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We cooperative Calendar YouTube Student Art 2020
OCTOBER AUGUST 2019
from the editor
Riddle me this
What can be seen once in a minute, twice in a moment and never in a thousand years? Are you perplexed by the question? That’s what I love about brain teasers. You can ponder them for hours weighing all the possible — and impossible — answers. When you finally have that “aha” moment, or just finally give up and ask for the answer, it all suddenly makes sense. That moment of clarity is worth the sometimes tough mental workout you just underwent. Brain teasers are a good way to keep your mind nimble when you notice it could use a tune-up. I enjoy engaging in these logic exercises because they force me to really listen and focus on just the facts. They prove that when we revise our way of thinking, we can come up with new solutions to everyday challenges. That’s something we all need to work on. Anyway, here are some of my favorite brain teasers. What belongs to you but other people use it more than you? Your name. What can travel around the world but stays in one corner? A stamp. What’s full of holes but still holds water? A sponge. How can you throw a ball as hard as possible only to have it come back to you (without bouncing off anything)? By throwing it straight up in the air. And, in case you’re obsessing over my first question, the answer is the letter “M.”
EMILY SCHILLING Editor email@example.com
Giveaway: Enter to win four tickets to “A Merry Prairie Holiday” at
Conner Prairie, which starts on Nov. 29 and runs through Dec. 31. Details at www.indianaconnection.org/talk-to-us/contests. Deadline to enter: Oct. 31. Lillian Palmer won the Fort Wayne prize package promoted in our September issue. Deborah Day won the four Holiday World tickets also promoted in our September issue.
On the menu: February issue: Sweet and salty snacks, deadline Dec. 2. March
issue: Dips, deadline Dec. 2. If we publish your recipe on our food pages, we’ll send you a $10 gift card.
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 indianaconnection.org; email firstname.lastname@example.org; or send to Indiana Connection, 8888 Keystone Crossing, Suite 1600, Indianapolis, IN 46240-4606.
VOLUME 69 • NUMBER 4 ISSN 0745-4651 • USPS 262-340 Published monthly by:
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 280,000 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 email@example.com IndianaConnection.org INDIANA ELECTRIC COOPERATIVES OFFICERS: Gary Gerlach President Walter Hunter Vice President Randy Kleaving Secretary/Treasurer John Gasstrom CEO EDITORIAL STAFF: Emily Schilling Editor Richard George Biever Senior Editor Holly Huffman Member Relations/ Advertising Manager Ellie Schuler Senior Communication Specialist Taylor Dawson Creative Services Specialist ADVERTISING: American MainStreet Publications Cheryl Solomon, local ad representative; 512-441-5200; amp.coop Crosshair Media 502-216-8537; crosshairmedia.net 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: Readers who receive Indiana Connection through their electric co-op membership should report address changes to their 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.
broadband 03 FROM THE EDITOR 05 CO-OP NEWS What’s happening at your local electric cooperative. 10 ENERGY Does your home make the grade? 12 B ROADBAND SUCCESS STORIES How high-speed internet has helped the Mowery family.
Indiana eats 14 COUNTY OF THE MONTH Spotlighting Parke County. 16 INDIANA EATS Huber’s restaurant still serving down-home meals. 17 FOOD Hog wild: Pork and sausage recipes take center stage. 20 COVER STORY Cooperative Calendar of
26 EVENTS CALENDAR
28 DIY 10 steps to a cleaner car.
32 H OOSIER ENERGY/ WABASH VALLEY NEWS
29 SAFETY Be aware of overhead power lines. 30 PETS Don’t let your pet’s gobble-uns get it. (Not in all versions)
Student Art winners.
FOLLOW US ON SOCIAL MEDIA
33 33 TRAVEL Conner Prairie’s Headless Horseman. (Not in all versions) 34 PROFILE Brandon Hall: Managing technology that drives our industry.
On the cover Danielle Sommerman sits at her drawing table at her English, Indiana, home. The Crawford County High School student was named “Artist of the Year” in last spring’s Cooperative Calendar of Student Art contest. PHOTO BY RICHARD G. BIEVER
BY THE COMMUNITY, FOR THE COMMUNITY www.kremc.com CONTACT US Local: 574-267-6331 Toll-Free: 800-790-REMC EMAIL firstname.lastname@example.org OFFICE HOURS 7:30 a.m. – 4 p.m., Monday-Friday ADDRESS 370 S. 250 E., Warsaw, IN 46582 SERVICE INTERRUPTIONS To report a service interruption after hours, please call 267-6331 or 800-790-REMC. BOARD OF DIRECTORS William Stump Jr., Chairman Dan Tucker, Vice Chairman John Hand, Secretary/Treasurer Kim Buhrt Terry Bouse Tony Fleming Pam Messmore Steve Miner Rick Parker
HEATING TYPICALLY MAKES UP 42% OF AN ENERGY BILL With proper equipment maintenance and upgrades like additional insulation and air sealing, you can save about 30% on your energy bill. — U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY
Use your Co-op Connections Card to save at local businesses Masterson Chiropractic in Warsaw First evaluation for $30 LIKE US ON FACEBOOK www.facebook.com/kosciuskoremc
October brings pumpkins, Halloween and colorful foliage to mind. But October is notable for another reason – it’s National Co-op Month! Cooperatives across the country, including Kosciusko REMC, celebrate who we are and more importantly, the members we serve. Cooperatives are different than other types of businesses. When the market declines to offer a product or service or does so at a very high price, co-ops intervene to fill the need. Similar to how KREMC was built by members who came together to bring electricity to our community, cooperatives are conveners for the common good. KREMC exists to provide safe, reliable, and affordable energy to you, our members. Equally important is our mission to enrich the lives of the members we serve. As a co-op, we are well-suited to meet the needs of the community because we are locally governed. KREMC’s leadership team and employees live right here in Kosciusko County. Our directors live locally on co-op lines, and they have been elected to the position by our members. Our connection to this community offers perspective on local priorities. This helps us a great deal when it comes to making informed decisions on long-term investments such as high-speed broadband, equipment and technology upgrades, and electric vehicle programs. Another feature that sets our co-op apart from a traditional utility is one of our core principles, “Concern for Community.” We partner with local organizations like the Kosciusko Community Foundation for our Operation Round Up program, Warsaw-Wayne Fire Territory for Family Safety Day, Combined Community Services for its Energy Assistance Program, and many other worthy organizations like Riley Children’s Hospital and Honor Flight. I hope you will think of KREMC as more than your energy provider, but instead as a local business that supports this community and powers economic development and prosperity for the people. We will continue to learn from our members about their priorities so that we can better serve you — because KREMC was built by the community, for the community.
