By William W. Gray
Whitewater Valley Railroad
Travel Through Time On Indiana’s Most Scenic Railroad.
The Whitewater Valley Railroad (WVRR), an authentic, historic train offering recreational train excursions and events, opens for its 42nd operating season in 2015.
Established in 1972, the WVRR is a nonprofit 501c3 railroad history organization. It is an operating railroad museum dedicated to the preservation of a historic branch line railroad, the restoration of railroad equipment, and to the conduct of railroad educational programs.
The railroad is operated by trained volunteers and all proceeds are used to further the organization’s mission.
Ride the Whitewater Limited or Valley Flyer from Connersville to Metamora, Indiana, a restored canal town. Visit the working grist mill, restored canal and lock, operating replica horse drawn canal boat, historic covered aqueduct, and over 40 shops and restaurants.
Trains consisting of vintage equipment depart Connersville’s Grand Central Station at 10:01 am on Thursdays and Friday’s and 12:01 pm on Saturdays, Sundays, and major holidays, during the month of May. The Valley Flyer also operates each Saturday, Sunday, and Holiday May through October.
To celebrate National Train Day on May 9, 2015, Abraham Lincoln will be riding the Whitewater Valley Railroad between Connersville and Historic Metamora.
President Abraham Lincoln, in July of 1862, signed the Pacific Railroad Bill that put the federal government behind the building of the Transcontinental Railroad project. The Transcontinental Railroad was completed on May 10, 1869. Travel through time on The Statesman as you spend the day with the 16th President Abraham Lincoln on a relaxing train excursion through the Whitewater Valley.
Ask the former president questions and have your photos taken to preserve the memories. Listen to Mr. Lincoln as he delivers a memorable speech before the train departs Metamora for the return to Connersville and during the trip Mr. Lincoln will be speaking about the railroads and their effects on his election. Festivities with Abraham Lincoln re-enactor Dean Dorrell will begin at 10:00 AM at Connersville’s Grand Central Station. The Statesman also operates August 8, September 12, and October 10, 2015.
All Aboard with a western twist and join the Circle D Rangers as they protect the Metamora bound Overland Limited on Saturday May 16, 2015. Come and see Bandits, Marshals, Robber Barons, Fancy and some Not So Fancy Women as you roll through the scenic countryside. Trains depart Connersville’s Grand Central Station at 12:01 pm. All donations during the train robbery benefit St. Jude’s and Riley Children Hospitals. The Overland Limited also operates July 18, August 15, September 12, and October 17 & 18, 2015.
Cost for the above listed 33-mile round trip excursions is $22 for adults and $14 for children ages 2 to 12. Groups are welcome with group rates of 30 or more. Special school rates are also available.
The popular Twilight Limited Train To Dinner will return Friday in May 1 at 6 pm. This train takes riders from Connersville to the Laurel Hotel Restaurant for a delicious pan-fried chicken dinner and other home-cooked meals. The Train To Dinner operates on the first and third Fridays at 6 pm from May through October. Total cost for the train ride, meal, tax and tip is $32 for adults and $17 for children ages 2 to 12. Reservations are required for the Twilight Limited Train To Dinner.
Also returning in 2015 is the popular Wild West Train To Dinner. a special Wild West-themed Twilight Limited Train to Dinner excursion. Come and see Bandits, Marshals, Robber Barons, Fancy and some Not So Fancy Women as you roll through the scenic countryside. The Wild West entertainment is being provided by the Circle D Rangers.
This excursion departs on Friday May 29, 2015 at 6pm from Connersville’s Grand Central Station. Fares are $39 per person and include the round trip train ride, the meal, tax and tip. Train operates rain or shine. Seating is limited and reservations are required for this exciting evening trip. Other dates for the Wild West Train To Dinner include July 31, August 28, and October 30, 2015.
Call (765) 825-2054 for more information and reservations or visit the Whitewater Valley Railroad’s web site at www.whitewatervalleyrr.org and follow us on Facebook. Connersville’s Grand Central Station is located across from the Fayette County Courthouse at 455 Market Street, Connersville, Indiana.
By John Dedman
Indiana Sports Corporation
Eighteen youth-serving organizations throughout Indiana have been selected as Susan Williams CHAMPS (Champions in Life) Grant recipients, awarded annually by Indiana Sports Corp.
Susan Williams CHAMPS Grants support organizations that provide underserved youth with the opportunity to participate in sports, fitness activities and life skills programming. The Susan Williams CHAMPS Grants are funded by the net proceeds of the annual Youthlinks Indiana Charity Golf Tournament and contributions by Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield Foundation, Samerian Foundation, and United Water.
