Carroll White REMC — July 2021 Indiana Connection

Page 1

New ORU board members strong advocates of ‘giving back.’

Carroll White REMC’s

One chick and a hammer pages 18–23


JULY 2021

from the editor

A preponderance of paper Those who’ve lived in their homes for many years probably have boxes filled with forgotten treasures tucked away in seldomvisited nooks and crannies under the stairs, in the basement or in the attic. I know I have. So, for the past few months, I’ve devoted several hours each weekend to unearthing what’s inside my collection of rediscovered boxes. Several boxes, including one that I most recently came across, are filled with old magazines and newspapers. They must have been significant to me once, right? And, I’ve got to admit — it is fun now to flip through them to reacquaint myself with the “good ol’ days.” But I’m starting to wonder: why did I keep these random periodicals and, perhaps more importantly, why do I not remember keeping them? Maybe, I’ve decided, I didn’t have time to read all this stuff 15 years ago so I just stuffed them in a box for a “rainy day” that never came. In that decade and a half, my always present “to be read” pile continued to grow, augmented by an exploding email inbox and a soft spot for the latest novels from my go-to favorite authors. I think I’m finally starting to realize that there will never be enough rainy days to read everything that I want to! So, I’m doing what I should have done years ago. I’m turning back the Time magazines from 2006, tossing turn-of-the-millennium Travel and Leisure magazines and bidding adieu to Peoples from the past. It’s easy to get bogged down with “stuff” — stuff you need to do, stuff you hope to do, stuff that you’ll tackle one of these days when you have time. Well, no more! It’s time to lighten the load so to speak and finally take the trash out! I’m sure I’ll soon run across a few boxes that will actually be worth unpacking. And once I ditch my preponderance of paper, I may have a place to set some actual keepsakes out and enjoy them!


On the menu: November issue: Pumpkin, deadline Aug. 1.

December issue: Chocolate, deadline Oct. 1. If we publish your recipe on our food pages, we’ll send you a $10 gift card.

Giveaways: We have five prize opportunities this month. Weenee World, which is

showcased on page 14, is providing four $25 restaurant gift cards. Plus, we have an autographed copy of Mina Starsiak Hawk’s new children’s book, “Built Together.” For details and to enter, visit Entry deadline for giveaways: July 30.

Three ways to contact us: To send us recipes, photos, event listings, letters

and entries for gift drawings, please use the forms on our website; email; or send to Indiana Connection, 8888 Keystone Crossing, Suite 1600, Indianapolis, IN 46240-4606.

VOLUME 71 • NUMBER 1 ISSN 0745-4651 • USPS 262-340 Published monthly by Indiana Electric Cooperatives Indiana Connection is for and about members of Indiana’s locally-owned, not-for-profit electric cooperatives. It helps consumers use electricity safely and efficiently; understand energy issues; connect with their co-op; and celebrate life in Indiana. Over 304,000 residents and businesses receive the magazine as part of their electric co-op membership. CONTACT US: 8888 Keystone Crossing, Suite 1600 Indianapolis, IN 46240-4606 317-487-2220 INDIANA ELECTRIC COOPERATIVES OFFICERS: Walter Hunter President Randy Kleaving Vice President Steve McMichael Secretary/Treasurer John Gasstrom CEO EDITORIAL STAFF: Emily Schilling Editor Richard George Biever Senior Editor Holly Huffman Communication Support Specialist Ellie Schuler Senior Creative Services Specialist Taylor Maranion Creative Services Specialist Lauren Carman Communication Coordinator Stacey Holton Director of Creative Services Mandy Barth Vice President of Communication ADVERTISING: American MainStreet Publications Cheryl Solomon, local ad representative; 512-441-5200; Crosshair Media 502-216-8537; Paid advertisements are not endorsements by any electric cooperative or this publication. UNSOLICITED MATERIAL: Indiana Connection does not use unsolicited freelance manuscripts or photographs and assumes no responsibility for the safe‑keeping or return of unsolicited material. SUBSCRIPTIONS: $12 for individuals not subscribing through participating REMCs/RECs. CHANGE OF ADDRESS: If you receive Indiana Connection through your electric co-op membership, report address changes to your local co-op. POSTAGE: Periodicals postage paid at Indianapolis, Ind., and at additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send change of address to: Indiana Connection, 8888 Keystone Crossing, Suite 1600, Indianapolis, IN 46240-4606. Include key number. No portion of Indiana Connection may be reproduced without permission of the editor.

JULY 2021







Indiana eats



05 CO-OP NEWS Energy news and information from your electric cooperative.


10 ENERGY Improve your home’s energy use with Wi-Fi-enabled tech.


13 COUNTY OF THE MONTH Spotlighting Miami County.

Weenee World serves up hot dogs, ice cream and fun.


Indiana Connection




15 FOOD Spilling the beans. 18 COVER STORY One chick and a hammer: Meet businesswoman, HGTV star and author Mina Starsiak Hawk. 24 SAFETY Electrical receptacle safety is as fundamental as the ABCs.


26 BACKYARD Battling the mighty mite. (Not in all editions) 27 RECALLS (Not in all editions) 28 PROFILE Bill Wolfe’s sculptures keep heroes and legends alive. 30 H OOSIER ENERGY/ WABASH VALLEY NEWS

On the cover Mina Starsiak Hawk, the daughter in the motherdaughter dynamic duo of Two Chicks and a Hammer and the HGTV show “Good Bones,” talks to Indiana Connection about the success of the show, her restoration work in old Indianapolis neighborhoods and other new projects. PHOTO COURTESY OF TWO CHICKS AND A HAMMER


JULY 2021

co-op news “This institution is an equal opportunity provider and employer.” CARROLL WHITE REMC P.O. Box 599; Monticello, IN 47960 800-844-7161 (Toll Free) MONTICELLO OFFICE 7:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., Monday – Friday DELPHI OFFICE 7:30 a.m. – 1 p.m., 2 p.m. – 4:30 p.m., Monday – Friday EMAIL CEO Randy W. Price BOARD OF DIRECTORS Kevin M. Bender, 219-863-6652 4280 W, 700 N, Delphi

Margaret E. Foutch, 219-279-2677 7535 W, 500 S, Chalmers

Gary E. Gerlach, 574-595-7820 9833 S. Base Road, Star City

Kent P. Zimpfer, 765-479-3006 4672 E. Arrow Point Court, Battle Ground

Tina L. Davis, 219-204-2195 7249 W, 600 S, Winamac

Ralph H. Zarse, 219-863-6342 1535 S, 100 E, Reynolds

Aaron Anderson, 765-427-5592 6634 W, 300 S, Delphi

MISSION STATEMENT “Creatively enhancing our community through safety and service.”