BRUCE GOSLEE President and CEO
KREMC rates and rebates RATES
Residential and farm service Service charge ............................$24.50 per month Kilowatt-hour (kWh) charge ......@$.0922 per kWh Tracker charge ..................... @-$.003330 per kWh
Electric water heaters 50 gallons or larger: • Gas to electric replacement — $125 • New construction water heater — $125 • Geothermal desuperheater — $50
Outdoor Lights* 40w LED........................................$8.75 per month 70w LED......................................$12.25 per month
HVAC: • Geothermal system installation — $250 • Air-source heat pump system — $150 • Programmable thermostat — up to $25 Visit www.kremc.com for complete guidelines and restrictions. Additional rebates can be found at powermoves.com.
KREMC linemen Brian H., Larry R., Mike W., R. Runkel and J. Justice help promote breast cancer awareness.
GUYS IN PINK October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. We all know someone who has been affected by this disease. The month of October turns pink as more and more people don the color to show their support of those who have fought or are fighting the battle against breast cancer. Be on the lookout for our guys in pink this month as they promote breast cancer awareness while they work in the field. If you’d like to donate to breast cancer awareness, stop by our office any week day in October to make a donation and add your name to our pink ribbon window display.
welcome to kremc! Have you noticed an unfamiliar face in KREMC territory? We want to introduce Josh Salazar to you. He is the newest member of our team. He comes to us from the Town of Argos Electric Utility where he served as a journeyman lineman. Originally from Plymouth, Salazar has lived in Indiana all his life. He and his wife, Carmin, have two children, Bransen and Leon. Salazar is a true outdoorsman. When he's not on the lines, he enjoys time outside hunting, fishing, and enjoying the great outdoors. Please join us in extending a warm welcome to him. “KREMC is fortunate to have Josh Salazar join our line department team,” said Kurt Carver, manager of engineering and operations.
Go on... Give it a try! We all have busy lives and different schedules. With our payment kiosk, it doesnâ€™t matter what our office hours are. You can pay your KREMC bill any time, day or night. Pay your bill quickly with cash, check or card without getting out of your car! Key tags for the kiosk are available at our front desk.
Our payment kiosk can do a lot of things, including making your life easier. OCTOBER 2019
Does your home make the grade? The HERS rating grades homes’ energy efficiency level Many first-time homebuyers are enthralled with their new purchase for many reasons. Some are excited to learn that their new house may be more energy efficient than their previous residence. The question is: how efficient? Fortunately, the nonprofit Residential Network Energy Services (otherwise known as RESNET) created a nationally recognized standard to determine the energy efficiency level of all homes. The Home Energy Rating System (HERS) Index calculates your home’s energy use and provides a relative performance score. Lower scores mean lower energy use – and a more
energy efficient home! To calculate your home’s HERS Index score, a certified rater performs an assessment on your home and compares the data to a designedreference home of the same size and shape. A HERS assessment includes collecting information about the home’s exterior walls, heating and cooling systems, windows, doors, attics, foundations, and air leaks. This is done during a visit to the home and typically takes two to four hours. RESNET explains that a home with a HERS Index score of 70 means the home is 30 percent more energy efficient than the reference home;
a HERS Index of 130 would mean that the home is 30 percent less energy efficient than the reference home. HERS Index scores are incredibly useful. A HERS rating can help differentiate a home you are selling, documenting how efficient it is. Energy efficient homes are often more attractive (and can likely get a higher price). If you are buying a home, a HERS assessment can provide details about areas of concern to identify what parts of the home should be improved if you do purchase the home. More information about the HERS Index is available at www.hersindex.com.
Your local electric co-op’s energy advisor can help answer your questions about determining your home’s energy efficiency with an energy audit. While not the same as a HERS assessment, an energy audit will provide an in-depth analysis of your home to provide actionable steps you can take to make your home more energy efficient. Contact your local electric cooperative to learn how you can make sure that your home passes the energy efficiency test!
Energy Advisor Noble REMC
What’ s Your broadband story? Tell us why expanding high-speed internet to all of Indiana is important. Electric cooperatives are finding ways to help close the rural digital divide, providing all Hoosiers the same opportunities. Affordable and reliable quality internet means life-altering improvements for rural Hoosiers in:
MODERN HEALTH CARE, including prompt access to specialists, and expanded monitoring and treatment options.
MODERN EDUCATION The Mowery family
When Jennifer and Patrick Mowery married in 2013, they knew they wanted to raise a family together. Jennifer also longed for her small-town community of Crawfordsville, where much of her family still resided. But they faced two major roadblocks – both of their careers were tied to Indianapolis and they had been unable to build on their family that already included a son from a previous marriage. Jennifer and Patrick decided to explore foster care and, in 2017, adopted a baby girl who had been placed in their care. “I always wanted to raise my kids in the same rural community experience that I had where you wave at your neighbors and they wave back,” Jennifer said. “Now that we finally had our family, we really wanted to get back to the country and be close to my family.” Jennifer had steadily built a career working as an accounts payable lead in the healthcare industry. She oversees a team that pays vendor invoices for hospitals. In 2017, her
employer began allowing its staff to work remotely. “It’s a great option, but you have to have fast and reliable internet to make it work,” Jennifer said. Patrick and Jennifer heard about reliable and fast rural internet service being built by electric cooperatives. It was a perfect fit for their dream. They purchased their dream property in northern Montgomery County in May 2019 where Tipmont REMC has started building out its fiber internet service, and Jennifer now works remotely. “I’m able to keep my career and raise our family the way that we wanted to. I’m close to my family so they can be a big part of our lives,” Jennifer said. “It’s mind-boggling to think how many pieces fell into place to make this possible for us.”
options so rural students can use technology previously available only to their urban peers. Adult learners will have access to distance education options.
