped that and chose another smaller community whose alleys were also decorated but were also safer in my opinion than the Sioux City alleys.

Alley art on display after a festival earlier this year in downtown Sioux City, Iowa seen Thursday, Oct. 27, 2022. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Alley art on display after a festival earlier this year in downtown Sioux City, Iowa seen Thursday, Oct. 27, 2022. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

An homage to the performing arts shown through alley art on display after a festival earlier this year in downtown Sioux City, Iowa seen Thursday, Oct. 27, 2022. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

The use of wall space and those willing to give their time to beautify an area is ultimately nice. I would imagine the folk that hang out in the alleys the most enjoy the change in scenery. Banksy or Picasso’s adorning their “living quarters” created by some very talented people. And with winter coming into view, it might be interesting to go back and take a look at the art and the surroundings to see how the winter season looks in juxtaposition to the various displays.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Alley art on display after a festival earlier this year in downtown Sioux City, Iowa seen Thursday, Oct. 27, 2022. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Alley art on display after a festival earlier this year in downtown Sioux City, Iowa seen Thursday, Oct. 27, 2022. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Inspiring Art in Siouxland, Art Splash, Sioux City

28 Sep

Artist Maria Loh creates an image on the sidewalk at Art Slash, a project of the Sioux City Art Center Saturday, Sept. 3, 2022 in Sioux City, Iowa. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Artist Maria Loh creates an image on the sidewalk at Art Slash, a project of the Sioux City Art Center Saturday, Sept. 3, 2022 in Sioux City, Iowa. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Annually in Siouxland a local Art Center in Sioux City holds an “Art Splash” where juried artists can exhibit their wares or creations along with music and activities for children. Artistic endeavors by various artists range from paintings and photography, jewelry, ceramics, wood carving, textiles and fabrics and more.

Jonathan Metzger and his wife, Allison, work collaboratively to create art at Art Slash, a project of the Sioux City Art Center Saturday, Sept. 3, 2022 in Sioux City, Iowa. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Jeremy Hansen poses on a sunny day in front of one of his art pieces at Art Slash, a project of the Sioux City Art Center Saturday, Sept. 3, 2022 in Sioux City, Iowa. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Todd does some finish work for his paramour Kiara Linda at Art Slash, a project of the Sioux City Art Center Saturday, Sept. 3, 2022 in Sioux City, Iowa. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

It’s always fun and educational walking about the many artists, seeing the work they have done and feeling inspired and sometimes lazy as one sees the amount of art and effort that goes into some of the items created, whether two or three dimensional. If tired from walking about one can always grab a bit to eat and listen to whatever entertainment is happening at the time. The 2-day event gives one a chance to explore and for many an opportunity to add to their own individual collections be it for indoor or outdoor settings.

Art inspires as do the artists who create it.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Sidewalk art created by locals at Art Slash, a project of the Sioux City Art Center Saturday, Sept. 3, 2022 in Sioux City, Iowa. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

People fill a blocked off downtown street to look at various artists’ booths during Art Slash, a project of the Sioux City Art Center Saturday, Sept. 3, 2022 in Sioux City, Iowa. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

People fill a blocked off downtown street to look at various artists’ booths during Art Slash, a project of the Sioux City Art Center Saturday, Sept. 3, 2022 in Sioux City, Iowa. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Children create art on the sidewalk at Art Slash, a project of the Sioux City Art Center Saturday, Sept. 3, 2022 in Sioux City, Iowa. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

People fill a blocked off downtown street to look at various artists’ booths during Art Slash, a project of the Sioux City Art Center Saturday, Sept. 3, 2022 in Sioux City, Iowa. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Shhhhhh! Don’t Wake the Babies in Siouxland, Sioux City

4 Sep

Baby house sparrows call out from a bird house for food from their parents in the backyard of a residence in Sioux City, Iowa, Wednesday, August 3, 2022 (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

I’ve noticed some noisy neighbors recently in the area and it has been a bit fun to watch and mostly listen to the little guys/gals as mom or dad flies to and fro feeding them. But I can’t figure out how all three of the baby sparrows plus an adult fit into the birdhouse.