Safety, Service, and Community IMPORTANT DATES

Operation Round Up’s newest board members strong advocates of ‘giving back’ The two newest Operation Round Up trustees — who began their tenures this year — both joined the Operation Round Up board at the encouragement of Carroll White REMC board members. Carroll White REMC Director Ralph Zarse asked Reynolds resident Paula Westfall to be part of the board of trustees. “I thought it would be a great opportunity to help nonprofit organizations that would benefit from the grants,” Westfall, a 16-year member of the REMC, said. Meanwhile, Kathy Zink was encouraged to join the board by family friend Kevin Bender, CW REMC board president. “I was aware of Operation Round Up for some time,” Zink, who grew up on REMC lines, said. “I love the idea of a local company giving back to the community.” A 26-year member of the REMC, Zink and her husband have supported FFA and 4-H for many years. The rural Carroll County resident, who lives between Burrows and Delphi, north of the Hoosier Heartland, has been a Delphi Library board member for 12 years and especially likes projects that support children.

Though Westfall and Zink have only been on the Operation Round Up board a short period of time, they’re already strong advocates for all that can be accomplished when REMC members “round up” their electric bills. “For the members who participate in Operation Round Up, I am thankful the CW REMC has this source of funding to benefit community organizations,” Westfall said. “For members who do not currently participate in rounding up their monthly bills, I would encourage them to get more information about the program!” Zink echoes Westfall’s comments about giving back to the community through the program. “Every little bit helps,” she said. She advises non-profit organizations who might want to apply for a grant to “be thorough with the application and give it a shot!”


Cycle 1 June bills are due July 5 and are subject to disconnect July 27 if unpaid. Cycle 2 June bills are due July 20 and are subject to disconnect Aug. 10 if unpaid. Meters are read using the Automated Meter

MINIMIZE INDOOR HEAT During summer months, run large appliances that emit heat (like clothes dryers and dishwashers) during the evening when it’s cooler. This will minimize indoor heat during the day when outdoor temperatures are highest. — U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY

LIKE US ON FACEBOOK carrollwhite.remc

Round Up Trustee Paula Westfall, center seated, with her family.


JULY 2021



“Thank you to all the CW REMC members who currently participate in Operation Round Up! I’m learning just how much this actually helps the community in so many different ways. I’ve been so impressed with everyone involved in Operation Round Up and their genuine desire to help the community.”

KATHY ZINK, Operation Round Up Trustee Kathy Zink, second from right, with her family.


JULY 2021

Operation Round Up trustee

co-op news

NEW PROGRAMS ENHANCE MEMBERS’ LIVES VIRTUAL LOBBY Recently, CW REMC members received postcards announcing the grand opening of the CW REMC Virtual Lobby which allows members to safely visit and engage with CW REMC from anywhere. The high-tech, easy-to-navigate Virtual Lobby includes fun and informative tools to educate members on a wide array of topics. With just a few clicks, members can explore the advantages of being part of a member-owned cooperative. Almost every element of this virtual experience has a pop-up with detailed information, interactive tools, and engaging videos.

The Virtual Lobby features: • An interactive home energy use tool • A guide to electric vehicles • Information on how power is generated • Advice on how you can save on heating and cooling costs • Answers to your geothermal system questions • A student guide about how electricity works • An Operation Round Up primer — and how you can sign up • Information about CW REMC’s college scholarship opportunities • SmartHub information including how to sign up • And so much more!

Access CW REMC’s Virtual Lobby on any of your electronic devices at “This information technology experience is a creative and new way to connect with our members,” said Casey Crabb, CW REMC communications and public relations manager. “The Virtual Lobby is another tool to keep members informed, educated and inspired. This is your cooperative, and we want to provide you with information you want and need. Perhaps there is information in the Virtual Lobby that you didn’t realize you needed!”

UPGRADING TEXT ALERTS Many of us receive text alerts to access timely information about schools, road conditions, weather or, in the case of CW REMC, power outages and restorations. Though CW REMC’s Watts Up Texting Program has been a helpful tool for the 1,300 members who signed up for these alerts, we’re taking the alerts up a notch. Currently, CW REMC Chief Operating Officer Cathy Radersdorf said, “Members receive information on the entire system. For example, if you live in Delphi and are part of the text alert system, you receive all system information including what is happening in Buffalo.” But with a new and improved program tied to members’ individual accounts, “If your home or business location’s power is out, you will receive notification about just your service, not all CW REMC members’ service,” Crabb said. “You will also be informed when restoration has occurred.” And not only that: you’ll learn about outages and restoration efforts much faster. “We have been working on this new platform for a number of years,” Raderstorf said. CW REMC started signing members for the new text alerts at its June 23 Annual Meeting. The program will go “live” by the end of this month. Members need to be signed up for Smarthub to be part of this service.

continued on page 8 JULY 2021


co-op news continued from page 7

LOOPED IN GEOTHERMAL PROGRAM CW REMC is investing in a new program to help members enjoy the benefits of a geothermal heating and cooling system. Geothermal energy is a sustainable and still largely untapped renewable energy source. “Geothermal systems are highly efficient and beneficial on several levels to our members,” Joe Spear, CW REMC energy advisor, said. “However, with the up front cost of installing a geothermal system, some members can’t afford this type of system.

“If you are an eco-minded homeowner, switching to geothermal is one of the best choices you can make!” The new Looped In program is designed to help. “Carroll White REMC will pay to have a member’s loop system installed,” Spear said. “What this means is that CW REMC will own and maintain the loop portion of the system. Members will pay a monthly amount for the loop on their bill. This takes part of the cost of a geothermal system out of the member’s financial obligation toward the project.”

What you should know about geothermal heat pump systems • According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, geothermal heat pumps can reduce energy consumption and corresponding emissions up to 44% compared with air-source heat pumps and up to 72% compared with electric resistance heating with standard air-conditioning equipment. • Geothermal heat pump systems also improve humidity control by maintaining about 50% relative indoor humidity. • Greater energy efficiency equals lower electric bills. • CW REMC promotes both ground source and air source geothermal heat pumps. Through this promotion, members will receive rebates once geothermal systems are installed. Currently, 12-15 geothermal (ground source) heat pump systems are installed on CW REMC lines each year. With the Looped In program, we hope that number increases. • Geothermal heat pumps use the constant temperature of the earth instead of the outside air temperature as the exchange medium. Although many parts of the country, like Indiana, experience seasonal temperature extremes — from scorching heat in the summer to sub-zero cold in the winter — a few feet below the earth’s surface the ground remains at a relatively constant temperature.

“Geothermal heating and cooling systems are simply one of the most environmentally friendly ways to heat and cool your home. They do not produce any carbon monoxide or any other greenhouse gasses that contribute both to your increased carbon footprint and air pollution!

Did you know that CW REMC has a full-time energy advisor on staff to consult with members on cost savings and environmentally safe ways to heat and cool your home or business? Schedule an energy audit with Joe Spear by calling 800-844-7161. continued on page 26


JULY 2021




Wi-Fi-enabled devices can improve your home’s energy use For many, “new

equipment also can help

appliances and devices

that have garnered its

technology” can be

people improve their

that continue to draw

certification as energy

defined as “replace your

home’s energy use.

power when plugged

efficient models.

current devices, usually at a substantial cost.”


in. Some Wi-Fi-enabled outlets even work with home energy monitors

New Wi-Fi-enabled devices help you control

But here’s some good

New Wi-Fi-enabled

news: some new

outlets and power strips

appliances and systems

allow you to better

will instead help you

control power going to

keep more money in

appliances and devices.

your wallet.