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT opportunities mean small businesses in rural areas can enter the global marketplace. And, young families seeking a rural lifestyle can enjoy that small town sense of community with the modern conveniences of an urban area. Tell us how having access to affordable and reliable high-speed internet could improve your family’s quality of life, or how new service options have changed the way you live. Your stories will continue to inspire our state’s leaders to do all they can to bring broadband to all of Indiana.
Visit IndianaEC.org/ YourBroadbandStory to share your broadband story!
Parke County BY RICHARD G. BIEVER The west-central Indiana county named after Benjamin Parke, a founding father of Indiana, ends with an “e.” But the county’s cornucopia of well-preserved natural and man-made historical features gives Parke a larger-than-life “park-like” personality.
Countycts Fa FOUNDED: 1821
NAMED FOR: Benjamin Parke, a member of Indiana’s 1816 Constitutional Convention. POPULATION: 16,927 (2019) COUNTY SEAT: Rockville HOME TO: Thirty-one historic covered bridges. A myriad of recreational
Parke County is best known for its 31 quaint covered bridges. But it’s also home to two outstanding state parks, a large reservoir and state recreation site, and popular shaded streams. Together, they provide recreational opportunities for individuals, families and groups to explore, shop for crafts and antiques, picnic, hike, camp, bicycle, bird and wildlife watch, ride horseback, fish, boat, canoe, kayak, and, after all that, just float on an inner tube. Turkey Run State Park was the second state park established in 1916, Indiana’s centennial year. The park takes visitors tripping through time as they hike through deep ravines and sandstone gorges representing some 600 million years of nature’s handiwork and lets them marvel at old growth trees that create a thick canopy overhead. Flowing through the heart of the park, scenic Sugar
Parke County Covered Bridge Festival Oct. 11-20 | Admission: Free 765-569-5226 https://www.coveredbridges.com
The Bridgeton Covered Bridge was rebuilt in 2006 after an arsonist destroyed the original bridge. Creek is a wonderful resource for canoeing and fishing. The park also offers more modern amenities like Turkey Run Inn that’s opened year-round, an Olympic-sized swimming pool, a staffed nature center, and a planetarium. About five miles up Sugar Creek from Turkey Run is Shades State Park. Though most of the park is in neighboring Montgomery County to the east, Shades straddles the corner of three counties: Montgomery, Parke and Fountain County to the north. Shades, too, offers the chance to explore deep sandstone ravines and stands of aged forests. On the county’s eastern side is Raccoon State Recreation Area surrounding Cecil M. Harden Lake. The lake was created by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for flood control in the late 1950s. As a byproduct, it provides a variety of water and outdoor recreation, wildlife habitat and economic benefits to the area. The 31 covered bridges are Parke County’s main claim to fame, and Parke County bills itself as the “Covered Bridge Capital.” Between 1820 and 1920, about 500 covered bridges were built in Indiana, fewer than 100 remain. More than half of those that do are
in and around Parke County. It’s an area with numerous streams and creeks flowing to the Wabash River which shapes Parke County’s western border with Vermillion County. The bridges were covered to protect the wooden trusses and deck from rotting. While they came to symbolize rural America and a simple bucolic lifestyle, they became an impediment to agricultural progress as farming machinery grew larger and could not pass through them. Many places opted to remove the bridges as they deteriorated to improve transportation. Parke County saved many of its covered bridges by diverting the roadway around them on new modern bridges built alongside the covered bridge. Many covered bridges come with the admonition in the arched woodwork entrances overhead: “Cross this bridge at a walk.” Originally it was meant for horse-drawn traffic to pass slowly. Now, the only way, in many cases, to cross them is on foot. And for a county that embraces its natural, rural and small town heritage, it’s good advice folks should heed almost anywhere they go on their walk in the park — in Parke County that is. Richard G. Biever is senior editor of Indiana Connection.
Indiana’s largest festival, held throughout the county, showcases Parke’s 31 historic covered bridges and features authentic arts and crafts, food, two historic mills, and beautiful fall foliage.
Huber’s restaurant still serving down-home meals
P H O TO P R O V I D E D BY JOE HUBER’S FA M I LY FA R M & R E S TA U R A N T
BY RICHARD G. BIEVER
trying to be trendy: just making food the
shop. A mini farm/playground includes
A year ago, a cloud of uncertainty hung
way they were taught on the farm. That
pony rides and the chance for families to
over the future of the fertile u-pick fields
“true to the roots” way of preparing the
feed fish and ducks.
and home-style meals of Joe Huber’s
meals remains at the restaurant. Terra
Family Farm & Restaurant. The iconic
notes everything is freshly prepared and
agritourism destination atop the rolling
made from scratch.
knobs of Starlight was brought to a very
The menu includes Huber Honey Ham,
benefit the WHAS Crusade of Children,
public auction by a division in the family-
Chicken and Dumplings, a variety of
which raises funds to provide services
fresh vegetables, and homemade pies and
for special needs children. This coming
But after the final gavel, Huber fans in
cobblers. In the fall, ever-popular Waldorf
December, a holiday show and dinner will
the greater Louisville region heaved a
fruit salad is added to the menu.
be added to its menu.
collective sigh of relief. A group within
Many of the recipes are based on Bonnie’s
the Huber family was able to purchase
favorites and those of Mary Huber, Joe’s
RICHARD G. BIEVER IS SENIOR EDITOR OF INDIANA CONNECTION.
the heart of the business started in
mom, from back in the 1920s. Bonnie’s
1967 by family patriarch, the late Joe
country fried chicken features a secret
Huber, and matriarch, wife Bonnie.
ingredient that makes it some of the
“We never skipped a beat,” said Huber’s
region’s best — crunchy, golden, and
granddaughter, Terra Huber-Mahan,
juicy. This time of year, especially, it goes
director of sales and marketing. The
perfectly alongside a Huber hallmark:
restaurant remained open through it all.
fried biscuits with apple butter.
“They would be so proud their legacy was saved for all our customers,” Terra said.
