The Lighthouse Lodge B&B on Lake Shafer
By Bob Burchfield, Editor
Life can be a routine of the mundane and ordinary if you let it, going along from day-to-day with nothing special to look forward to. Or as it has been said, “A rut is just a grave with the ends knocked out.” But then every once in a while, if you get lucky, you can break out of that rut and have a memorable and unforgettable experience that lasts a lifetime in your heart and soul.
So it was last weekend in White County, Indiana, on the occasion of my younger daughter’s wedding. But that’s not what I want to discuss herein (that’s the topic for another blog). I want to talk about the venue: The Lighthouse Bed & Breakfast on Lake Shafer. With no disrespect to anyone or any other place, this is the nicest place I’ve ever visited anywhere in Indiana.
Before I go any further, let me make it clear that there is no conflict of interest here: I didn’t receive a room discount or any favoritism of any kind. I paid my bill like any other guest. My thoughts here are simply the way I feel after enjoying three days of some of the best Hoosier hospitality I’ve ever experienced.
When it comes to hidden Hoosier treasures, The Lighthouse B&B on Lake Shafer has to be right up there at the top of the list. Owners Mike and Bonnie Triplett have taken a dilapidated and distressed property that was near the point of demolition and over the course of 20 years turned it into a little piece of Heaven on the east shore of Lake Shafer. Who knew there was such a gem just 100 miles north of Indianapolis?
The Lighthouse B&B on Lake Shafer is the Triplett’s home, but it’s also a glorious setting — right on the waterfront — for a quiet and relaxing weekend getaway. In my opinion, it’s ideal for a family reunion, weddings, business meetings, retreats, or just about any kind of gathering up to 125 guests or so.
The main building has seven tastefully decorated contemporary suites. Across the yard are four cottages that can accommodate a couple or as many as nine, including handicapped-accessible facilities. The Honeymoon Suite with a balcony overlooking the property is breathtaking. There’s a boat dock with a pontoon, a large deck for outdoor parties and other special occasions, a fire pit, a sandy beach with playground equipment and toys for the kids, a pier, a big yard with a waterfall, and that distinctive lighthouse on the point (see photo below) that gives the property its name and defines its character.
And then there’s the Rec Room (see photo below): gathering place, breakfast nook, living room, kitchen, movie theater, darts, poker, bumper pool, and restaurant all rolled into one. I can’t compare it to any other place I’ve visited. I sat at the counter and watched Bonnie make breakfast for 35 visitors on both Saturday and Sunday. Cracked five dozen eggs each morning by hand — fresh eggs just delivered by an area farmer. Blueberry syrup for the banana pancakes — from scratch. Homemade biscuits from scratch. Nothing out of a can; everything made fresh.
I noted Bonnie’s attention to the needs of guests who required gluten-free menu items. And I admired her easy-going, almost casual pace. Not hurried or harried, not frenetic or frustrated, but quietly and confidently in control. Great stories and conversation. Great atmosphere and friendliness. For his part, Mike is quietly efficient and attentive to the needs of his guests. Together they make a great team!
It’s one of those rarest of places where you are welcome behind the counter to pour your own coffee or get a cup of milk out of the fridge. It has a comfortable homey feeling to it. The Tripletts are there to welcome you into their home, attend to your needs, and create an unforgettable experience.
I could go on, but the pictures speak for themselves. It’s not inexpensive, but hey, this isn’t a chain hotel with frozen waffles and OJ for breakfast. This is an experience. It’s worth a visit, and it’s open year-round.
The Lighthouse B&B on Lake Shafer is located at 4866 North Boxman Place, Monticello, Indiana, a few miles north of Indiana Beach on the east side of the lake, the non-commercial side of the lake. Quiet. Serene. Peaceful. Splendid.
For more information, visit http://www.thelighthouselodge.com/, or call 574-583-9142.