These outlets can be

Over the last few

controlled by mobile


saving devices and ideas,

decades, technology has

devices and can include



changed virtually every

features such as timers

appliances — including

or contact your local

aspect of life: people

and sensors that can

refrigerators, clothes

electric cooperative’s

can watch movies at

turn devices on when

washers and dryers, and

energy advisor for details.

the press of a button

activated. Wi-Fi-enabled

dishwashers — can help

and they can speak in

power strips provide

reduce energy use and

real time to people on

these options for even

minimize waste. If your

the other side of the

more devices. They limit

appliances are close to

globe. Computers have

the energy wasted when

10 years old, you may

impacted virtually every

devices remain on when

want to start planning

element of society.

not in use and even

to replace them. You

Fortunately, the greater

decrease “vampire loads.”

can visit the ENERGY

controls offered by Wi-

Vampire loads are caused

STAR® website for the

Fi-enabled devices and

by high energy use from

list of appliance models

to help homeowners better understand how appliances and devices use energy in their homes.

energy use in your home and many also come with efficiency settings for even greater energy savings. For more information on energy-

by Kevin Carpenter Energy Advisor Tipmont REMC


JULY 2021



Due to the ever-changing COVID-19 situation, please note that the events below may not occur at their originally scheduled times. Be sure to reach out to the event contacts below to ensure that the programs you are interested in are still taking place. JULY 15-17: FAMOUS ST. JOE PICKLE FESTIVAL, Saint Joe (Dekalb), Riverdale School. Free. 260-337-5461. JULY 22-24: BERNE SWISS DAYS, Berne (Adams), downtown. Food, crafts, competitions, family-friendly rides, quilt show, horse pull, musical concerts, tours, polka music, parade and games. Free. 260-589-8080. AUG. 5-8: JASPER STRASSENFEST, Jasper (Dubois), downtown and citywide. German-themed street festival with music and entertainment on three stages. Food, dancing, rides, games, beer and wine garden, and run/walk. Hot air balloon launch, tractor and car show, arts and crafts booths, church tours and more. Free. 812-482-6866. MORE EVENT LISTINGS AT INDIANACONNECTION.ORG/EVENTS

JULY 2021



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ipshewan Sh e s t. 1 9 2 2

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SHIPSHEWANA FLEA MARKET OPEN NOW THROUGH SEPTEMBER 29 Midwest’s Largest Flea Market Every Tuesday & Wednesday 8 am – 4 pm; Rain or Shine Weekly Antique Auction Every Wednesday, Year-Round

Danielle Sommerman recalled Christmastimes with her grandparents in Florida when she created her Best of Show-winning entry.

Winning works selected for 2022 student art calendar Twenty-five Indiana student artists were selected as first place and honorable mention winners in the annual art contest sponsored by Indiana’s electric cooperatives. Their artwork will illustrate the cover and inside pages of the 2022 Cooperative Calendar of Student Art. The calendar will be printed this fall and will be distributed throughout the state by participating electric cooperatives (REMCs) and their statewide magazine, Indiana Connection. An “Artist of the Year” was selected for the work judges picked as “Best of Show.” That honor went to recent Crawford County High School graduate Danielle Danielle Sommerman of Sommerman English for her realistic illustration of Christmas ornaments on a bed of seashells to depict December. This was Sommerman’s second Best of Show. She has won her grade division six consecutive years. Students are asked to create art to illustrate the month that corresponds numerically with their grade at the time they enter the contest (ie: first graders-January, second graders-February … 12th gradersDecember). Kindergartners create the cover art which has no assigned theme. Indiana electric cooperatives began the contest in 1998 to recognize and encourage student artists. In the 24 years since, over 94,320 pieces of art have been created and entered in the calendar art contest. To view the winning works, please visit and follow the links.


JULY 2021

Grade Division winners were: • Kindergarten — Arabella White, Medora • First Grade — Reid Blake, Greensburg • Second Grade — Flynn Cissell, Borden • Third Grade — Olivia DeSchamp, Jasper • Fourth Grade — Jessa Berg, Ferdinand • Fifth Grade — Rachael Shoemaker, Argos • Sixth Grade — Jackson Robbins, Rochester • Seventh Grade — Harley Koons, Seymour • Eighth Grade — Riley Aebersold, New Albany • Ninth Grade — Justine Ocken, South Whitley • 10th Grade — Andrew Zink, Winona Lake • 11th Grade — Hannah Brown, South Whitley • 12th Grade — Danielle Sommerman, English • Best of Show — Danielle Sommerman, English.

Honorable Mention winners were: • Kindergarten — Ella Lubbers, Ferdinand • First Grade — Cora Atkins, Ferdinand • Second Grade — Hannie McNeely, Fairland • Third Grade — Kaylin Fuller, Charlestown • Fourth Grade — Julie Bloomfield, Winona Lake • Fifth Grade — SaRai Fontanez, Seymour • Sixth Grade — Adilynn Meyers, Decatur • Seventh Grade — Lucy Hess, Crawfordsville • Eighth Grade — Cameryn Proxmire, Kendallville • Ninth Grade — Justine Ocken, South Whitley • 10th Grade — Sophia Watson, Charlestown • 11th Grade — Kaitlin Anderson, South Whitley • 12th Grade — Abigail Brinegar, Paoli.


Peru will hold its annual Circus City Festival the week of July 17-24.

Miami County Our state may be called “Indiana” but only two of the state’s 92 counties, Delaware and Miami, honor groups of Native Americans by name. Miami County was founded in 1833 in north central Indiana, an area that was home to the Miami tribe. But at the very time the state was being forever dubbed “the land of the Indians,” the Native Americans were being forced from their native land by European-American settlers and the U.S. government. In 1846, most of the Miami were forced to leave, too. At Peru, Miami County’s seat, 327 tribe members boarded riverboats on the Wabash for relocation to Kansas. But by treaty, five family groups of the Miami who had amassed some wealth and land were allowed to stay in Indiana. These included the family of Frances Slocum, the white settler kidnapped by Delaware Indians in eastern Pennsylvania when she was 5. She later married a Miami chief and lived as a Miami Indian named Maconaquah. The family of Francis Godfroy was another. He was a Miami leader who owned a trading post and was one of the most influential and wealthiest Hoosiers at the time.

