Page 1

inMiddlebury Magazine P.O. Box 68 Middlebury, IN 46540

Postal Patrons

PRSRT STD U.S. POSTAGE ecrwsseddm PAID Berne, IN Permit No. 43

Celebrating Life in Middlebury, Indiana

February 2018

February is Pet Dental Health Month 515 E. Warren St. • Middlebury, IN


Hours: Mon. - Fri.: 8 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.

Free Dental Health Screenings for both cats and dogs


15% oFF Dr. Sara Granberg & Dr. Amber Sheppard

Dental Cleanings


Your Transportation Solution

• Family owned and operated since 2009 • Committed to driver retention • Most aggressive reload program in the industry • Highest percentage of overall loaded miles • Proud Community Sponsor

2311 S. Nappanee St. • Elkhart, IN • 574-293-3642

2 inMiddlebury Magazine  |  February 2018

Table of Contents Boys & Girls Club, 6 Meet Dan Welch Meet the Teacher, 7 Northridge Middle School Outdoor Living, 8 Connecting to nature through fiber arts


Middlebury Parks Department, 9

Middlebury Police Reserves,10 Scholar Athlete,13 Elkhart County Community Foundation CEO,16 A house full of History,17

23 Elkhart Civic Theater Renovation and Middlebury Lions club scholarships, 23 Northridge Athletes, 24

Middlebury Historical Museum, 21

February Cover: New signs have sprung up around

Middlebury, from parks to the town hall, including the one at Memorial Park, featured on this month’s cover.

Middlebury Chamber of Commerce, 27

Advertise with us Share your message with every home and business within the Middlebury School Corporation. We mail the magazine to homes and businesses throughout the Middlebury School District and publish it online. