Adventures Had and Memories Made – The Schiffli Family

Posted by on 12:04 pm in Family Fun, Steuben County Indiana, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Pokagon State Park and the Potawatomi Inn beach When it gets really hot, sometimes you just want to go swimming and that’s exactly what we all did! Luckily, we can choose from several places to swim here in Steuben County but on this particular day, we chose Potawatomi Inn beach at Pokagon State Park. We packed a picnic lunch and went to enjoy the water. Emi and Mak are both little fish and even though they can’t swim on their own quite yet, they both love the water. They had a great time building sand castles and splashing in the water on this hot day....

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Adventures Had and Memories Made – The Schiffli Family, Steuben County, Indiana

Posted by on 3:41 pm in Family Fun, Steuben County Indiana, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Hamilton 4th of July parade and Angola’s festivities Every year, our family looks forward to 4th of July festivities in the various towns and cities in Steuben County. The first celebration we went to was Hamilton’s parade, which was actually the Saturday before Independence Day. We also went to the Angola’s parade and festivities on the Fourth. The girls and I were lucky enough to be with AMC Marine Sales & Service in both parades and it’s amazing how many cool floats there are and how many people attend! You constantly hear people in the crowd scream your name, but you just can’t see them because there are SO MANY PEOPLE! At Commons Park they have events immediately following the parade. Hot dog giveaways, sky divers, games and bounce houses are just a few of the fun things they had at the park. Later in the evening they have bands playing and then to round out the night they had a spectacular fireworks display. It was a long 4th of July, but it was full of fun and memories that we all will...

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Our Town’s History – Lou Ann Homan

Posted by on 11:28 am in History, Steuben County Indiana, Uncategorized | 0 comments

The note came in the middle of January. At first I thought it was a scam email offering me a million dollars if I were to send out my social security number and my bank routing information. The subject line was in large print: MEREDITH. Curiosity does funny things, and while I secretly wish the Duke of Any Country would find me a great recipient and care taker of money, I know better. But, one never knows. I open the email. I blink and read it twice before I realize the weight of the note, the importance of the note and how it was worth more than the million dollars offered to me by the Duke. Meredith writes that she and her mother, both from the Phoenix area, are descendants of the Hendry family and they would like to know more about them. She came across my writings of Louisa Gale Hendry through KPC. I actually sat quietly for a few moments letting this story sink in for me. It is no secret that I love my town and the history behind it. During the Angola Carnegie Library Centennial Celebration I portrayed Louisa Gale Hendry at the library. I loved researching her and learning all I could with the help of Peg Dilbone, our county historian. I wrote back immediately. We chatted through a few more emails until I got the note that she and her mother Yvonne and sister Claudia would come here to Angola to see their family history with their own eyes. I took my note up to the library and found Peg, as usual, working away. We sat knee to knee talking about this event. Peg had already made a list of all the places we should go. Even Peg’s list made my head swim a little. “We can’t possibly do all of that in two days!” I remarked to her. But Peg has an uncanny way of raising her eyebrows to adversity. I just had to smile. A few more emails, a few more months and the day has come. I want the day to be beautiful with blue skies, wispy clouds, and a cool breeze coming off of our 101 lakes. It is not to be so. It is gray and rainy with a high humidity, but nothing could daunt away the excitement I feel in meeting the Hendrys. There is so much to show them and so many stories to tell them. Peg and I meet them at the Potawatami Inn, they are staying at Pokagon, for breakfast. When I arrive there are two large gifts bags at the table of three women. Who needs the sunshine where there are three smiling Hendry women? We become instant friends talking a mile a minute, all of us. Peg tells stories. I tell stories. They tell stories. They put a photo of Yvonne’s mother on the table as a mascot. She is beautiful. We sit for two hours talking over coffee. They buy our breakfasts and give us the gifts from their home in Phoenix. Finally we make a plan. We will do a drive through of Angola. They arrived late in the evening and have not even seen the town yet. I am bursting with excitement as if it were Christmas morning with...

