Steuben Co. Indiana Torch Relay
It’s Sunday October 2, 2016. So many memories come for me with Indiana’s Bicentennial. When I was 6 years old my family and I went to a special bicentennial celebration for our country. My little sister and I got to wear long dresses and bonnets just like our first settlers. I still remember watching my shadow and wishing I could wear an outfit like that every day as. My family and I walked to the big church picnic in Bloomington, Indiana—my sister and I taking short turns pushing our baby brother in his stroller before being distracted again by our shadows. At church everyone was wearing period costumes, playing games, and eating tons of great potluck. It’s a memory I’ll never forget.
Little did I know, just 40 short years later I’d be helping Indiana celebrate it’s bicentennial too. Trying to explain the torch relay to my 5 year old hasn’t held the same mystique for him as the great experience I had when I was his age.
“Indiana’s turning 200,” I told him.
He looked at me blankly. “Why?”
“Well it just is. It’s very old now and we’re holding a birthday party for it.”
“Will it get presents?”
I considered telling him about the gift of the new buffalo statue by the new public restrooms in downtown Angola, but answers must be kept short with ADHD 5 year olds.
“No, but people are going to run with something like a big birthday candle.”
He looked at me skeptically. “That does not sound safe.”
I smiled. “This one time it will be all right…and there will be cake.”
He brightened at that and all in all has been a very good sport in the 5 hours it took for me to shoot the torch relay.
Twenty torchbearers have now escorted the flame from Trine Recreational Area to Pokagon State Park, where it circled the area in a seaplane piloted by Randy Strebig. (You see, I did find a way to work in some seaplane footage after last week’s fiasco!) A short ceremony has followed in which it was pointed out to Tourism Director June Julien that we get to celebrate another bicentennial, this time for Steuben County, in just 21 more years. By then maybe my son will bring his children to a celebration event. But for now he’s just happy to be eating (and wearing) a bicentennial blue iced cupcake!
Enjoy the video of the day’s highlights.