By 1897, the federal government claimed the Miami who had remained in Indiana were no longer living as a “tribal community” and stripped them of their federal tribal recognition. For the past 124 years, Indiana’s Miami tribe has worked tirelessly but unsuccessfully through the courts and Congress to overturn that federal dictate. Today, the Miami Nation of Indians of Indiana operates as a non-profit organization from the former Peru High School complex. The tribe, with an enrollment of 6,000 individuals, actively provides community services at the complex; maintains tribal cemeteries in the area; and continues preserving and sharing its distinct culture, language, and heritage. Two blocks from the Miami tribal center is another Miami County landmark — the Peru Circus Center, permanent home of Peru’s Amateur Circus, the Circus City Festival and Parade, a circus museum and gift shop. Peru became the “Circus Capital of the World” after 1884 when local livery stable owner Benjamin E. Wallace launched his own. The Hagenbeck-Wallace Circus grew to


County Facts FOUNDED: 1834 NAMED FOR: Miami tribe of Native Americans. POPULATION: 35,567 (2018 estimate) COUNTY SEAT: Peru INDIANA COUNTY NUMBER: 52 become America’s second-largest circus behind only Ringling Bros. Wallace’s winter headquarters outside Peru also served as the winter home for Ringling Bros., and others. Even after Wallace sold his show in 1913, the Peru quarters continued to shelter animals and equipment of circuses until 1938. Efforts to revive Peru’s circus heritage led to its first circus festival in 1959 and amateur youth circus in 1960. Meanwhile, the old winter grounds became a National Historic Landmark and is now the International Circus Hall of Fame museum. The Peru Amateur Circus, with local performers ranging in age from 7 to 21 years, continues to this day during the festival week.

JULY 2021


Indiana eats


FRANKLY This is the perfect time to indulge your children — as well as your inner child — in the iconic food and fun of the season. We’re talking hot dogs, onion rings, banana splits and lemon shakeups. And not only that — throw in some old-fashioned kiddie rides, playground equipment, cotton candy and hula hoops that will entertain the little ones for hours. These are the keys to the success of a sandwich and ice cream shop that you’ll only find in New Castle, Indiana. Weenee World is reminiscent of drive-in restaurants of yore with picnic table dining and a full menu of comfort food served primarily either in buns, cones or straight from the deep fryer. This isn’t a place to be fancy. It’s all about fun! Naturally if you come to Weenee World, you’ll want to try a weenee — which come in various sizes prepared various ways including fried, steamed or dipped in corn batter (corn dogs!) and with your choice of traditional toppings or mouthwatering coney

sauce. Since Sloppy Joe sandwiches are a restaurant menu rarity, if you have a craving for this messy-butworth-it tasty treat, don’t miss Weenee World’s version. Its tenderloins, famous for being amazingly ginormous, landed Weenee World on the Indiana Foodways Alliance’s “Tenderloin Lovers Trail.” The popular landmark also grabbed a spot on the “Just Cruisin’ Trail” and “I Scream for Ice Cream Trail.” Weenee World’s ice cream flavors include unusual selections like Henry County Pothole (chocolate with black tan fudge and chunks of chocolate “asphalt”), Sea Turtle (sea-salt caramel and salty caramel swirl with chocolate caramel turtles) and Unicorn Stars (purple vanilla ice cream whirled with blue frosting, sparkly glitter star candies and “magical” sprinkles). Hungry for a perennial favorite sweet treat? Try Weenee World’s generously sized Banana Split, a delicious way to beat the heat. When visiting Weenee World, keep in mind inside dining is not available. So, get your food via the drive-through or at the walk-up window and grab a picnic table if you’d like. It’s summertime: enjoy the day and savor the food!



JULY 2021

Weenee World not only serves up “fair-style” food like hot dogs and ice cream. Its playground area offers tons of fun for the little ones.


765-529-5530 Closed Mondays and Tuesdays






Sharon H. Miller, Greensburg, 1 (15 oz.) can lima beans 1 (15 oz.) can red kidney beans 1 (15 oz.) can white navy beans 1 clove garlic 3 T. bacon fat ½ cup catsup 3 T. brown sugar 3 T. vinegar 1 t. salt 1 t. dry mustard ¼ t. black pepper Drain beans and combine with other ingredients. Pour into a baking dish and bake covered at 325350 F for 1 hour. Uncover, stir and continue baking (uncovered) for 15-20 minutes more. Serves 9.

Spilling the beans

‘Turn the bean around’ with these reader recipes

JULY 2021




2 (15 oz.) cans garbanzo beans (chickpeas) 6 T. olive oil 3 T. lemon juice 1 T. chopped garlic ½ t. salt ½ t. pepper ½ t. cumin ¼ t. cayenne pepper 1 t. paprika


Linda Bertke, St. Meinrad Crust: ¾ cup all purpose flour ½ cup quick cooking oats ½ t. salt ¼ cup canola oil 3-4 T. cold water 1 t. cornmeal Filling: ¾ cup canned pinto beans, drained and mashed (or buzz them in the food processor) ⅓ cup melted butter 1 t. vanilla extract

Drain beans, rinse in cold water.

1¼ cups sugar

Combine all ingredients in

2 eggs, lightly beaten 1 cup pecans or ½ cup chopped pecans and ½ cup chopped sweetened flaked coconut

food processor. Process until desired consistency. Keeps for several days in the refrigerator. Serve with pita chips, toasted pita bread or crispy vegetables. Makes 2 cups.

Optional: whipped topping or ice cream for serving To make crust, buzz the flour, oats and salt in a food processor. Slowly drizzle in oil. Gradually add water until a ball forms. Roll out dough between two sheets of waxed paper;

invert dough into a 9-inch pie plate. Remove remaining waxed paper. Trim and flute edges. Sprinkle the bottom of the crust with cornmeal just before filling. To make filling, preheat oven to 350 F. Mix together beans, butter, vanilla, sugar and eggs just until blended well. Stir in pecans or the pecan/ coconut mixture. Pour into crust. Bake for 30 minutes. Check the pie and use an aluminum foil collar around the pie if the crust or filling is browning too fast. Bake 15-20 minutes longer until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean but still moist. Cool on a wire rack. Serve warm with whipped topping or ice cream if desired. Refrigerate leftovers. Serves 8. Cook’s note: An old southern recipe and one of many Depression-era pie recipes that used inexpensive ingredients to make a delicious budget dessert. Tastes like a pecan pie with less sugar, fewer eggs and a little bit of fiber from the pinto beans.



JULY 2021


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After successfully rehabbing her own home, Mina Starsiak Hawk, above left, discovered a passion for giving new life to old homes. Joined by her mom, Karen E Laine, right, they founded Two Chicks and a Hammer, an Indianapolis-based home renovation company in 2007. Two Chicks works mostly in struggling inner-city neighborhoods in their Indianapolis hometown. Two Chicks was discovered by an HGTV scout seven years ago and Mina and Karen's show "Good Bones" took off. Fans of the show, which just began its sixth season, love the "reveal" portion of each show to see how Mina and Karen add just the right touches to make each remodeled room "pop."



JULY 2021

Meet Mina

This chick’s varied projects involve more than a hammer

Mina Starsiak Hawk, the

years ago and its offshoots:


latter half of the dynamic

a new company store

renovating homes with your mom for

mother-daughter duo of the

(Two Chicks District Co.), a

seven years before the production

HGTV show “Good Bones,”

branded line of affordable

company’s talent scout stumbled across

was enjoying a cup of

home goods, and a nascent

your Facebook page and reached out to

coffee on a beautiful blue-

501(c)3 nonprofit foundation.

you. Was it your company’s moniker, your

sky morning in May near

She is especially pleased

personalities, or what that encouraged

downtown Indianapolis. All

to talk about the nonprofit

them to find out more about you?

around were the fruits of her

because its goal is to help

labors. Down the street from

fixed-income neighbors

the coffee shop, she could

affected by rising property

see four houses she and her

taxes that come with the

mom, Karen E Laine, had

revitalization of old worn-

previously renovated in the

down neighborhoods that

revitalized near-southside

Two Chicks works in.

neighborhood so near and dear to where the 36-year-old lives with her husband, Steve, and their two children.

