The late legendary singer Johnny Cash rode the “train song” genre through his career until he ran out of track. One of his songs lamented the passing of the American passenger train as the main mode of transportation. “In this fast-moving world that we live in, nobody rides them much these days,” he sang. If… Continue reading.
Long before electric cooperatives began stringing silver strands of singing wire across rural America in the 1930s, the rhythmic chatter of windmills performed many of the tasks needed to make America grow. Every farm, ranch and railroad stop had those mechanical marvels of wood and steel blades and fins to pump water and do other… Continue reading.
Hoosier musical artist John Mellencamp has achieved international fame for over 40 years punching out a unique brand of rootsy rock’n’roll. Mellencamp’s radio-station standards — like “Hurts So Good,” “Jack and Diane,” “Pink Houses,” “Small Town,” and “Rain on the Scarecrow” — have ranged from catchy Top 40 tunes about teenage romance and rebellion to… Continue reading.
In the hush across Indiana’s wintry hinterlands soon will come a tap, tap, tapping and a drip, drip, dripping as the days get longer and warmer. That’s the sound of spring a-coming. That’s the sound of maple syrup season. As sap starts running up from the trunks of maple trees this time of year, Hoosiers… Continue reading.
Who doesn’t love the opening of “A Charlie Brown’s Christmas”? Giant puffy snowflakes float from the sky; the Peanuts gang is out skating on a glistening frozen pond. But if you grew up in the lower three-quarters of Indiana, chances are you probably never experienced the exhilaration or beauty of skating all bundled up outdoors… Continue reading.
By Richard G. Biever If words and phrases like: “You’ll shoot your eye out” “Triple-dog dare” “Fragil-ee” and “Oh, fuuuuuudge!!” immediately bring smiles to your face and visions of BBs ricocheting in your head, have we found a home for you this holiday season! Hammond’s “‘A Christmas Story’ Comes Home” is a holiday exhibit and… Continue reading.
The simplicity of a “Currier and Ives Christmas” may seem long ago and far away. But it can be as near as your breath in the frosty air before you if you plan to spend just a little time in Shipshewana this holiday season. The northern Indiana town and the surrounding LaGrange County, home to… Continue reading.
By Richard G. Biever Haunted houses and creepy corn mazes are crawling with chain-saw slinging Jasons, razor-fingered Freddy Kruegers, and other gory ghouls from Hollywood this time of year. But as you might expect from a living history museum, Conner Prairie digs a little deeper into American fright night folklore to scare up its brand… Continue reading.
Two-lane highways steadily brought people to Dillsboro over the first half of the 20th century. Then interstates sped them away. What remains of the small southeastern Indiana town, like so many rural towns everywhere, are empty buildings, fading photos, memories — and dreams for a revival that still flicker within. Now, a Smithsonian-curated traveling exhibit,… Continue reading.
BY NICK ROGERS A 19th-century description of Indiana’s 13,000-acre Limberlost Swamp advised visitors against a “treacherous … quagmire, filled with every plant, animal and human danger known.” Such strong words would warn off most. Thankfully, Gene Stratton-Porter had quite a few of her own to write about Limberlost. In its environs, the Wabash County native… Continue reading.
BY NICK ROGERS Spring Mill State Park boasts the usual activities, campsites and trails (eight to be exact, ranging from 1/3 to 2½ miles). But most parks don’t serve food using cornmeal made from an active, 202-year-old mill. And you’d be hard-pressed to find NASA spacecraft near nature elsewhere. On 1,358 acres about 3 miles… Continue reading.
BY NICK ROGERS Satisfy your sense of adventure by exploring southern Indiana’s cave systems! Formed several million years ago as water dissolved limestone, these systems feature underground streams, bountiful biodiversity and awe-inspiring formations. They’re a preservation of Indiana history, a presentation of nature’s splendor and a perfect road trip! Below are details for four sites… Continue reading.