If you want quaintness, all you need to do is visit Shipshewana, Indiana, located about a half-hour southeast of Three Rivers on Indiana Highway 5. We spent a weekend there recently visiting with other Lion friends. It was sort of a reunion. We had all gathered there five years ago, when the Lions of Michigan held their State Convention at the Shipshewana Convention Center. We opted to all stay at the Super 8, right next door.
We all arrived on a Friday afternoon. After visiting for an hour or so, we decided to travel west to Middlebury and have dinner at Das Essenhaus. Now we’ve been to Essenhaus many times, but we had never had their Family Style dinner. It was an excellent choice. The food was, of course, delicious and the service was the usual outstanding.
After dinner, we returned to the motel for card games and more visiting. The motel staff was kind enough to allow us to use the breakfast dining area. We all love card and board games, but it usually takes me a while to catch on to the rules and action of playing.
The weather on Saturday couldn’t have been better: sunny skies and low humidity. The ten of us visited all the tourist attractions and we brought back plenty of cheese and other snack items. I treated everyone to a ride on the 1906 carousel, located on the third floor of the Davis Mercantile building. We were all kids again, for three or four minutes anyway.
The Blue Gate was our choice for Saturday evening dinner. Several members of our group had never dined at either the Blue Gate or Das Essenhaus. The general feeling was that traveling to Middlebury was the better choice.
It was another game-night on Saturday, although we had more snacks to choose from, as a result of our Saturday shopping spree.
One of the most enjoyable things we did during our brief visit was to sit at a picnic table and watch the horses and buggies pass by. It seemed so relaxing and peaceful. Almost as relaxing as sitting around a campfire and enjoying the smell of burning wood.
On Sunday morning, we all met again for coffee in the breakfast area. We talked about future gatherings and said our good-byes.
Sundays are much different from the other six days of the week in Shipshewana. All stores and restaurants are closed and it’s rather quiet. Just about the only thing you see and hear are the horses and buggies on their way to Sunday Meeting.
The Amish are quite approachable and friendly. They lead a rather simple life style and are extremely family-oriented. If they are farmers, their farms are immaculate and well-tended.
Quite a few Amish reside in Northern Indiana. It’s only about thirteen miles from the Three Rivers area, so during those times of stress, take time to get Out and About to either Middlebury or Shipshewana. It’s less costly and more fun than a visit to a therapist. Both communities love to see Michigan license plates.
The Three Rivers Farmers’ Market, located in Scidmore Park, is available every Thursday for your perusal. If you haven’t been there yet, be sure to take the time and see what is available. You may enter through the drive on West Michigan Avenue, just west of the Rocky River Bridge, and directly across the street from LA’s Coffee Cafe.
Butterflies taste with their feet.
See you Out and About!
Submitted by Norm Stutesman