An adult house sparrow has a mouth full of food for its nestlings in a bird house in the backyard of a residence in Sioux City, Iowa, Wednesday, August 3, 2022 (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

An adult house sparrow has a mouth full of food for its nestlings in a bird house in the backyard of a residence in Sioux City, Iowa, Wednesday, August 3, 2022 (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Baby house sparrows go quiet calling out from a bird house for food from their parents in the backyard of a residence in Sioux City, Iowa, Wednesday, August 3, 2022 (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

And I imagine at some point the little dears will be ready to fly off and just hope they make it on their life’s journey. Other neighbors, furry ones, hear the cries of “feed me” and watch longingly from afar, possibly thinking of their own meal.

Nature is what it is. But one hopes like with all living beings they get a chance, but sometimes it sees chance can be a good or bad encounter.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Baby house sparrows call out from a bird house for food from their parents in the backyard of a residence in Sioux City, Iowa, Wednesday, August 3, 2022 (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

An adult house sparrow looks about before flying to a feeder for another batch of baby food for its nestlings in a bird house in the backyard of a residence in Sioux City, Iowa, Wednesday, August 3, 2022 (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Encountering a Jurassic Experience, the Scraposaurs, Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center, Sioux City

1 Aug

The Wooly Rhino was built with salvaged steel and covered in hair plugs and is one of various “prehistoric animals” are represented by the traveling Scraposaurs exhibit now at the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center in Sioux City, Iowa seen Wednesday, June 22, 2022. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Sometimes it’s nice not to have to travel too far in Siouxland to find an interesting exhibit to check out. A traveling exhibit currently at the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center in Sioux City consists of recycled Jurassic critters, or creatures from an earlier age. Artist Dale Lewis created whimsical creatures out of recycled metal bits and pieces. Although pieces might not be the best description for some of these towering creatures.

The pterodactyl is built from a variety of stainless steel screening material with forks for teeth while the chicks are made from former steel farm equipment and part of a traveling Scraposaurs exhibit now at the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center in Sioux City, Iowa seen Wednesday, June 22, 2022. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

The pterodactyl is built from a variety of stainless steel screening material with forks for teeth and is part of a traveling Scraposaurs exhibit now at the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center in Sioux City, Iowa seen Wednesday, June 22, 2022. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

The artist’s inspiration for “Dino” the dog was the TV cartoon “The Flintstones” and is one of a variety of various “prehistoric animals” built from scrap material are represented by the traveling Scraposaurs exhibit now at the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center in Sioux City, Iowa seen Wednesday, June 22, 2022. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Lewis harkens from Minnesota so this may be a way to spend cold winter days as he created these creatures from various metal materials. The exhibit is slated to be on site until April of 2023. So it will be interesting with a heavy winter snow to see these creatures peeking out from under snow drifts. Maybe experiencing another ice age that their forebears endured and were lost in so many centuries ago.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

The “Thing” is one of many creatures built from a variety of scrap material various “prehistoric animals” are represented by the traveling Scraposaurs exhibit now at the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center in Sioux City, Iowa seen Wednesday, June 22, 2022. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

A bison statue is flanked by one of several scrap built “prehistoric animals” are represented by the traveling Scraposaurs exhibit now at the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center in Sioux City, Iowa seen Wednesday, June 22, 2022. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

The artist, Dale Lewis, “signed” his name on one of the “prehistoric animals” are represented in the traveling Scraposaurs exhibit now at the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center in Sioux City, Iowa seen Wednesday, June 22, 2022. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Built from a variety of scrap material various “prehistoric animals” are represented in the traveling Scraposaurs exhibit now at the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center in Sioux City, Iowa seen Wednesday, June 22, 2022. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)
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