MINA HAWK: Probably the name was catchier than some others. Just “Mina’s Renovations” or something probably wouldn’t have been as interesting. And then when they looked, I’m sure I had some videos on there. So, it was pretty obvious that it was me and my mom.

She also has her hands full

We’re both redheads. So, I think those

raising Jack, who’ll be 3 in

few things piqued their interest.

August and is in the diapershedding stage, and newborn

IC: Did you think that you and your mom’s

Starting work on a possible

daughter, Charlotte. But

relationship and what you were doing to

seventh season on HGTV,

she paused long enough to

revitalize Indianapolis would make an

the DIY-star is no D-I-V-A.

talk to Indiana Connection

interesting show?

Comfortable in holey jeans,

editors Emily Schilling and

T-shirt and work boots, she’s

Richard Biever by phone

wholly a Hoosier — hard

about the popularity of the

working, plain speaking,

show; new projects, including

community minding.

becoming an author of a

Her busy schedule includes overseeing the home renovation company — Two Chicks and a Hammer — she and her mother started 14

children’s book; and her love of Indianapolis. Here is part

MH: Not so much the construction aspect. But throughout my life, high school on, my family, our interactions, crazy things have happened. I’ve been told by plenty of people, “Oh my God, you guys need a TV show. This is ridiculous!”

of the conversation. (To read

So, I really think it’s more the personal

more, visit this story online at

aspect than the renovations. There are


JULY 2021


CONTINUED FROM PAGE 19 so many people that renovate homes, but that are sticks in the mud or boring. What really makes the show work is, yes, you get like a good


renovation, and there are fun demo scenes. But, for whatever reason, people like us on a personal level, or they either love or hate us. Some people think my mom’s laugh is like daggers in their eyes, but they keep watching because they’re interested. IC: Who came up with the name “Good Bones?” MH: It’s definitely a construction term, but we didn’t name the show. It was given to us. And it is not applicable at all to the homes we buy because they did not have “good bones.” When we first got the name, we were halfway through filming the season. And I thought my producer was playing a joke on me because I’m fairly easy to rile up. I was like, “No, no, I’m not falling for that.” She was like, “No, it’s ‘Good Bones.’” And I was like, “I’m not even gonna get mad. That’s dumb. That makes no sense.” And she said, “You say that now. But in a year from now, you won’t be able to imagine it being called anything different, and she was right. I don’t know why it works that way. But what we kind of lean into is the “good bones of the neighborhood.” You can renovate anywhere. But if you’re renovating in a neighborhood that doesn’t have neighbors that care, it’s just going to get run down again immediately. So, our neighbors and our neighborhoods have “good bones,” not necessarily our houses. IC: When you graduated from Indiana University, did you ever dream you’d be doing what you were doing? MH: I had no idea what I would be doing. I just didn’t want a desk job. But I didn’t know what that was going to look like so I was still just waiting tables, while I gave myself time to figure it out.

Though Season 6 premiered last month, filming for “Good Bones” typically takes place year-round. Just as you see on the show, Mina takes an active role in all aspects of a home makeover — from “hammer time” to adding finishing touches with decor items.


JULY 2021

After I renovated my house, I was like, “Oh, this is fun. This is going to be different every day, and I don’t suck at it. I did all right on my first tile install,” and things like that. I don’t know how

much I believe in fate or a universal

really big, but it feels like a small town.

peripheral attention span doesn’t

plan or anything like that. So probably

People are friendly in the Midwest. I

really exist. But we’ll be walking and

a combination of having certain

wanted to stay and raise my family.

my husband will be like, “That girl is

intentions in life, and then things just falling into place in the right way worked out well. IC: Do you renovate homes throughout the year or just during the season?

A lot of times, it feels like making TV, you’re just kind of like a dancing monkey. There’s not a whole lot of meaning to it. The things that do make it feel a little more important, in the big picture, are being able to help someone else’s success. We do get to

freaking out …” like a 12-year-old that doesn’t want to come ask for pictures. But everyone, I think again partially because it’s just the Midwest mentality, has been super friendly and not weird or overbearing or overstaying their welcome.

MH: The season is all year. We

spotlight local artists and cool people

I’ll be at dinner and someone will

haven’t had downtime between

doing cool things.

come up and just say, “I really love the show. Thank you so much for what

seasons since Season 2 and 3. And since then, they’ve always given us

IC: And that’s something that the

you’re doing for the city.” And it’s a

the go-ahead to start the next season

producers were on board with?

nice exchange. There’s not ever been

before we’re done with the previous one. So right now, we still have three reveals left for Season 6, and we started filming for a possible Season 7. It takes 10 months to film the season, if not a little bit more, so we’ll get a break again eventually … when the show is canceled. IC: Why are you so passionate about Indianapolis and the state of Indiana and spotlighting the local and state

MH: From the beginning, they wanted Indianapolis to be a character in the show — which is awesome. One of the things that’s particularly nice about our show is you feel you could do what we do: You’re buying a $30,000

anything where I felt like it was too much. IC: You and your mom have such great chemistry on the show. Have you always been that way?

house; you’re putting $100,000 into it,

MH: We’ve always had a very up-and-

compared to LA. I could afford a toilet

down mother-daughter relationship

… maybe. So, it seems very realistic

which a lot of people can probably

and attainable in an identifiable place.

relate to. At various points in my adolescence and adulthood we didn’t

IC: How do you and your family cope

talk much, and then there have

with being “those celebrities” in the

been times where we were probably

MH: I never wanted to live anywhere

big city that’s like a small town? Are

dysfunctionally close. So, it’s still

else. I went to IU in Bloomington for

you recognized and have you had any

just kind of that. We have a lot of fun

school and got to travel a bit out of the

awkward encounters?

together, and we also annoy each

businesses you do?

country. So, it’s not that I haven’t been anywhere. I just really like Indy. I like the size of it. I like that we’re actually

MH: None awkward. I’m always kind of just like head in the sand working or going to the next thing, so my

other a lot. That’s just, I think, part of the charm of the show. CONTINUED ON PAGE 22

TWO CHICKS DISTRICT CO. 1531 S. East St. Indianapolis, IN 46225 Mina’s newest venture on the south side of downtown Indianapolis offers home decor items, furnishings and other small items, and also serves food and beverages. JULY 2021



IC: And how are the kids?

IC: So, when you’re talking to each

MH: Oh, they’re so good. I was

other on the show, kind of kidding each other … that’s not scripted.

doing a little recording with Visit Indy yesterday for some convention folk.

That’s just you?