In September of 2012, Indiana Sports Corp renamed the CHAMPS Grant Program to the Susan Williams CHAMPS Grant program. The renaming recognizes the significant contributions of Susan Williams, who retired as the president of Indiana Sports Corp after more than seven years in the position. At Indiana Sports Corp, Williams made impacting the lives of youth a priority, helping to grow the number of youth influenced by Sports Corp programming significantly.
“Indiana Sports Corp’s mission includes encouraging opportunities for the young people in our community,” said Ryan Vaughn, Indiana Sports Corp president. The ability to support organizations that teach life skills and promote fitness through sports is a key initiative in fulfilling that mission. We greatly appreciate what these organizations do for young people each and every day, and we are proud to contribute to their impact.”
This year, grants have been awarded to organizations serving youth in the following Indiana counties: Boone, Clay, Delaware, Dubois, Hamilton, Hancock, Harrison, Hendricks, Jefferson, Johnson, Lake, Lawrence, Marion, Morgan, Monroe, Madison, Morgan, Putnam, Randolph, Shelby, Vigo, Wayne, and Whitley.
Since 1988, Youthlinks Indiana has generated more than $6.5 million that have been reinvested to support various youth sports programs and initiatives. A total of 230 youth-serving organizations have received more than $2 million in CHAMPS Grants since 1988. This year’s Susan Williams CHAMPS Grants are divided among 18 organizations that serve 5,374 youth.
The 28th Annual Youthlinks Indiana Charity Golf Tournament, hosted by Indiana Sports Corp, tees off on Monday, June 22 at the Sagamore Golf Club of Noblesville, Ind. The tournament will consist of morning and afternoon shotgun tee times. Teams will compete in a scramble-style tournament over the 18-hole course. Youthlinks Indiana is presented by CNO Financial Group.
The Sagamore Golf Club was designed by PGA Tour legend Jack Nicklaus and previously was a Top Ten Best New Private Courses in America by Golf Digest. For more information and to register for this year’s Youthlinks Indiana, contact Craig Lippincott at (317) 237-5034 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Additional event information can be found at www.IndianaSportsCorp.org.
In 2014 alone, Indiana Sports Corp impacted 118,000 youth through programming such as Susan Williams CHAMPS Grants, the Geared for Health: Sports Equipment for Kids program, youth clinics, and other initiatives.
2015 Susan Williams CHAMPS Grant Recipients
Agape Therapeutic Riding Resources, Inc. – Agape Summer at Bradford Woods
Students of Agape Therapeutic Riding Resources are able to attain physical, mental, and emotional benefits through equine assisted activities and therapies. The Agape Summer Program at Bradford Woods will impact 603 youth: Stirrup Success, Agape Adventures and Special Olympics of Hamilton County.
Boys and Girls Club of Harrison-Crawford Counties – After Hours Rock Climbing
The Boys and Girls Club of Harrison-Crawford Counties enables young people to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens. 120 youth will have the chance to experience the impact of the Boys and Girls Club through the After Hours Rock Climbing program.
Camptown, Inc. – Experience Nature
Experience Nature will provide an outdoor experience to 750 students. Partner organizations will have the opportunity to choose a day hike, a day canoe trip, a camp day, a teambuilding day, or a week of backpacking as enrichment to their summer program. Each Camptown program provides an opportunity for youth to experience the benefits of nature. Youth unplug from electronics and plug into nature. Students learn about themselves and their world by actively engaging in nature with their peers. In a Camptown program, youth will hike, canoe, camp, backpack and explore while learning essential life skills.
Children’s Better Health Institute – Forever-Fit Summer Camp
Forever-Fit Summer Camp engages, educates and encourages youth and their families to adopt a healthier lifestyle. FFSC focuses on long-term behavioral change, not a quick fix for rapid weight loss. FFSC strives to equip campers with the tools they need to thrive in today’s world as active, healthy adults. Camp will impact 35 kids and their families each summer.
Concord Neighborhood Center – The Ride of a Lifetime
Concord Neighborhood Center has been a cornerstone of the south side community for more than 130 years. In partnership with Marian University’s Indy Cycloplex, 72 youth in Concord’s summer day camp program will have the opportunity to participate in a week-long cycling camp, called the Ride of a Lifetime.