The restaurant offers carry-out and also provides catering services up to a 50-60
The restaurant started in 1983. It was
mile radius. In addition, there’s a farm
among the nation’s first “farm-to-table”
market, soda and ice cream shop, and gift
restaurants. But the Hubers weren’t
Autumn events at the farm include a maze and pumpkin patch with wagon rides. As in the past, pumpkin sales
JOE HUBER’S FAMILY FARM & RESTAURANT 2421 Engle Road, Borden (Starlight), IN 47106 812-923-5255 Monday-Saturday: 11 a.m. – 8 p.m. Sunday: 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.
hog wild Pork and sausage recipes take center stage
Pork Carnitas Joni Metzger Pierceton, Indiana
2 lbs. cooked, shredded pork loin 2 t. salt 1 t. cumin Â˝ t. black pepper 1 onion, chopped 3 garlic cloves, minced 2 bay leaves 1Â˝ cup orange juice Juice of 2 limes 1 cup chicken broth Combine all ingredients in a baking dish. Cover dish with foil. Bake at 350 F for 1 hour or until heated through. Serve with warm rice, black beans or tortillas. Add toppings of choice such as cheese, sour cream, lettuce, chopped tomatoes, salsa, guacamole, chopped green onions or cilantro.
FO O D PREPARED BY I NDI ANA CO NNECT I O N S TA FF PHO TO S BY TAYLOR DAWS O N
Wonton Sausage Appetizers Suetta Tingler, Corydon, Indiana 25 count wonton wrappers 2 lbs. pork sausage, cooked and well-drained 1 ½ cups shredded cheddar cheese 1 cup shredded pepper jack cheese ¾ cup ranch dressing Preheat oven to 350 F. Press a wonton wrapper into each cup of a muffin tin. Bake for 5 minutes. Remove from oven and place wonton “cups” on a cookie sheet. Repeat until there are about 25 cups. Mix sausage, cheeses, and dressing until well blended. Spoon mixture into wonton cups. Bake 5-10 minutes or until bubbly. (For bite-sized appetizers, use the smaller 50-count wonton wrappers and bake them in mini muffin tins.)
Wonton Sausage Appetizers Slow Cooker Pork Roast
Slow Cooker Pork Roast Charla Wallman, Topeka, Indiana 1 4-5 lb. pork roast 1 24-oz. can diced tomatoes 1 8-oz. can tomato sauce ½ cup brown sugar 2 T. Worcestershire sauce 1 t. minced garlic Salt and pepper to taste Place pork roast in slow cooker. Mix remaining ingredients in bowl and pour over pork roast. Cover and heat on low for 10-12 hours. Cook’s notes: Serve with Caesar salad and crusty bread.
Danielle Sommerman BEST OF SHOW WINNER
The 2020 Cooperative Calendar
illustrating the month assigned to
of Student Art will be available for
their grade division. First graders in
distribution at participating Indiana
the 2018-19 school year were as-
electric co-op offices around the
signed January; second graders had
state in the coming weeks (... and
February; third graders had March;
into the mailboxes of consumers of
and so on, ending with 12th graders
Newton County REMC with their
illustrating December. Kindergart-
November issue of Indiana Connec-
ners were given the coveted cover
position which allowed them to
Here’s a preview of the 22nd annual
2020 Student Art BY RICHARD G. BIEVER
illustrate whatever they wanted.
edition of the calendar, and your
In addition to the 13 grade division
introduction to 2020’s “Artist of the
winners, nine additional works were
Year,” Crawford County High School
selected at large for honorable men-
student Danielle Sommerman.
tions. These works will appear in a
The calendar will be illustrated with
special section in the calendar.
the winning works from the stu-
A total of $3,375 in prize money was
dent art contest that Indiana electric
shared among the 22 student artists.
cooperatives held last spring. Over 1,800 entries from all grades, K-12, from all over Indiana were entered.
Information about the art contest to illustrate the 2021 calendar, which has a March 20, 2020, entry dead-
As with the previous contests, stu-
line, is now available at IndianaCon-
dents were asked to create artwork
‘Artist of the Year’ Shows Patience and persistence “Artist of the Year” Danielle Som-
goal — winning the “Best of Show”
but old — truck, for the calendar. “I
merman has a front-seat view of the
and earning the Artist of the Year title.
love reflections. The truck was just
vacated floodplain that once was the town of English.
Her winning work, illustrating October in the upcoming 2020 calendar, is a
like heaven for me because of all the different reflections,” she said.
Most of the town was chased to higher
detailed colored pencil illustration of
Danielle’s work first appeared in the
ground about a mile to the east in
a 1927 Ford Model AA truck hauling
student art calendar when she won an
the 1990s after yet another flood.
pumpkins. It’s a departure of her past
honorable mention as a third grader.
Where there once were driveways,
subjects which dealt with gardens and
She illustrated two happy slugs in a
buildings and lawns, there are now
nature. “I was a little bored with the
garden for March. In the 2015 calen-
fairways, bunkers and greens of a golf
nature stuff,” she noted. “I wanted to
dar, her water color of pink dogwood
course. “This is the shell of a town,”
see if I could do something as com-
blossoms illustrating May won the fifth
said Danielle. “I know the golf course
plex as a truck.”
grade division. She then switched her
has covered up most of it, but there’s broken glass bottles, rusty pieces of metal, old things everywhere.”
Earlier in the year, she had drawn a rusty old pickup truck that took first place in the annual art contest
medium of choice to colored pencils and since seventh grade has won her grade division every year.
Growing up in these surroundings,
sponsored by the Overlook Restau-
“I’ve been wanting the Best of Show
Danielle is keenly aware of how time
rant in Leavenworth. The theme had
since first grade,” she said, “and 10
and tide tear at all things. She artic-
to depict the effects of the time. Fresh
years later, I finally achieved it.”
ulates more of an urgency to make
off the success of that illustration, she
a mark in life than most 16-year-olds
chose another truck, a shiny new —
you’ll meet. “I don’t know how much of
CONTINUED ON PAGE 24
it has influenced my art,” she said. “I know it probably has subconsciously. Even though there are so few people here, there’s all that stuff that’s left behind … like a legacy almost.” For years now, Danielle, a junior at Crawford County High School, has been leaving a legacy of her own on walls of electric cooperative consumers all across Indiana. Her artwork has appeared in seven of the last eight editions of the Cooperative Calendar of Student Art, a wall calendar distributed by participating electric co-ops. This past spring, as a sophomore, she achieved her long-time
Always a perfectionist and her own biggest critic, Danielle Sommerman, right, discusses how she could have made her October illustration even better with her mom, Daffney, at the student artist reception and exhibit at the Indiana State Museum in August. Judges selected her work, by the way, the “Best of Show.”