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Steuben County Farmers Market

Posted by on 11:13 am in Events, Family Fun, Food, Steuben County Indiana, Uncategorized | 0 comments

The Steuben County Farmers Market is definitely the place where everybody knows your name, and you never want to miss a single Saturday. When the market first opens in the spring there isn’t much in the way of vegetables. Perhaps a few stalks of asparagus or barely enough rhubarb to make a pie, and sometimes I even leave with an empty basket, but it doesn’t matter. Finally the weather warms, we put away our hats and gloves and greet our neighbors and local farmers once more. Up and down the aisle at the Community Center parking lot laughter can be heard as stories are told and folks lament about the long winter. (It always has been a long winter!) We ask about families, and of course, we ask about crops and the land. Because we are a rural community, much conversation can be heard talking about soil and water conditions. “Will this be a good year for tomatoes?” “When do you think you will have sweet corn?” “That sure was a long winter this year.” “Did you get the peas out, Edna?” On the first day of the market I get out my twenty dollar bill, my basket, and walk on over to be part of this community. As the day light grows longer, and the soil warms, more and more vegetables arrive at the market. Now there are early zucchinis, radishes, yellow squashes, and new onions. Of course the honey folks, the Dalrymple, are always there with their jars of honey and their honey sticks. They are a favorite with the children and usually have a few dozen farm fresh eggs tucked away in a cooler under their table. (But you better get there early or the eggs will be gone!) As the lazy days of summer arrive so does the sweet corn. It usually arrives by the truck load and the Holmans sell right out of the bed of the truck. Ralph and Colleen are staples at the farmers market, and I can think of more than one occasion when they have delivered my goods to the house when they wouldn’t fit in my bike basket. With my twenty dollar bill I can fill my basket with rose water from Amy Oberlin (by this time next year I will look twenty years younger), cucumbers, tomatoes, squash, a bracelet, and sometimes I can even find space for a hand-hooked rug. I will have ordered my fire wood to be delivered and made coffee dates! By now, in the middle of the summer, the market is held twice a week. Wednesday mornings find our farmers and craft folks all lined up at Monument Plaza in Angola. Parking is easy there and it is not usually so crowded. If you want fresh peaches though, you better go early! When I have out of town guests there are many activities they want to partake in…they want to go out to Pokagon, or to the Brokaw, or even pick up a Yoga class in the park this summer, but everyone takes their turn at the Steuben County Farmers Market. We might not have the fanciest coffees or luxurious croissants, but I guarantee you this, after a few visits everyone will know your name, and you will feel like you are...

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Vermont Settlement Festival

Posted by on 10:56 am in Events, Family Fun, History, Steuben County Indiana, Uncategorized | 0 comments

I grew up in Orland, Ind., and remember enjoying the annual Vermont Settlement Festival. Everything from eating a funnel cake with lots of powdered sugar (that mostly ended up all over my face and on my clothing), to being on a parade float and throwing candy are special memories. I remember pushing the bulls-eye on a dunk tank and watching the local grocery store owner fall into a tub of ice cold water. The annual festival is full of family fun and things to do for people of all ages and stages in life. Even as a college student who lived away from home, I always made time to come home for this annual event and often brought my friends. In my younger years friends from home paired with college friends to make a team for long-time festival favorites like the mud volleyball competition. We also enjoyed the evening activities like the live bands and action at the Draft Horse. Other times it was nice to just relax under a tree at the town park to listen to a band and eat homemade warm peach cobbler topped with ice cream. Orland isn’t a big town. Frankly, it’s something you would see in a movie like Hoosiers. Booming with industry and innovation behind the residential portions of the town, Orland has a rich history and tradition, but more than anything it has a feeling of the “good old days” when life was simpler. Nestled along the Fawn River in the northwestern portion of Steuben County, Orland is known as the birthplace of Steuben County. In 1834 early settlers originally referred to it as the “Vermont Settlement” because they were immigrants from Vermont. Town founder John Stocker had gone prospecting for his family and neighbors. Stocker chose the area because of the burr-oak trees and streams of the Fawn River. More pioneers coming from Windham County, Vermont arrived shortly thereafter and built a Baptist church. The early settlers named the town Orland after the hymn called “Orland”. Orland is recognized as the first settlement in Steuben County. Each year in late July, Orland celebrates this heritage with the Vermont Settlement Festival. This year the festival is July 29-30 and the theme is “Orland – A Place Where Friends Meet”. The annual festival features lots of great food, a crafter and vendor market, musical entertainment and a primitive interpretive village that depicts pre-1840 life. Most activities take place at the Orland Town Park, with a few events at other locations in town. Festival goers can eat Mister Bratz’s famous brats fresh off the grill coupled with ribbon fries made by Prairie Heights football players and Denver Booth’s famous homemade ice cream. If your craving for meat is on the lighter side, you can get some of the BBQ chicken fresh from the local farms of Miller Poultry. One hallmark of the festival is the parade Saturday at 11 a.m. The parade starts in the heart of downtown Orland and ends at the town park. Events throughout the weekend include an inflatable zone for kids and a petting zoo with pig races. Adults can listen to bands like Cactus, who will liven things with a variety of rock and country, or lighter sounds like the Wasepi Bluegrass Gospel Singers. For the mighty and...