We were over at the store, and Jack

MH: Yeah. They do try to script us

waiting for me to wrap up. Jack is in

sometimes because we do what’s called “pickups.” They’ve edited most of the episode, and maybe in one of our interviews, we — shocker — are long-winded about explaining something. And so they give us this list of lines to re-say so it’s short enough to fit into the slot they need. If it’s given to Mom ahead of time, she marks the whole thing up and edits it. IC: With your mom’s retirement, not from the show but from Two Chicks, has she slowed down at all when it comes to renovating homes? MH: She’s doing the fun, retired woman stuff. She’s not doing a lot of the floor plan work and the design build out stuff with me. She’s just enjoying semi-retired life.

and Charlotte and Steve were there, the potty training phase. At one point, he dropped his shorts and pulled his diaper off and is running around in the background. Thank God his shirt was

It’s called “Built Together.” And it’s the two things I know: Construction and non-traditional family structures. The subliminal message is that you can build your family just like you build a house: Any way you want — as long as you have the right foundation and the right tools. IC: Is that something you’d like to explore in a book for adults, too?

long enough that you don’t actually

MH: There are so many self-help

see anything. That’s pretty much his

therapeutic books. I hate the word

MO right now. Charlie’s a little over 8

“memoir” — I’m 36 — I don’t want to

months, and just got her first tooth …

write a “memoir.” But I think my adult

she’s really cranky. But they’re both

book, eventually, would be just sharing

just really sweet kids.

the whole story. Anyone that’s on TV or in the spotlight, you get this very

IC: You recently wrote a children’s

small snippet of their life. The show

book. Is writing something you thought

is a very accurate representation of a

you would do and would like to pursue

very small chunk of my life. There’s all

maybe in the future, too?

this other stuff that if you knew would

MH: I really enjoy it. I actually have a Google Doc called “Ramblings.” And

make you feel better about your own life, but they don’t show any of that.

that’s what it is. But I don’t get enough

That’s why on social media I try to be

time. The kids’ book was a more

super open. That’s why I was public

manageable version, because it’s

about my plastic surgery. [Mina had

short; it’s for kids.

a “mommy makeover” in December.] When I see pictures of people in

Though Karen has retired from Two Chicks and a Hammer, she’ll continue to appear in “Good Bones.” The signature light-hearted banter between the mother and daughter adds to the show’s appeal.

swimsuits, I’m like, “Oh, my God, they had three kids. Why do they look like that?” And now that I had a tummy tuck, I know: “Oh, because they had a tummy tuck.” So, when I post my family vacation pictures next month, I don’t want some other moms thinking, “I’m just not working out hard enough like she obviously does.” IC: Tell us more about your 501(c)3? MH: It’s called “Two Chicks Give Back.” The gist of it is to help bring something positive to the potential negative effects gentrification can have. The negative part of


JULY 2021

gentrification is that you’re pricing people out of the neighborhoods who have been here forever. For the most part, that’s people on a fixed income, like Social Security. I can talk until I’m blue in the face about how the positives [of home restoration


and neighborhood revitalization] outweigh the negatives. But that doesn’t mean that the negatives don’t exist. For us, the negatives aren’t necessarily something we can fix by just stopping renovating homes because we’re not living in a bubble. There are other people doing that, too.

Mina recently wrote a children’s book that focuses on two things she knows: construction and non-traditional family structures. Her daughter, Charlotte, loves looking at the pictures. Mina and husband Steve’s struggle with conceiving Charlotte was among the personal issues Mina has talked about in a public way on her show and in social media.

You think it’s good that you’re raising their property value for them, but that also raises the property taxes. For a lot of people, if they’re simply existing, that is make or break. And while we can’t necessarily fix that, what we’re trying to do is offer assistance to the neighborhoods we work in. So, if it is the older couple with a dog that keeps escaping because they can’t afford to fix their fence, they can apply for funds from the 501(c)3. Or, if they care for their grandkids who live in the home and need help with schoolbooks or winter clothes or really any need in the neighborhoods that we function in — that’s the overall idea.

IC: There must be a great sense of



accomplishment to look around the old neighborhoods near downtown Indy knowing that you, your mom and your company have helped revitalize so many of these old homes that will now live on for another century. MH: I am in one of our neighborhoods right now. I can see four of our houses from the parking lot I’m sitting in. It’s just


nice because I remember what they

For more

looked like before we did them.

information about

Not that we fixed up the house

Two Chicks and a Hammer,

and then the neighbors are going

check out the website

to automatically fix theirs up, but it does seem to have this impact on


the neighborhood in general. JULY 2021




is as fundamental as the ABCs

An electrical receptacle, with its oval

consider these devices and familiarize

— wherever there may be water and/

shape and tiny symmetrical slots

yourself with them, especially when

or dampness present. GFCIs have

over the little round hole, can look

children are in the home.”

“reset” and “test” buttons associated

like an emoji of a face to imaginative children. Look closer, and it’s the emoji of a shocked face. And shock is what outlets can do if a child, left unsupervised, inserts a paper clip, coin, key, or bobby pin into those slots.

Here are three types of electrical receptacles installed today.

TRR Tamper-resistant receptacles have an interior spring-loaded cover that closes off the slots of the receptacle

But receptacles don’t pose

until a plug is inserted. They open

dangers just to children. Accidents

only when two prongs of a plug are

or carelessness with plugged-in

inserted simultaneously to compress

appliances around water or simply

both springs at the same time for the

faulty receptacles and wiring can

electrical circuit to be created. Since

cause electrical shocks and fires that

2008, the National Electrical Code has

can lead to disaster and tragedy.

required new and renovated dwellings

“Electrical safety is always improving,” said John Gasstrom, CEO of Indiana Electric Cooperatives. “There are many consumer safety devices that are now either code and are standard in any newer home, or available and can be installed to make you home electrically safer. It’s important to


JULY 2021

be equipped with TRRs.

with them. It is a circuit breaker that stops the flow of electricity the instant it detects an imbalance in the current going to and returning from equipment along the circuit.

AFCI Arc-fault circuit interrupters are similar to GFCIs but detect a different kind of problem. AFCIs prevent an electrical fire in your home due to “arcing.” An arc fault is an unintended arc created by current flowing through an unplanned path. Arcing creates highintensity heating, resulting in burning particles that can ignite nearby


material like wood or insulation.

Ground-fault circuit interrupters have

If your home doesn’t have these

been around for many years and

three life-saving types of receptacles,

are required in receptacles found

contact a qualified electrician about

in bathrooms, kitchens or laundry

installing them where needed.

rooms and on those found outdoors


Good News for Americans, Bad News for Big Pharma. Millions are expected to benefit from a new technology that’s proven to relieve severe joint discomfort in a matter of days. US- Several pharmaceutical companies could lose millions in revenue as consumers move to a new alternative for joint discomfort. The alternative, an oral supplement, was recently developed by a Seattle-based company. They become one of the first to use a brand new technology that’s backed by over 8-million dollars in research grants. The technology is a major advance in health. Studies have found it can start to provide joint discomfort relief in a matter of days. Even more remarkable, when used for 30 days, it was shown to provide relief without any adverse events. So what’s the secret behind this new pill called VeraFlex? It’s a breakthrough called immune modulation and it’s how you can enjoy more comfort, less stiffness and better mobility at any age. The Science Behind Relief Research shows that the joint stiffness, soreness and even the discomfort is likely caused by certain enzymes released by the body’s immune system The active ingredients in VeraFlex greatly inhibit the product of these enzymes resulting in a potentially dramatic decreasing in swelling and discomfort. This enzyme-inhibiting characteristic is what researchers call immune modulation and is why people experience relief so quickly. “VeraFlex users can generally expect to start to see more flexibility in just a few days…and with

continued use, a tremendous improvement to overall joint function that may help them move more like they did years prior” explains Dr. Liza Leal, developer and spokesperson for VeraFlex.