May: Fifth Grade, Ashelyn Evans
Cover: Kindergarten, Charles Quakenbush
July: Seventh Grade, Addysen Standish
January: First Grade, George Quakenbush
February: Second Grade, Abby Porter
March: Third Grade, Rileigh Hash
April: Fourth Grade, Oliver Lanam
September: Ninth Grade, Morgan Dyck
June: Sixth Grade, Naomi Kujak
Danielle Sommermanâ€™s winning October artwork shown on page 20
August: Eighth Grade, Andrew Zink
November: 11th Grade, Evan Olinger
December: 12th Grade, Lexi Harford
Check the November issue to learn how to purchase a 2020 calendar.
CONTINUED FROM PAGE 21
Along with art, Danielle has other passions. She is 54,000 words into a young adult science fiction novel she started writing a couple of years ago. For a career, she wants to pursue her love of chemistry. “Seeing the sheer amount of plastic and pollution in our world and in our oceans fills me with so much rage,” she said. “I might as well make that rage a part of my career — and chemistry is my favorite class. I absolutely love the reactions ... there is just undying curiosity there. So maybe I could develop something to help
Danielle Sommerman’s honorable mention artwork from the 2013 calendar.
to mind Danielle’s first success in the art contest with the little garden mollusks. Quirkily, snails and slugs are a universal symbol of stability and persistence. That’s the kind of stick-toitiveness Danielle and so many other student artists have shown pursuing and then achieving the Artist
icant and transient slug or snail leaves a little part of
subjects, but Danielle
itself behind as it passes
approaches art almost as if
through this green earth —
she’s joining different mol-
an iridescent legacy on a
ecules to create something
dull concrete slab.
finished, there is an object you can look at. A photo didn’t do that. Technology didn’t do that. My hands and some supplies did that.” On the front steps leading up to Danielle’s home, the silvery tell-tale trail left by a tiny snail or slug glistens in the afternoon sun. It brings
David White, third grade
Addie Otte, fourth grade
Mia Fang, eighth grade
Clare Kramer, ninth grade
they also symbolize what
seem like disparate
And when the process is
Phil Carnes, second grade
years. In a whimsical way,
Art and chemistry might
supplies, and my hands.
Lucy O’Bryan, kindergarten
of the Year honor over the
artists do, what all human-
starts, I have a paper, some
Each year after the judges select the 13 grade division winners in the calendar art contest, other top works from the various grades are pulled aside. From these, nine additional works are selected at large to receive honorable mentions. Here are the honorable mention winners from this year’s contest. These works will appear in a special four-page section in the 2020 calendar.
slow steady progression,
our world,” she added.
new. “When the process
NINE ADDITIONAL WORKS HONORED
ity does. Even an insignif-
Danielle still has a lifetime journey ahead, but she’s already thinking about her legacy. “I want people to remember me by the things I did in my life,” she said. “So, my art, my writing, maybe something with the chemistry path I’m choosing — whichever
Adalia Knakiewicz, ninth grade
route I stick to — I want people to remember me.”
Richard G. Biever is senior editor of Indiana Connection. Trinity Hess, 11th grade
Erin Starkweather, 10th grade
18-19 25-26 31 25
HAUNTED ADAMS MILL, Cutler (Carroll), Adams Mill. Ghostly tours of the historic mill. Tractor-drawn hayrides through the haunted forest and campfire treats. 6-10 p.m. Admission charge. 765-564-6757. adams-mill.org
SLIGHTLY SCARY GHOST STORIES WITH DOYNE CARSON, Delphi (Carroll), Delphi Opera House. Come in costume. Free. 7-9 p.m. 765-564-4300. info@ delphioperahouse.org. www.delphioperahouse.org
“A CHRISTMAS STORY” COMES HOME, Hammond (Lake), Indiana Welcome Center. Special events, contests and photos with Santa. Take your picture with “Flick” on our flagpole and browse the official “A Christmas Story” merchandise. Free. 219-989-7979. AChristmasStoryComesHome.com
IRVINGTON HALLOWEEN FESTIVAL, Irvington (Marion), various locations. Oldest and largest festival in the country. Street fair, parade, contests, vendors and arts. Free. irvingtonhalloween.com
DELTA THETA TAU ANTIQUE SHOW, Franklin (Johnson), Johnson County Fairgrounds. Food served continually. Proceeds support local charities. 9 a.m.4 p.m. $3 admission charge. Parking free. 317-694-8052.
SMORGASBORD AND BAZAAR, West Point (Tippecanoe), 4923 Monroe St. Pulled pork, fried chicken, baked ham, chickenn-noodles; assorted vegetables, salads and desserts; rolls and drinks. Carry out available. 4-7 p.m. Adults, $10; children 6-12, $5; children five and under, free. 765-237-2728. email@example.com.
LIVE TALENT SHOWCASE, Mitchell (Lawrence), Mitchell Opera House. Open to community members of all ages residing in Crawford, Greene, Jackson, Martin, Monroe, Lawrence, Orange, and Washington counties. Grand prize is $1,000. Tickets, $10. 7-9 p.m. 812-849-4447. aprince@hoosieruplands. org. www.mitchelloperahouse.com
ANNUAL CHICKEN DINNER, Paoli (Orange), Christ the King Catholic Church. Chicken dinner and games for children. 11 a.m.-2 p.m. $10, adults; $5, children 5-10; children four and under, free. Sixteen-piece bucket of chicken, $25. 812-723-3900. firstname.lastname@example.org. www.occ-indy.org
GASTHOF HOLIDAY BAZAAR, Montgomery (Daviess), Amish Village. Vendors, handmade crafts, jewelry, home décor. Homemade Amish buffet, bakery and gift shops. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Free. 812-486-4900. gasthofamishvillage. com
To ensure our readers have sufficient time to plan ahead to attend these events, we are revamping the timeline of our calendar. Beginning this month, our events listing will run from the 15th of the current month to the 15th of the next month. We hope you find this revised schedule helpful.