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Bon Appetit – Gunthrop Farms Pork Chop with Maple Mustard Glaze

Posted by on 2:03 pm in Food, Recipes, Steuben County Indiana, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Bon Appetit, on the campus of Trine University in Angola, provides students and staff members with authentic, fresh meals made from scratch. Try the following recipe from Chef Todd Downs. Gunthrop Farms Pork Chop with Maple Mustard Glaze Brine Ingredients: 1 qt. water 1/2 cup kosher salt 1/4 cup brown sugar 2 T garlic, chopped 1 T peppercorns, crushed 2 sprigs fresh thyme 2 sprigs fresh rosemary 4 1 inch thick pork chops Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a simmer. Simmer five minutes, keeping the temperature between 185 – 200 F. Cool completely. Submerge pork into the brine. Brine in the refrigerator for 24 hours. Glaze ingredients: 1 cup pure maple syrup 1/2 cup whole grain mustard Prepare grill, heated to medium high. Blot pork dry and brush both sides with oil. Season both sides of the chops with kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper. For the glaze: Combine the maple syrup and whole grain mustard. Simmer over low hear until slightly thickened (approximately 10 minutes.) Brush on meat and grill until done. The internal temperature of pork should be 145 F. Also featured in the photo: Cavatelli pasta with portabella mushrooms and fresh chopped herbs as well as radicchio cut into wedges and dressed with olive oil and balsamic...

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Potawatomi Poutine

Posted by on 11:18 am in Food, Recipes, Steuben County Indiana, Uncategorized | 0 comments

If you have never tried poutine you are missing out! It’s to Quebec what hamburgers are to……well, practically anywhere in the United States. So what is poutine? Think of the perfect union between crispy golden fries, cheesy goodness and rich gravy. In a word–YUM! There are as many varieties as there are people who make the Canadian dish. Now Chef Johnny at the Potawatomi Inn Restaurant has put his own spin on the poutine and turned it into an appetizer-though truth be told, it could be a meal in itself. He has added smoked port and his own secret gravy recipe to the dish. While he will not give away what is in it, we did get the basics of how to assemble the dish. Deep fry or bake your favorite french fries. Layer them on a plate and add a layer of cheese curds (meat is optional.) Johnny uses smoked pork, but bacon works well too. Smother in brown gravy and top with green onions. Or just stop by the Potawatomi Inn at Pokagon State Park and order...

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The Hangout’s Cod Cakes

Posted by on 3:22 pm in Food, Recipes, Steuben County Indiana, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Although the name has changed, the traditional laid-back atmosphere at The Hangout Bar and Grill on Snow Lake remains. The former Dave’s Lake Shack has new owners who will continue offering popular menu items as well as live music Wednesday and Friday evenings. Local favorites Island Vibe and Jim Weber are slated to perform throughout the summer. The Hangout, located at 1865 W. State Road 120, can be reached by car or boat. The restaurant’s theme is “much more than bar food” and is open six days a week from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Only breakfast is served on Sunday. Build your own omelet or choose from corned beef hash, eggs benedict, biscuits and gravy or apple flavored pancakes for a filling breakfast. Appetizers-including pickle fries-complement any meal, while wings, soups and salads offer traditional hearty fare. The Hangout is decorated with lake memorabilia and is the perfect place to savor fish and chips or a butterfly shrimp basket. Enjoy sitting on the big patio in the summer with a thick burger or a variety of Mexican dishes. The Hangout’s cod cakes are a crowd favorite you can enjoy at home: 1 small onion, chopped 8 sprigs parsley, chopped 2 cups mashed potatoes 2 beaten eggs 3 T melted butter 1 lb. steamed and flaked cod 3/4 cup seasoned bread crumbs 1/3 cup light olive oil salt and pepper Mix onion, parsley, butter, potatoes and eggs. Break cod apart into flakes and mix with the above. Shape the mixture into patties. Coat with bread crumbs. Pour oil into a skillet and heat until it sizzles. Add patties and fry for four to five minutes on each side until golden...

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Tree Planting

Posted by on 3:12 pm in Nature, Steuben County Indiana, Uncategorized | 0 comments

My doorbell rings even though the hour is still early. Coffee sits on my dining room table with the newspaper spread out in front of me reading about folks I know and those I don’t. I scramble to the door knowing who is there before I answer. Most of my friends just walk on in, so it has to be the kids from Angola Middle School. I hear their laughter and chattering before I even get to the door. And there they are. They are smiling from ear to ear, and so am I! It is Arbor Day in Angola, and they are here to plant my free tree from the City. “The tree is around back, I’ll meet you there,” I say, and all twenty students take off running to the backyard. I hurry to grab my jacket and meet them there in the early morning light with my camera tucked into my pocket. I think this is my fifth year to be the recipient of a free tree from the Angola Tree Board. The announcement always comes in the water bill, and the first 100 folks to call gets the trees. This year I called early enough to get the pink dogwood. I love this gift from my city even if it is getting a bit crowded in my yard. Mr. Hottell’s students all chatter at once. “Ooohhh…I love your house…I love your yard…I love your garden.” I smile at them thinking all the while how nice it is that this group of enthusiastic students appreciate this old house and the beauty it resonates. They gather together for a photo to capture the moment. They think it is just a picture of a bunch of kids planting a tree, but it is so much more than that. The photo captures such sweet joy and hope on their faces in the morning light. The students dig the hole while Mr. Hottell cuts off the burlap as the rest of us talk. I tell them about the other trees, and they listen with fascination. “This service berry tree is from the city. Students planted it a few years ago. The folk lore says that when this tree blooms it is time to bury the dead.” The students look at me wide-eyed as if I am making this up. I laugh at them and tell them not to worry, there are no dead folks in my garage. I point out the flowering redbud which is still pretty in purple and tell them students planted that one too. Once the tree is planted they take turns stomping the dirt down around it and ask for water to give it a good drink. I point them in the direction of my rain barrel. It was great fun watching them get water from the barrel. It is my opportunity to point out other environmental factors in my yard. “And there is my clothesline and my bike. I go without a car at least three days a week,” I tell them. I point out the herb garden, vegetable garden, and the berry patch. One girl tells a story of a pine tree her folks planted when she was a baby. They moved away so she doesn’t know how big it is now. I smile...

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Caruso’s Coconut Cream Pie

Posted by on 3:00 pm in Food, Recipes, Steuben County Indiana, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Continuing a tradition that began more than 40 years ago, Caruso’s serves genuine Italian cuisine in a family-friendly atmosphere. In 1976, Joe and Barb Caruso purchased the popular Doc Caccomo’s Pizzeria and realized their dream of owning a restaurant. Joe was the cook, with Barb working in the dining room as a waitress and hostess. As their children grew, they performed various jobs in the restaurant. Today, three of the Caruso children own and operate the restaurant on County Road 200 West in Angola. In fact, two of them recently earned degrees in Culinary Arts. Some of their children, now the third generation of Caruso’s, also work at the restaurant. Caruso’s in one of eight restaurants featured in the Northern Indiana Lakes Country Foodie Trail, compiled by the editors of Midwest Living. Serving old traditional Italian recipes as well as the latest trends, Caruso’s is a favorite among residents and visitors. The recently opened full-service dine-in bar serves specialty appetizers such as salmon dip, smoked mussels and Rosemary spiced nuts. Wines from Napa, Argentina, France and Australia are served along with locally-grown Satek Winery wines. Pizza is a favorite at Caruso’s and the recipe has remained the same for 40 plus years: house-made crust, traditional pizza sauce, quality meats, fresh vegetables and a custom mozzarella blend. You can also create your own pizza with traditional toppings plus pineapple, meatballs or garlic mashed potatoes. Torpedoughs, stuffed with fresh vegetables, meats, sauces and cheese, are baked to a golden brown. The breadsticks, basted with house-roasted garlic butter sauce, are a great start to any meal. Dinner choices include classic spaghetti, traditional lasagna, stuffed shells, fettuccini clam sauce and shrimp pasta. Top off your meal with a slice of coconut or banana cream pie, cannoli, lemon blueberry mascarpone cake or a spumoni sundae. A gluten-free menu is available and Caruso’s strives to use the freshest ingredients from local farm-to-table vendors. All menu items are free of MSG and high-fructose corn syrup. For more information,  http://www.carusos-restaurant.com Caruso’s Coconut Cream Pie 2 cups milk 3/4 cup cream of coconut 1/4 cup corn starch 1/8 tsp. salt 3 eggs, separated 1 tsp. vanilla 1 tbsp. butter 1 1/4 cup coconut Combine milk, cream of coconut, corn starch and salt.  Stir to dissolve corn starch.  Cook on medium high heat, stirring constantly.  Boil 2-3 minutes or until thick.  Remove from heat.  Slowly add beaten egg yolks, stirring as quickly as possible.  Cook an additional 2-3 minutes on medium heat.  Add butter and vanilla, then coconut.  Spread in pie shell of your choice and chill.  Caruso’s serves theirs with whipped cream on top and a sprig of fresh...

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