This new technology is now encapsulated in this pill. Participants in clinical studies reported improvement to joint function and comfort… in just a matter of days.

Piling on the Clinical Research The secret behind VeraFlex is its active ingredient which is protected by 8 patents and is backed by over 8-million dollars in research. It’s also undergone two clinical trials. In the first, 60 participants were randomly placed into four groups. The data collected by researchers was stunning. The groups taking the VeraFlex ingredient saw staggering improvements such as flexibility, improved comfort, and joint mobility starting in just a matter of days. A second study was conducted to ensure the data was accurate and again the results participants experienced taking the VeraFlex compound blew away researchers. Shockingly, both men and women experienced a reduction in joint stiffness two days faster than when using traditional treatments. “I have to admit I was surprised when I read the initial findings” explains Dr. Leal. “But when you look at the science it just makes sense. It’s going to change everything.” Faster Delivery, Maximum Absorption The VeraFlex formula contains only two active patented

ingredients. The first is Univestin, a powerful immune modulator which inhibits certain enzymes linked to joint deterioration and discomfort and supports healthy inflammation response. The second is Maxcell®, an accelerator and clinically studied blend of aloe vera, pepper, jujube, and licorice root that maximizes the absorption and delivery of the plant based Univestin extract in the body. How to Claim a Free 3-Month Supply Of VeraFlex This is an exclusive offer for our readers. And so, VeraFlex is offering up to 3 FREE bottles and FREE S&H with their order. A special hotline number has been created for all residents. This is the best way to try VeraFlex with their 100% satisfaction guarantee, and any free gifts are yours to keep no matter what. Starting at 5:00 AM today the phone lines will be open for a limited time. All you have to do is call TOLL- FREE 1-800-574-7810, the special promotion will automatically be applied. Important: Due to a surge in sales, supplies are not guaranteed beyond the next 48 hours. Call now to not lose out on this offer.


co-op news continued from page 8

PARTNERSHIP FOR EFFICIENCY CW REMC can also help members save money and energy through the Partnership for Efficiency Program. “Members can do energy efficient updates to their home or business and CW REMC will pay for the material and contractor installation,” explained CW REMC Energy Advisor Joe Spear. “Members will pay CW REMC back on this investment at a low interest rate of 3% with an approved loan term.” This payment will appear as a charge on members’ electric bills. “The savings from being more energy efficient should pay for the loan added to members’ bills,” Spear said.

Loan amounts Minimum loan: $500 Maximum loan: $12,500 Low risk loan limit: $12,500 Medium risk loan limit: $5,000 High risk loan limit: $1,500 *Limit one loan at a time per member

Loan terms $2,501-$12,500, up to five years $500-$2,500, up to three years 3% interest rate


JULY 2021

At the 10th Anniversary Annual Meeting on June 23, CW REMC members learned about these four exciting new member services. Keeping connected is our highest priority and searching for innovative ways to bring value to your options as a CW REMC member keeps evolving and improving. Stay connected with the latest news at our new Virtual Lobby. Visit virtuallobby.

product recalls Peloton recalls treadmill involved in child’s death A 6-year-old child recently died after being pulled under the rear of a Peloton treadmill, leading to a well-publicized recall of the Peloton Tread+ treadmill with model number TR01. Peloton also has received 72 reports of adult users, children, pets and/or objects being pulled under the rear of the treadmill, including 29 reports of injuries to children such as second- and third-degree abrasions, broken bones, and lacerations. The treadmill was launched as the Peloton Tread in 2018 but renamed Tread+ in September 2020. The Tread+ model number TR01 is printed on a black sticker located on the end cap in the front of the treadmill deck. The treadmills have a touchscreen and are black with the Peloton logo on the monitor and the side rails. The treadmill was sold online at and at Peloton showrooms from September 2018 through April 2021 for about $4,295. Contact Peloton at 866-679-9129; or online at and click on Product Recalls at the bottom of the page for more information.

Wrinkle in clothing steamers leads to recall The “My Little Steamer” and “My Little Steamer Go Mini” brand of handheld clothing steamers have been recalled. The steamers can expel, spray, or leak hot water during use, posing a serious burn hazard to consumers. The electrical appliances (120V, 60Hz, 900w) use hot steam, emitted from a nozzle head, to remove wrinkles from garments and other fabrics. The steamers were sold individually or in combination sets in a variety of colors, including black, white, red, purple, and teal, in stores nationwide or online at various retailers, including Amazon, Target, Bed Bath & Beyond, Walmart, and Lowes from January 2002 through December 2020. Call HSN at 855-654-0942; or go online at or www. and click on Recall Information for more information.

Log splitters recalled for engine problem The recall involves YTL, Longli and TIYA log splitters powered by Briggs & Stratton 250cc engine model number 15T232-0011-F8, with serial numbers 160331883074 through 2012073736714, and model number 15T232-1850-F1, with serial numbers 2004260782583 through 2012284118417. This includes several models of 30-, 32-, and 35-ton log splitters, sold under a variety of brands including Black Diamond, Crimson, Lumberjack, Performance Built and Oregon. An incorrect engine ignition coil and flywheel can lead to hard starting and engine kick back, posing an injury hazard to the operator. The company is aware of two incidents, which resulted in broken wrists. The power tool was sold at a variety of stores nationwide and online, including Home Depot, L&M Supply Inc., Lowe’s; Menards; Rural King; Theisen Supply Inc., from March 2016 through February 2021 for about $1,400. Call Briggs & Stratton at 800-999-9444; or go online at and hover over “Support,” then click “Recalls” for more information. As a service to our readers and to promote electrical safety, here is a recent recall notice provided by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. Visit for full details of this recall and for notices of many more.

JULY 2021





Danielle Long asked artist Bill Wolfe to hold her 1-year-old son as she stepped onto a riser in Wolfe’s studio. Then, she peered deep and long into the eyes and face of the sculpture Wolfe had conjured from clay. It was the face of her late husband, fallen Terre Haute police officer Brent Long. “You know?” she said turning to Wolfe, still holding the couple’s little boy. “It’s almost like he’s still alive.” For Wolfe, entrusted to preserve the likeness of the slain officer for a memorial, it was a powerful moment. “You’re like, ‘Wow.’ It’s really emotional. Just no words can describe that feeling, and, of course, my eyes welled up.” For 20 years, Wolfe has been pressing life and soul into clay sculptures. He’s gaining a reputation for the realism he brings to life-sized and largerthan-life monuments and memorials of heroes lost and Hoosier legends that are then cast in bronze. Among the most visible works the West Terre Haute artist has created: • The 15-foot Larry Bird, in his Indiana State University basketball uniform, taking a jump shot in front of ISU’s Hulman Center. • Indiana aviation pioneer and World War I flying ace Weir Cook greeting travelers entering the Indianapolis International Airport terminal named for him. • Muncie’s tribute to Hurley Goodall, a retired firefighter and a long-time leader in the community and the state’s black legislative caucus; poet James Whitcomb Riley hanging out in front of his boyhood


JULY 2021


home in Greenfield; and French-Canadian explorer and military leader François-Marie Bissot, Sieur de Vincennes, surveying the Wabash River along the riverwalk in Vincennes. • American servicemen and women for various community memorials and monuments in Terre Haute, Avon and Carmel. And sadly, he’s now enshrined forever in bronze two Terre Haute police officers from the past decade: Long, who died 10 years ago this month, and Rob Pitts in 2018. “The most emotional ones,” the 66-year-old artist said, “are here in Terre Haute. We’ve had two officers killed in the line of duty. We’re getting ready to put both of those statues together on a memorial plaza in front of the new police station.” Wolfe guesses he’s done around 20 statues, some larger than others.