Damar Services, Inc. – Damar Services Recreation Program
The Damar Recreation Program serves 260 youth and provides recreation, sports and fitness offerings on its campus. Damar’s Recreation Program enables children and youth to develop the social skills, confidence and appropriate behaviors necessary for independent living in the community. Expansion of the disc golf course equipment and expand the track and field program with a long jump pit, shot-put area and javelin to participate in and host Track and Field Special Olympics.
Early Learning Indiana – Summer Health & Water Safety Program
Early Learning Indiana Summer Health and Water Safety Program promotes healthy physical activities and nutrition for 525 children enrolled at its seven centers. Programs include: six weeks of water safety/swim instruction for youth 4-6 years old at the IU Natatorium and a focus on healthy nutrition complete with fresh local produce and lessons about healthy nutrition.
Happy Hollow Children’s Camp – Archery Program
Campers get the chance during the camp week to participate in a group archery session, where they will learn proper shooting techniques, arrow retrieval, and other archery skills. Throughout the summer of 2015, the camp is expecting to serve 600 economically disadvantaged and special needs children from the Indianapolis metro area.
Hawthorne Social Services Association, Inc. – Hawthorne Summer Camp
Hawthorne Summer Camp provides programs and services that meet economic, social, education, recreational and civic needs of persons living in the Hawthorne service area. The summer camp will impact 215 youth this summer.
Horizons at St. Richard’s Episcopal School – Summer Program
Horizons at St. Richard’s Episcopal School exists to address three overarching goals: to eliminate summer learning loss, increase water safety and prevent obesity for 120 youth this summer. The summer program focuses on getting kids active in activities like soccer, basketball, lacrosse, football, watersports and other playground activities.
Indianapolis Parks Foundation – Swim Indy
Swim Indy teaches youth from low-income neighborhoods how to swim for lifelong health and safety. The target audiences for this program are 200 youth who attend Indy Parks’ six-week summer programming at the neighborhood park locations. During Swim Indy classes, the youth participants will learn how to swim, increase their knowledge of water safety, and be able to complete different levels of swimming (beginner, intermediate or advanced). The program will run for six weeks and every park will be scheduled for one two-hour session each week. Youth will engage in either water safety, fundamentals of swimming, or advanced swimming technique during class.
Jackson Center for Conductive Education – Summer Camp Field Trips
Children who attend the Jackson Center have severe motor disabilities, limiting their opportunities to participate in summer camp programs. 20 youth will experience summer camp field trips with the Susan Williams CHAMPS Grant. Summer camp outdoor activities include water play, adaptive bike riding, adapted obstacle courses, modified volleyball, badminton or baseball.
Jameson Camp – Summer Camp
Jameson Camp enriches the lives of Indiana youth by inspiring them to discover their strengths. Jameson Camp will impact over 500 youth through day camps and programs that include opportunities like the Challenge Course, with a team-building area, a climbing wall, a zipline, and a high ropes course that is 40 feet off of the ground.
Joseph Maley Foundation – JM Fitness
The Joseph Maley Foundation JM Fitness program utilizes sports activities including baseball, track, and watersports to nurture a strong sense of self-esteem and positive self-image in children with disabilities. The program will impact 188 youth.
National Junior Tennis & Learning of Indianapolis – Summer Youth Tennis Program
NJTL offers youth tennis and education programs for children 5 and up, and for teenagers up to 18 years old. NJTL helps develop the character of young people through tennis, life skills, educational enrichment and healthy living choices. Their summer youth tennis program will impact 1,000 youth.
Richard E. Jeffers Boys & Girls Club
The Boys & Girls Clubs of Wayne County have teamed up with the Reid Hospital and the United Way to create ClubFit, a new program for the youth of Wayne County. ClubFit promotes healthier lifestyle activities and programming. 200 youth will have a chance to earn multiple prizes and awards as ClubFit members are awarded points for every program session they attend and fitness challenge they complete.
The People’s Burn Foundation – Camp Saturday
The People’s Burn Foundation supports burn survivors and their families through camp and other therapeutic activities. Camp Saturday is a week-long specialized camp for burn survivors from the ages of 5 to 18. The camp takes place in June and will impact 35 youth.
Tab Recreation – Friday Night Lights High School Football
Tab Recreation is an urban youth sports league that offers a 7-on-7 flag football program for high school football players. These events are played in May and June and are hosted on Tab’s field. The Tab Recreation Friday Night Lights events will impact 160 high school athletes.
About Indiana Sports Corp.