MARSHALL COUNTY MUSEUM GHOST WALK, Plymouth (Marshall), Marshall County Museum. Spooky tours and storytelling. 7 p.m. Cost: $10. 574-936-2306. email@example.com. www.mchistoricalsociety.org.
DELTS’ HOLIDAY CRAFTS AND GIFTS SHOW, Portland (Jay), Jay County High School. Over 150 booths. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Food available all day. All proceeds go help others. Admission charge. 260-726-6729. dttcraftshow@ yahoo.com. visitjaycounty.com
11TH ANNUAL TRAIN SHOW AND SWAP MEET, Jeffersonville (Clark), First Presbyterian Church. Model train items for sale along with running displays. Cost: canned item for local food bank. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. 502-415-2194, 812-282-1658 or 502-424-8682. firstname.lastname@example.org. www.southernindianarailroad.com
CHRISTMAS BAZAAR, Charlestown (Clark), Clark County Fairgrounds. Sponsored by the Tunnel Mill Tigers 4-H Club. 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Free. 812-9893988. email@example.com.
This calendar is published as a service to readers and the communities electric cooperatives serve. Indiana Connection publishes events free of charge as space allows, giving preference to free community festival and events in and around areas served by subscribing REMCs/RECs. While Indiana Connection strives for accuracy, please note that events, dates and time may change without notice. Indiana Connection advises using contact phone numbers or internet sites to check times and dates of events before making plans. To add events to Calendar, please use the “Submit and Event” form under the “Talk to Us” or “Calendar” buttons at indianaconnection.org; or mail your info to: Calendar, Indiana Connection, 8888 Keystone Crossing, Suite 1600, Indianapolis, IN 46240. Please submit info two months before the date of the event.
Indiana Connection Marketplace QUESTIONS ABOUT ADVERTISING IN INDIANA CONNECTION? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
SHERLOCK HOLMES WEEKEND: NOV. 1 & 2
DICKENS VICTORIAN VILLAGE: NOV. 1 – JAN. 1
The Game’s Afoot! Holmes & Watson return to Cambridge, OH, for The Case of the Christmas Carbuncle.
Experience old world England through an innovative public art exhibit, architecture & more in downtown Cambridge, OH.
DickensVictorianVillage.com OCTOBER 2019
It’s all in the detailing 10 STEPS TO A CLEANER CAR If we’re not at home or at work, most of us are in our vehicles. And, let’s be honest here: we can be pretty messy when we’re on the road. Keeping your car clean and free of dirt and grime can actually make your life seem a little less chaotic because less mess does equal less stress! An automobile that is regularly cleaned and detailed also retains its resale value — and that is important when you want to sell it or trade it in for a new one. Here are 10 things you should do to get your car looking bright, shiny, fresh and clean: STEP 1 Clear and clean the cup holders. For a quick clean, place a used sock over the bottom of a travel cup, apply window cleaner, and twist. Make sure to use a cloth to get in the corners. STEP 2 Remove crevice dirt. Start by picking up any change, pens, keys or other debris with your hands. Then, try using a barbecue skewer to pick out the trash and items wedged in the hard-to-reach areas. Vacuum the area using the sweeper’s crevice tool (the flat
attachment on the end). Finish off with glass cleaner and a microfiber cloth. STEP 3 Get those corners. Clean out tight interior areas, such as vents, seams, buttons and switches with wood skewers or cotton swabs. Louvers and vents and be cleaned using old make-up brushes. STEP 4 Deep-clean interior fabrics. Spray already cleaned carpets and cloth seats lightly with a foaming aerosol cleaner. When it starts to dry, use a vacuum to remove it. To get a deeper clean, you can rent a carpet cleaner from an area store. STEP 5 Careful with plastics. Use an ammonia-free glass cleaner on your vehicle’s plastic surfaces. Ammonia can cause bleaching to those surfaces. STEP 6 Do a last sweeping. With a vacuum, do a second pass of your vehicle to pick up any dirt freed during the cleaning. STEP 7 Avoid washing in direct sunlight. This prevents any possible damage if the paint gets too hot when you’re washing and
waxing. When washing, start at the top and work your way down using a mitt/rag, gentle soap, and water. Car surfaces are the grungiest as you get lower to the ground, and dirt can end up on your cleaning cloth/mitt, causing scratches. STEP 8 Use a clay bar. After your car has dried, consider using a clay bar (available at retail outlets and auto stores) across the body panels to remove any remaining dirt. The bar can also get windows sparkling clean. STEP 9 Shine those rims. Brake dust, tar, and road grime that’s very hard to remove can cling to your tire rims. To get them glistening, look for a wheel cleaner that’s safe for all surfaces. Avoid harsh cleaners, such as dish soap, that can damage a wheel’s finish. In tight areas, use a sponge and softbristled toothbrush to apply the cleaner. Rinse with water. Go over any spots you missed. STEP 10 Wait to drive. Cleaners, especially those for a car’s exterior, stay wet for a while, which can attract dirt when you drive. Make sure the vehicle is dry prior to driving it. SOURCE: CONSUMERREPORTS.COM
Be Aware of Overhead Power Lines
When should you look up for overhead power lines? LOOK UP for power lines when using tools of any kind,
WHEN IN DOUBT, LOOK UP AND OUT
especially when trees are nearby. Branches can hide power lines from view. Even non-metallic tools can
Whether you’re on the job
overhead line, both you and
both feet together. No part
or working on an outdoor
the equipment can become
of your body should touch
project around your home,
a path for the electricity.
the equipment and the
LOOK UP when
you should always be aware
Look up and out in front of
ground at the same time.
using cranes or
of overhead electrical lines.
you before using a ladder,
Hop or shuffle away from
other lifting devices
Many workplace fatalities are
large machinery, or a pool
the equipment with your
caused by overhead power
cleaning net. Even non-me-
feet together to reduce the
lines. Imagine how easy it is
tallic ladders and equipment
risk of electric shock.
working distance within
for us at home, who are not
can conduct electricity. If you come across some-
trained to avoid these obsta-
20 feet of power lines. LOOK UP for
Using large tools or ma-
one who’s hit an overhead
chinery can make it harder
power line, stay away and
“In a majority of cases,
to avoid overhead power
warn others around to not
fatalities occurred in oc-
lines. Always consider
touch him or her, or you
cupations with little to no
where power lines are
could get shocked, too.
electrical safety training,”
before you begin a project.
