Are You A True Rockfordian? Take The Quiz
Anything under 70% and you'll be escorted from the city.
I came across this Facebook post from 6 years ago the other day. As the post says, this was a little outdated 6 years ago, so some questions might not make sense today but you get the point.
I usually don't like the gate-keeping mentality some people have about where you get to say you're from. This is a big Chicago problem. God forbid someone from Arlington Heights tell a person from Minnesota that they live in Chicago.
Seriously, it's a thing.
I the test myself. Let's just say I learned a lot.
97 (shout out to the sister station ZOK) Things You Should Know About Rockford Before You Can Call Yourself A True "Rockfordian."
1. You have to live or have lived in Rockford!
Not technically, but I'm counting 30 years in Loves Park as a yes. - 1
*2. You must go see a Rockford River Hawks game once.(they started as the Rockford Expo's, then the Rockford Royals, Rockford Cubbies, Rockford Reds and now the Rockford Riverhawks)
I think I've seen all of them. - 2
3. You must know that "A League of their Own" was about the Rockford Peaches.
*4. You must complain about how ugly the Metro Center is (BMO harris bank center).
5. You must talk about how cool the Coronado is.
"It's basically just a smaller version of the Chicago Theater." - 4
6. You must know what a Maid Rite is and like them.
My Maid Rite was next to the Blockbuster at Alpine and Riverside. - 5
7. You must complain about how long the lights are at East State and Alpine.
I literally wrote this blog 2 years ago. - 6
*8. You must know that Aiden Quinn's dad Michael Quin was a Professor at Rock Valley College.
I barely know who Aiden Quinn is.
9. You must know E.J. Giorgi's nickname was "Zeke" and try to have I-39 called "The Zeke" in the same way they call highways "The Ike" and "The Kennedy" in Chicago.
I recognize the name, but that's it. Do not remember any effort to colloquially call I-39 "The Zeke" but I'm going to start doing it immediately.
10. You must know that Charles Box may have been the mayor, but his family makes some of the best BBQ ever.
Well aware of both facts. - 7
11. You must know that the Rockford Register Star building is called "The News Tower."
It's always been a landmark. - 8
12. You have to know that Marinelli Field has the most bugs of any baseball field in the world.
I think I was too young when I went to Marinelli to be bothered by bugs.
13. You know people still call it "The Rockford Airport" despite renaming efforts.
It's a futile effort. - 9
14. You must have your picture taken by the Orange Thingy, known as Symbol
I've never done this. Maybe Dr. T will let me use the baby one in his backyard.
15. You must go see WWII re-enactments at Midway Village
I'm sure they do an excellent job, HOWEVER. Not only does the Civil War not interest me much but I also have no interest in seeing said war reenacted. I've heard they do a top-notch job though. Go see it if that's your thing.
16. Uncle Nicks Gyros at 2am
Not a fan of gyros in general but yes. - 10
*17. Order a beef & cheddar and or cheddar fries from Beef-A-Roo!
Here's a Rockford Hot Take. The onion rings at Beef-A-Roo are better than the cheese fries. - 11
18. Eat a tub of Mrs. Fisher’s Chips that are made in Rockford!
I don't think they mean in one sitting, but yes. - 12
*19. Went to Maria's on Cunningham
Prom night. - 13
20. Cheap Trick...need we say more!
You actually don't need to say more. - 14
*21. Ordered a Hi-Boy Burger at the old Hollywood's Restaurant
Remember Hollywood's, do not remember the Hi-Boy.
22. The old Alps drive-in on Charles Street
23. Going to Stockholm Inn for Swedish Pancakes with Lingonberries!
Literally just did this for the first time 2 months ago. Thanks, Double T. - 15
24. You have to know what an ERAB is?
I once wrote a blog ranking the NIC-10 mascots in the order I think I could kill them. It's probably my best work. - 16
25. Susan St. James, Barbara Hale, Ginger Lynn & Ira Matthews all came from Rockford
I only know who one of those people is and I'm NOT saying which one.
*26. Tinker Swiss Cottage
Do not tell Andrea from GoRockford.com or Laura from the Park District that I'm not really sure what, or where Tinker Cottage is. Is that the one that's haunted? I'm a bad Rockfordian.