Indiana Sports Corp’s mission is to create positive impact by hosting world-class sporting events that enhance vibrancy in the community, build civic pride, drive economic impact and media exposure, and encourage opportunities for youth. A not-for-profit organization, Indiana Sports Corp was founded in 1979 as the nation’s first sports commission. Our recent and upcoming schedule of events includes NCAA Men’s and Women’s Final Fours, Super Bowl XLVI in 2012, Big Ten Football Championship Games through 2021, Big Ten Basketball Tournaments, 2015 P&G Gymnastics Championships, 2016 U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Diving, and much more. For more information, visit www.IndianaSportsCorp.org. Follow us on Twitter at @IndSportsCorp.
By Kas Vargo
The Market at Hague
Binford Redevelopment and Growth, Inc. (BRAG), is pleased to announce a name change for the Binford Farmers Market to “The Market at Hague.”
The market is in its ninth year and makes its permanent home at Lawrence North High School, 7800 N. Hague Rd, in Indianapolis, Indiana, and is held from 8 a.m. to 12 noon, Saturdays, May through October.
The Market at Hague provides a connection to over 80 vendors with deep roots in Indiana, including farms, nurseries, bakeries, wineries, meat vendors, cheese makers, specialty food products and artisan crafts.
The Market at Hague is an initiative of Binford Redevelopment and Growth, Inc (BRAG.) By bringing together Indiana food and craft artisans, musicians, and area businesses and non-profits at the Market at Hague, BRAG creates a vibrant community gathering offering local, fresh food, support for local businesses, and cultural and ethnic educational opportunities.
The first Saturday of each month Recycle Force will be on hand to accept electronic waste and all household recycling materials, including plastic, aluminum, paper and cardboard, and bikes and bicycle accessories.
The second Saturday of each month fine artists and craftsmen come to the market with their handmade wares for personal and household use.
The Market at Hague is pleased to continue accepting SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) Cards at the market. SNAP recipients may bring their Hoosier Works cards (EBT) cards to the farmers market home tent and obtain tokens which may be used to purchase fresh, local vegetables, fruits, dairy products, meat products, honey, preserves, baked goods, plants used to produce food at home and much more.
Market shoppers can receive updates from the market by subscribing online (http://marketathague.com/) to the weekly email newsletter featuring seasonal availability, vendor updates, promotions, recipes, upcoming music and other events in the BRAG area.
For up-to-date information on vendors and other market events, shoppers can visit the Market at Hague Web site or call Kahfii King, Market Manager, at 773-505-0851. Follow us on Facebook or Twitter!
By Aubrey Sitzman
On behalf of the Spring Blossom Festival
On May 1-2, 2015, the Brown County Democrat will sponsor the inaugural Spring Blossom Festival in Nashville, Indiana.
This year’s festival will give a nod to the movie trilogy “Back to the Future,” where a Delorean time machine visited the years 1985-1955, 1985-2015, and finally 1985-1885. The Festival will salute all of the years featured in the movies through several events and activities that will be fun for the whole family.
Highlighting the Spring Blossom Festival will be Saturday’s Brown County Lions Club Spring Blossom Parade. An annual event that involves the entire community, the parade will feature a Delorean or two, along with cars from the 1950s, 1980s and from 2015.
To salute 1885, a group of cowboy reenactors also will be in the parade and will perform a “cowboy shoot” in period costumes.
Kicking off the Brown County Democrat’s Spring Blossom Festival on Friday, May 1 will be a showing of the original “Back to the Future” movie at the Brown County Playhouse in downtown Nashville at 7 p.m. Admission is $5 plus a canned food donation, which will be given to local food banks. Costumes are encouraged, with contests and prizes offered. A replica of the courthouse clock from the movie also will be available for photo opportunities.
In addition to the parade, on Saturday, May 2, car shows will be staged around the community, featuring classics and antiques from the 1950s, 1980s and beyond.
The Brown County Rotary Club will sponsor annual kids’ games on Main Street (between Van Buren and Jefferson streets) immediately following the parade and the Brown County Salvation Army will host a kids’ street fair after the parade as well. Participation in the kids’ games and street fair is free.
Saturday evening will feature an open dance at the Season’s Lodge Conference Center beginning at 6 p.m. The theme of the dance will be “Enchantment Under the Sea,” similar to the high school dance that takes place in “Back to the Future.”
Dancers will be able to enjoy music from the 1950s, 1980s and beyond and are encouraged to come in costume. 1950s, 1980s, or cowboy outfits, as well as “Back to the Future” movie characters, are welcome!
