Under Rocks

Remember when you were a kid and turned over rocks in your backyard? You never knew what treasures you might find. That's what we want to do in WNIJ's backyard. For our project "Under Rocks," we need your help to identify these unexplored oddities and neglected anomalies in northern Illinois. Your hosts will leave no stone unturned! 

Send us your ideas here: rocks@niu.edu

Theme music by Bensound

The coldest, snowiest, most miserable time of year means one thing for many of the hardiest folk in Wisconsin – time to drag your ice auger and a bucket of shiners out onto the nearest lake.


Old Places, New Spaces | Under Rocks Podcast

Jan 15, 2021
Jason Cregier

Another year, another dozen opportunities to explore what’s cool, what’s interesting, what’s weird in your own backyard. It’s Under Rocks, where you help us send our adventurous correspondents out to discover those hidden gems in northern Illinois. This time, Jason Cregier and Dan Libman, with a big assist from tech giant Spencer Tritt, visit with some of the people who transform Old Places into New Spaces.

Spencer Tritt / WNIJ

On this episode of Under Rocks, we don't turn over any stones, but we take you face-to-face with a massive chunk of concrete along an Ogle County roadside.

A Simpler Time Before 'Quarancuts' | Under Rocks Podcast

May 14, 2020
Spencer Tritt / WNIJ

On the second episode of the Under Rocks podcast, host Dan Libman, tech wiz Spencer Tritt and WNIJ correspondent Jason Cregier visited the Shabbona Barber and Hot Shave Parlor in Shabbona, Illinois, where Jason would receive the closest shave of his life.

This was back in late February, before the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic swept across Illinois. Now the thought of getting a haircut, let alone a close shave, seems almost foreign.

Francie Barnes and friend

On our inaugural Under Rocks podcast: We celebrate the weirdness of winter in northern Illinois. Dan Libman and Susan Stephens hit the slopes (the sled slopes), pedal icy backroads, traipse through freshly-fallen snow with a trail groomer, and find out just what that brand new mountain in the middle of a DeKalb park is made of.

Grab your mittens and hop on!

Highlights of this episode: It's a wintry mix!

Your favorite local sledding spots.

We visit two of your favorite sled hills in DeKalb County: Russell Woods and Hopkins Park.