27. The Sock Monkey originated in Rockford from the Red Healed Rockford Socks
Of course. - 17
28. Knowing whom Jane the Dinosaur is and lives at the Burpee Museum
Multiple field trips. - 18
29. Shopping at Union Hall in Loves Park or the one on East State Street
Fun fact. My sister got caught stealing a candy bar from there when she was like 7. Back then you could let your kids wander around department stores by themselves if they could get there on their bikes. It was one of the best days of my life. We had family over, grandparents, aunts, and uncles and my sister had to walk through all of them after everyone found out. It's my happy place. She has not committed a crime since. - 19
30. Bings Drive-In Restaurant, known for their waffle fries
Never been nor did I know about the waffle fries.
31. Where the Army Base, Camp Grant, was by the airport
If you couldn't tell by my Civil War opinions, I'm not much of a military buff.
32. Belford, River Lane, Sunset & the Robin Drive-in (especially the "dirty" movies at the Sunset Theater!) were they used to be
No idea on any of those.
33. Kiddyland on Forest Hills Road behind Woodward Governor
Never heard of it. Sounds dangerous. Wish I could have gone there.
34. Skeet’s Drive-in Restaurant
35. Prince Castle had the square ice cream scoops!
Were the tubs also square?
36. Have to know where the 5 Points intersection is
There are a few, but I've always referred to the intersection just north of Alpine and Harrison as 5-points. By the old Dairy Queen, now Da Catch. - 20
37. President Nixon & his wife were here when they were opening East State Street during his campaign.
I remember when Michael Dukakis came to Harlem.
38. Rockford is known as the screw capitol of the world! We manufacture more screws than anyone in the world!
I feel like screw-themed things have become more prevalent around town over the last decade. Discuss. - 21
39. Rally's Burgers was where Uncle Nick's is, on East State Street
Amazing fries. Second location in Loves Park. - 22
40. Nylint Toys were manufactured in Rockford
Pretty sure they used to give out toys at Lightning games. - 23
41. Testors Glue & Paint (model paint) was manufactured in Rockford
42. Ole Salty Potato Chips are made in Rockford.
Delicious. - 24
43. Rockettes Drive-In down on 15th Avenue and they had the biggest pork tenderloin sandwiches!
Sounds great, new to me.
44. Hamilton Sundstrand makes parts for the Space Shuttle for NASA
Oh yeah, big story when I was a kid. - 25
45. Rockford Ice Hogs...they are an affiliate of the Chicago Blackhawks
And recently purchased by the parent company. - 26
46. Rockford Lightning...Norm Van Leer was the coach
And Mauro Panaggio. And Charlie Rosen. And morning show guest Chris Daleo. - 27
*47 Geri's Hamburgers...had the best French fries in town
Does Beef-A-Roo know about this? I don't.
*48. 1981 the Rolling Stones came to the Metro Centre
I have the concert pin in my office. - 28
*49. Beaky's Drive-In on Auburn
Sounds like we used to have a TON of drive-ins.
50. Frank Sinatra played at the Metro Centre
To quote Johnny Carson "I did not know that."
51. Ing Roller skating Palace on North 2nd Street
Never went but know about it. - 29
52. Time Museum...known now as the Clock Tower
Right next to Bellamy's, right? - 30
53. Faust Hotel & Towers – Al Capon stayed here & when JFK was campaigning he stayed at the Faust Hotel; was considered like a Ritz/Carlton
First I'm hearing of this.
*54. Paris Bennett is from Rockford (American Idol)
If it isn't Clay Aiken or Adam Lambert, I don't know American Idols.
*55. Martha Quinn from MTV broadcast live from Rick Nielsen's house in the 80's
See my above note about Aiden.
56. Mr. Mustache was part of Rockford history, on channel 23...had the huff & puff game.
This was decades before legalization too. - 31
57. Rockford had 2 Daily Newspapers.... Rockford Morning Star (came in the morning) and the Rockford Register Republic (in the afternoon) and they combined them to what we know now as the Rockford Register Star
Only knew about the Register Star.
58. President Teddy Roosevelt came to Rockford & dedicated Memorial Hall back in 1903"ish" was the first kind ever built for Veterans of War
Wherever most people store President facts in their brain, I put something entirely different inside. Not sure what, but it's not President facts.
59. Abraham Lincoln served as a lawyer in Rockford during the John Manney & McCormack
60. Bill Murray and "Ground Hogs Day" movie filmed driving off the cliffs at Nimtz Quarry
I know roughly 50,000 more Bill Murray facts than President facts. - 32
61. Lacey Underall from "Caddy Shack" used to work at WROK doing overnights
I run the station and didn't know this.