Prizes will be presented to various contest winners at the dance and 106.1 The River is scheduled to do a live remote broadcast. Admission to the dance is $5 plus a canned food donation, which will be given to local food banks.
With so many exciting activities and family-friendly events, the inaugural Spring Blossom Festival is guaranteed to be a good time for all.
For more information, contact Larry Hanson with the Brown County Democrat at 317-418-7771 or email email@example.com. To register in the Brown County Lions Club Spring Blossom Parade, go to http://eclubhouse.org/sites/browncounty.
By Kelly Young
On behalf of Stutz Artists
The Stutz Artists Association has added artist demonstrations, kid-friendly activities and an entertainment line-up that features jazz, blues and more to its Open House.
The 22nd Annual Raymond James Open House takes place Friday, April 24, 2015, 5:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., and Saturday, April 25, 2 p.m. to 7 p.m., at the Stutz Business Center, 212 W. 10th St., Indianapolis, Indiana.
Tickets are $12 in advance at select Old National Bank locations and the Stutz Business Office or $15 online and at the gate. Tickets are valid both days. Children 12 and under are free. For information call 317.503.6420 or visit http://www.stutzartists.com/.
Proceeds from the event support the Stutz Residency Program, a scholarship that provides free studio space and utilities for emerging local artists for one year. It is one of the largest grants to individual artists in the state.
The Raymond James Stutz Artists Open House is the largest indoor art event, downtown Indy. More than 70 artists will open their studios and present their work to visitors during the 2015 two-day event.
The Stutz Open House, which began in 1993, attracts more than 6,000 people every year to the 400,000 square-foot former car factory.
The Raymond James Stutz Artists Open House not only allows guests an opportunity to see the work of 70+ local artists in one place at one time, it’s an opportunity to see where and how the work is created.
Artwork ranges from paintings, drawings and photography, to sculpture, jewelry and furniture. In addition to being a great place to buy one-of-a-kind gifts with artwork prices from $12 to $10,000- the event offers a rare chance to see vintage cars in the historic Stutz car factory.
Visitors will also enjoy special activities such as painting with Wine and Canvas, demonstrations, acoustic music and food vendors.
2:30 pm Artist Rachel Steely James, Studio B350
How does an oil painter bring forth depth and glow by altering the colors in a painting? Rachel Steely will demonstrate the layering of translucent paint that helps bring to life her abstract butterfly paintings.
3 pm Artist Kerry Jackson, Studio A210
Kerry Jackson, fine arts and performance artist, will be creating a live painting to music in under 15 minutes. Come witness the creative process in a fast-paced and unique way!
3:30 pm Artist Wendy Franklin, Studio A330
Wendy Franklin will focus on showing the audience the basics of wet felting, a process that involves layering of wool and silk, wetting it down, and applying pressure until the fibers mesh together and form a whole.
4 pm Artist Myra Perrin, Studio A315
Making metal move: Myra Perrin will demonstrate how to turn flat pieces of copper sheet and wire into 3 dimensional forms, as well as demonstrate texture and color on metal.
4:30 pm Artist Cheryl Lorance, Studio B255a
Visit Cheryl Anne Lorance in Studio B255a to see an egg tempera painting demo. Egg tempera painting was the primary painting medium in the European Medieval and Early Renaissance period up to 1500. It was replaced by oil painting and lost for centuries until five British artists founded the Society of Tempera Painters in 1901, launching the tempera revivalist movement.
5 pm Artist Ritch Hanna, Studio C380
Ritch Hanna will demonstrate his tools and techniques while working with hot and cold wax, adding color, scraping, scribing, and using a heat gun and butane torch to get the effects he wants.
5:30 pm Artist “Quilting by the Stitch”, Studio D365
Several members of the Clayton family make up “Quilting by the Stitch.” Come and watch as they show how they take fabric and turn a simple, traditional quilt block into a beautiful, modern piece of artwork.
6 pm Artist Kerry Jackson, Studio A210
Kerry Jackson, fine arts and performance artist, will be creating a live painting to music in under 15 minutes. Come witness the creative process in a fast-paced and unique way!
Friday, 5:30-10 pm
Andra Faye and the Rays
Cara Jean Marcy and Grover Parido
The Dapper Music
Marvelous Marvin, Chicago George, with special guest Jay Thompson
Saturday, 2:30-6 pm
Andra Faye and the Rays
DNA and Delta Duo
Heart 2 Heart
Davis Harlow Project
Salvador Dalai Llama Farm