Immediately call 911 and
said John Gasstrom, CEO of
Scanning the area should
then contact your electric
Indiana Electric Coopera-
be part of your plan from
cooperative to turn off the
tives. “That’s why we put so
the start. Once you begin
electricity at your location.
much emphasis on safety
making safety part of your
training and compliance
routine, it’ll become sec-
If you know you’re going
up and determine
education, not only for our
ond nature when you run
to be working near power
the overhead clearance from
cooperative employees, but
through your day-to-day
lines, contact your electric
the top of the tree. Trees can
electrical safety checklist.
co-op so the experts there
conduct electric current.
cles, to run into danger!
our consumers as well.”
can properly inform you When working on an out-
If you’ve struck a power
on safety precautions you
door project, stay at least 10
line and must get off the
should be taking in your
feet away from overhead
equipment, jump as far
area. Electrical safety is one
lines. If your ladder or piece
away from the equipment
of our top priorities for our
of equipment touches an
as you can and land with
power lines when putting up scaffolding, framing a building, painting, pruning trees or picking fruit. LOOK UP before moving a tree under a power line. Look
LOOK UP for power lines when working on top of buildings.
Don’t let your pet’s ‘gobble-uns’ get it BY RI CHARD G . B IEV ER Halloween is supposed to be a fun time of make believe. But if Fido and Fluffy make believe the bitesized morsels for trick-or-treaters momentarily left unattended by the front door were for them, Halloween can turn into a true fright night.
Holidays, with their special decorations and treats, are fraught with dangerous tricks for a dog and cat. And these “gobble-uns” could get them — if you don’t watch out.
Treats C HOCOLATE is one of the most infamous unsafe foods for pets. Cocoa seeds, from which chocolate is derived, contain chemicals and caffeine which are poisonous to dogs and cats. X YLITOL, a common sugar substitute found in gum, candy, and baked goods, is also toxic to small animals because it induces a sudden rush of insulin resulting in very low blood sugar. S UGARY, HIGH-FAT CANDY , or even fatty leftovers from the table, can lead to pancreatitis, a very painful, potentially fatal, inflammation of the pancreas. R AISINS, which some people prefer to distribute instead of candy on Halloween, can be extremely poisonous to dogs and cats. Very small amounts of raisins (and grapes) can cause kidney damage. MACADAMIA NUT S can also damage a pet’s kidneys.
In addition, when pets eat candy, they usually don’t remove the wrappers. Ingestion of foil and cellophane wrappers can cause a life-threatening bowel obstruction.
Tricks Halloween now rivals Christmas when it comes to decorations. Like Christmas tinsel and ribbon, fake cobwebs, plastic spiders, and streamers can be tempting play objects for cats. But these can cause a blockage if ingested and can be made of toxic materials. Other decorating/ entertainment concerns: BUBBLE L I G H T S (and snow globes) may contain poisonous chemicals. G LO W S T I C K S and glow jewelry can be punctured by a pet’s sharp teeth. While not usually life-threatening, their contents can cause pain and irritation in the mouth. CO STUM E S, if you like to dress up your pet for Halloween, shouldn’t have rubber bands or anything that might constrict your pet’s circulation, breathing or vision. Check for chewable pieces that could present choking hazards. Metallic beads, snaps or other small pieces, if ingested, can result in serious poisoning.
Also, don’t dye or apply coloring to your pet’s fur. Even if the dye is labeled “non-toxic” to humans, it could still be harmful to pets. T H E C O R D S of decorative lights, if chewed on, can cause burns, seizures, and even death. C A N D L E S can burn the noses and wagging tails of curious pets who sometimes don’t know something is hot until it’s too late. L I Q U I D P O T P O U R R I used to scent your home can cause serious chemical burns to the mouth if licked, especially for cats.
Emergency Information If you suspect your pet has eaten something toxic or poisonous and are unable to reach your regular vet, PURDUE UNIVERSITY’S ANIMAL EMERGENCY SERVICE is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Call: 765-494-1107. ASPCA ANIMAL POISON CONTROL CENTER is also available 24/7 for poison-related emergencies: 888426-4435. A consultation fee may apply.
Apple recalls 15-inch MacBook Pro laptop computers due to fire hazard Apple has recalled almost a half million 15-inch MacBook Pro laptops because the batteries can overheat and pose a fire hazard. The recalled laptop computers have a 15.4-inch (diagonal) display, 2.2-2.5 GHz processors, 256GB-1TB solid-state storage, two Thunderbolt 2 ports, two USB 3 ports, and one HDMI port. Consumers can determine if their laptop computer is included in this recall by checking the laptop’s serial number at https://support.apple.com/15-inchmacbook-pro-battery-recall. The serial number can be found on the underside of the laptop computer or by choosing “About This Mac” from the Apple menu. Only MacBook Pro 15-inch model laptop computers with certain serial numbers are included. Apple has received 26 reports of the laptop’s battery overheating, including five reports of minor burns and one report of smoke inhalation, as well as 17 reports of minor damage to nearby personal property. The laptops were sold at Apple and electronics stores nationwide, and online from September 2015 through February 2017 starting at about $2,000.
APPLE: Call 800-275-2273, or visit www.apple.com, https://support.apple.com/15-inch-macbook-pro-battery-recall.