62. The Concord landed at the Rockford Airport and took off one time!
I only know this because Riley got to do this. - 33
63. Blue Suede shoes and the Poison Apple
Literally just learned about barber chair shots yesterday. - 34
64. The Ambassadors of Rockford are the Phantom Regiment Drum & Bugle Corp
They rehearsed 300 yards from my house. - 35
65. You had to pay a toll of a dime to cross the Riverside bridge
Didn't know about this toll. I do remember the 50 cent Harlem bridge toll that is also now gone.
66. Rockford was known as the 2nd largest city in Illinois...we were bumped by Aurora
Joliet and Naperville have since bumped us to 5th. - 36
67. Known as the Forest City
Obviously. - 37
68. The oldest tree in Rockford is on the North East Corner of Spring Creek & Alpine
Across from the church and the mansion? Is it still there?
69. Kishwaukee River is one of two rivers in the world that actually flows north instead of south!
Fascinating. Did not know this. Will probably write a blog about it soon.
70. Estwing Hammers are made in Rockford (blue handled hammers)
They look cool! This is honestly about 50% of why I would buy a tool. - 38
71. Kegel Harley Davidson is one of the oldest Harley Dealers
We're splitting hairs on what "oldest" means but yes. - 39
72. Jodi Benson, the voice of Ariel from The Little Mermaid is from Rockford, went to Boylan High School
I remember her performing on Nickelodeon and being pretty excited. - 40
73. The Green Flash Newspaper, and it cost a nickel!
Was that a lot back then?
74. The Last Straw Ice Cream on South Alpine
My great-grandmother loved this place. Or maybe she just liked taking me there? Probably both. - 41
75. The Cobblestone is the oldest house in Rockford
Another new fact and possible future blog.
76. Michelle Williams, from Destiny's Child, is from Rockford
Scrubs is a BANGER - 42
77. Rockford Dry Goods Department Store
I don't know what you would buy at this place.
78. Toad Hall on Broadway
Shamefully, I've never been.
79. The Root beer Barrel Restaurant...little drive-in by the airport which is now the Machesney Park Mall
To quote DJ Khaled, regarding former Stateline drive-ins I've never heard of. "Another one."
80. Oprah Winfrey was on Dialing for Dollars $$ on Channel 13.
I remember OptiFast but not this.
81. John B. Anderson from Rockford ran for President in 1980
President fact? Not for me.
82. Rollie Sponberg, used to do a magic trick when he did the weather on Channel 13
Nope, but I'm gonna need Joey Marino to start doing this ASAP.
83. Arlans Discount was on Sandy Hollow & 11th Street
Another store that I'm not sure what they were selling.
84. Top Hat Restaurant
A Loves Park institution. The Jurys are good people. - 43
85. The Airbrush was invented & mass-produced in Rockford a little over 100 years ago. The company was called Rockford Airbrush and was located in the building that used to stand across the street from the downtown library.
So Rockford's responsible for horrible t-shirts all across malls in the 90s? Pretty impressive.
86. Anderson Gardens
I might be legally required to call this a hidden gem. - 44
87. The Grinder Shop Restaurant, served Ingersol Burgers
I feel like this might be tangentially related to Latham Tap but not sure.
*88. Danica Patrick, NASCAR driver is from Rockford area (actually roscoe)
Kind of a touchy subject. - 45
89. Chad Knauss, from Rockford, is the crew chief for Jimmy Johnson
That sounds very impressive.
90. Mark Martin used to race at the Rockford Speedway
I've heard of him.
91. Nicole Manski went to Hononegah High School and is an ESPN reporter for NASCAR
She's now Nicole Briscoe and is one of the top talents at ESPN. She and Randy Scott are the best duo going right now. - 46
92. Deerys are one of the few speedway owners that still own their property
I went to school with Mike. - 47
93. Roddy Mack Show
I have no idea what this means.
94. The Parrot in the basement of Goldblatts Dept. Store
95. Ted Nugent played at the Rockford Speedway and could be heard all the way to the Rockford Airport.
Don't remember it, but I'm shocked that The Nuge would do something super annoying.
*96. Chiclets were made at Warner Lambert
Friend's dad worked at Warner Lambert and always had tons of gum on him. Big key to being popular when you're 12. - 48
97. Winnebago County Fair used to be at Fairgrounds Park.
I honestly couldn't tell you where they currently are now.
Ooph. 48/97. Sub 50%. Please respect my privacy as I try to be more "Rockfordian" in the future.
How'd you do? What would you add?
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