THE PROCESS He starts with lots of photos of his subjects — if available. “Getting a good likeness is probably the hardest part. But if you have plenty of pictures to work from, that’s a godsend,” he said. Since he hadn’t met Larry Bird before Bird’s statue’s dedication, he used photos of the French Lick phenom in action from all angles. Wolfe usually starts with the head, shaping the clay. Lately, he noted, he’s been cutting the basic forms of the statues from foam. Then he applies a layer of clay over the foam in which he sculpts the details. “Once my clay is completed and the client looks at it and gives approval, then I take it to the foundry.” There, a wax mold is created of the clay sculpture and cut

Vincennes, he had no references to work from. “There are no pictures of Vincennes in 1730 to 1750.” Wolfe created his own portrait of the man in his mind. “I pretty much started on the head again. I work late hours, two o’clock in the morning. I just looked at this egg shape that I carved out of foam, and then I kind of channeled François. I said ‘OK, Mr. Vincennes, tell me what you look like.’ So, I just started sculpting, just applying the clay. Now, some people told me I made him look like me. If I did, it wasn’t intentional.”



Bill Wolfe stands with his interpretation of François-Marie Bissot, Sieur de Vincennes, for the riverwalk in Vincennes. He said Knox County’s historian nixed the mustache and beard for the final version of the French military officer. “Of course, my argument was, ‘Well, he was out on the frontier with a few other soldiers and a bunch of Indians. I don’t think he was real concerned about waking up every morning and looking in a mirror and going, ‘Oh, I gotta shave for the boys,’” Wolfe explained. Nevertheless, he shaved the clay facial hair to suit those who commissioned the work.

into sections. From the wax, a bronze casting is made. The bronze sections are then welded together and the seams are smoothed out. Finally, the bronze is heated and a chemical combination called “liver of sulfur” is applied to give it a dark patina. If the subject is still living, Wolfe might ask to do something he admits sounds “really weird” before starting. He’ll ask if he can run his hands over and around the subject’s head. “I can

gather as much information that way as just looking at them because a lot of sculpting is just feel … touching.” With Goodall’s statue a few years ago, he asked Goodall, who is now 94, if he could touch his head and got the OK. “He let me just kind of feel his brow and his forehead and all around the bulk of his head. And I truly got a lot from that.” With his latest completed and installed work of

One missed opportunity Wolfe said he regrets came in April with the death of Indiana basketball legend Bobby “Slick” Leonard at age 88. Leonard hit the winning free-throw for the 1953 Indiana University NCAA basketball championship team and also coached the Indiana Pacers to three ABA championships. He then became the enthusiastic “Boom Baby” voice of the Pacers. Wolfe wanted to make photos and prepare a statue of him. “Terre Haute should have something made because this was his hometown.” Wolfe got Leonard’s phone number, but then, “I kind of chickened out because I didn’t want him to get that feeling that ‘Bill Wolfe is contacting you before you die.’ When I heard that he passed … I said I should have just went for it.” Wolfe still recalls when the Bird statue was unveiled at ISU; he politely shook the hand of Bird and basketball legends Quinn Buckner and Bill Walton who were on

the stage with him, but his biggest thrill was down the line with Leonard. “When I shook Slick Leonard’s hand, he looked at me and said, ‘Bill, we’re so proud of what you’ve done for Larry. And I just want to thank you.’ “It gave me goosebumps,” Wolfe added. “I almost started crying.” Wolfe said all the memories as a kid looking up to Leonard as the Pacers coach came back. “How much better can that get for an artist: to be able to do that and meet Larry Bird and Slick Leonard?”

KEEPING MEMORIES ALIVE Though he’s now beyond “retirement age,” Wolfe said another great thing about being an artist is there is no retirement age. But he does look back. “In my life I’ve been lucky to have a profession that is something that I love to do. And in that profession, I’m giving respect and honor to people who have done great things with their lives.” While some figures he’s sculpted, like Orville Wright and Larry Bird, would have always lived on, others, like the fallen local police officers might not. “It keeps their memory alive,” Wolfe added of his works. “If you didn’t have [the statues], they would gradually fade away over the years. It keeps their names in the lights.” Bronze casts should last a thousand years, Wolfe noted. Long after all who are alive today have turned to dust and clay, the tributes Wolfe’s hands once pressed into clay will live on and on.

Richard G. Biever is senior editor of Indiana Connection. JULY 2021


Wabash Valley Power news

KEEP I NG Y O U R CO O L when energy demand heats up can lead to serious savings and other benefits

During the severely

kilowatt-hour (kWh).

hottest day (or coldest

local electric cooperative

sweltering summer,

Yet eventually, high

night) of the year.

and its members) or

planning ahead to save

demand days can lead to

energy can keep you

higher average costs for

cool while helping the


environment — and even get you some green back!

Response to Demand Can Save

having to purchase energy on the market.

Many co-ops offer

You can contact your

Your local electric

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local electric co-

cooperative is part of

limit the peak demand

op’s energy advisor

a complex system that

during those days of

for information on

People know the

must be prepared to

extreme temperatures

resources available to

basic rules of supply

meet the highest power

and energy use. Options

help you lower your

and demand — when

demands put on the

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demand goes up, the

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businesses are operating

needed. When you

and water heaters, to

costs. Everyone has a

and everyone is running

pass by on most days,

shift energy use to times

role in reducing long-

their A/C on a hot

most of the spots are

when electricity is in

term energy costs for the

summer afternoon,

empty. Yet on the day

less demand. By doing

local electric cooperative

wholesale electricity

after Thanksgiving,

this, the distribution

— which, in turn, also

prices can soar. You

customarily the year’s

co-op and its generation

minimizes the costs

may not see these

busiest shopping day,

and transmission

you will have to pay in

price differences on

the parking lot may be

cooperative can

the future. Call your

your home’s energy

crammed with cars.

avoid building new

local electric co-op for

bill because your

Your electric co-op

power plants to meet

details, and you can visit

electric co-op may

has to build or buy

increasing demand (this for

average these costs

enough capacity to fulfill

construction would lead

more energy-saving tips

into one amount per

everyone’s needs on that

to higher costs for the

and advice.


JULY 2021