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Wabash Valley Power news
During National Cooperative Month, remember that it pays to save! October is National Cooperative Month, and you can celebrate by checking out some of the unique opportunities that your local electric co-op offers through its Power Moves® program. As you may know, we at Wabash Valley Power are a generation and transmission cooperative created by and composed of our member co-ops. We partner with all 23 of our members to offer expertise, incentives, and rebates. This reflects your local electric co-op’s commitment to the Cooperative Principles in multiple ways:
MEMBERS ARE (POSITIVELY) FINANCIALLY IMPACTED BY POWER MOVES INCENTIVES. One of the seven principles, Members’ Economic Participation, is reflected in the Power Moves programs. Homeowners may have the opportunity to participate in PowerShift, a program that shifts participants’ energy use to times of the day when electricity is less expensive. Shifting when electricity is used helps lower peak power demand that keeps wholesale power and energy more affordable for everyone. Additionally, homeowners might receive a rebate for an energy efficiency upgrade, which also saves money in long-term energy costs. Business
owners can take advantage of Power Moves rebates for energy efficiency upgrades at new facilities or when relocating to an area served by your local cooperative. Businesses often use incentives such as these to invest more in their operations; in some cases, a local community’s incentives (including Power Moves rebates) can directly influence where a business owner decides to locate the company.
across Indiana, Illinois, and Missouri that partner together to create the Power Moves program. By offering the program collectively to more than 310,000 families, farms, and businesses, we can run the program in a more cost-effective way that might not be otherwise possible.
POWER MOVES PROVIDES ENERGY EFFICIENCY EXPERTISE. The Cooperative
Moves, we say that it pays to save – literally! Power Moves is a win-win program that reflects the cooperative principle Concern for Community. Coop members earn rebates for qualifying energy efficiency upgrades to their home or business that reduce their long-term energy use. Reducing energy consumption benefits the environment because fewer resources are needed to power those homes and businesses.
Principles call for Education, Training, and Information for the co-op’s members. The Power Moves team partners with your local cooperative’s energy advisor, facility managers, and many others to offer information on topics ranging from energy efficient homes, heating and cooling systems, and electric vehicles to retrofit upgrades that can lower long-term energy costs. We even have a list of Do-It-Yourself energy efficiency projects that you can do to improve your home!
YOUR LOCAL COOPERATIVE PARTNERS WITH ADDITIONAL MIDWESTERN CO-OPS TO MAKE THE PROGRAM SUCCESSFUL. Power Moves is an embodiment of the Cooperation Among Cooperatives principle! Your co-op is one of 23 co-ops
ENERGY EFFICIENCY IMPROVEMENTS BENEFIT PARTICIPANTS’ POCKETBOOKS – AND THE ENVIRONMENT. At Power
The Power Moves program can provide you with the advice and energy efficiency rebates that can help you and all your fellow cooperative members save! To learn more about how the program can benefit your home or business, visit www.PowerMoves.com or call your local electric co-op and ask to speak to the energy advisor.
Headless Horseman Festival provides Halloween tricks and treats BY RICHARD G. BIEVER Haunted houses and creepy corn mazes are crawling with chain-saw slinging Jasons, razor-fingered Freddy Kruegers,
Maze — featuring a regular maze and a haunted maze, and much more. The Corn Maze was voted one of the country’s 10 best corn mazes by USA Today readers.
and other gory ghouls from Hollywood
The Haunted Corn Maze is the festival’s
this time of year. But as you might expect
scary feature geared toward teens and
from a living history museum, Conner
young adults reared on the intense
Prairie digs a little deeper into American
fright night folklore to scare up its brand of the heebie-jeebies.
For this year’s celebration, Wehlage suggested visitors, especially those
Every year since the 1980s, the Headless
coming from outside the Indianapolis
Horseman has spurred down the shadowy
metro area, make a full day of the Conner
autumn trails around Conner Prairie’s
Prairie offerings. He urges folks to take in
1836 village past wagonloads of wide-
all the regular outdoor museum, programs
and fun during the daytime hours. Then
“He’s just one of the classic figures of Halloween,” notes Mark Wehlage, senior
come back for the festival in the evening.
Enter to win a Family Fun Pack of four tickets to “A Merry Prairie Holiday” from Nov. 29 to Dec. 31, courtesy of Conner Prairie. Visit indianaconnection.org/talk-tous/contests to enter.
Conner Prairie Headless Horseman Festival Oct. 10-13, 17-20, 24-27; 6-9 p.m. 13400 Allisonville Road Fishers, IN 46038 317-776-6000 or 800-966-1836 Advanced and presale tickets can be purchased online at https://www.connerprairie.org
(Note that separate tickets are required.)
manager of programs at Conner Prairie. “He’s that specter that’s frightening and terrifying, yet not as terrifying as the modern-day Freddy or Jason or those kinds of things. It’s just a classic American story that is a great way to celebrate Halloween.” Conner Prairie, the renowned Smithsonian-affiliated history village and museum in Fishers, will be hosting its Headless Horseman Festival over three extended weekends: Oct 10-13, Oct. 1720, and Oct. 24-27. Despite the passing apparition, the eight to 12-minute hayride is considered family friendly for all. Other festival attractions include: storytelling, the Legend of Sleepy Hollow marionette show, a magic show and a mad science show, a barrel-train ride for youngsters, a midway with Halloweenthemed carnival games, a 12-acre Corn The sight of the Headless Horseman elicits shrieks from Conner Prairie visitors. P H OTO PR OVID E D B Y C ON N E R P R A IR IE
Technology that drives our industry Top 3
responsibilities in a day: • Manage all IT-related operations for the cooperative. • Oversee infrastructure for the tower, radio and metering • Manage vendors to keep projects on task, on time and on budget. What’s a typical day like? My “day-to-day” changes often, but I like to check in with all departments first thing in the morning to make sure everything is working or to see if there is anything I can help them with that day. I work with vendors daily on support issues and to order new hardware, software or services. I verify server backups and update all systems when necessary. I’m always answering phone calls and emails from employees and attend meetings throughout the week to coordinate with all departments. What education and training was needed for this position? I hold an associate degree in computer information technology and am finishing up my Bachelor of Science in information technology. It’s recommended the IT manager has at least a bachelor’s degree and 5-plus years of experience in IT management.
Brandon Hall Manager of Information Technology Henry County REMC Have you had to master new skills to be successful in your position? Absolutely. Much of what I do is industry specific, so I attend many conferences and trainings each year to keep up with the technology that drives our industry. What part of your job do you find the most fulfilling? We are always implementing new technologies. Knowing that my work will benefit not only my team, but the members we serve is gratifying to me.
What’s the most challenging part of your job? We are currently a one-man IT shop. Finding the time throughout the day to complete tasks and projects is often challenging.
INTERESTED IN AN ELECTRIC CO-OP CAREER? Visit WePowerIndiana.org to learn about available careers or tell us about yourself.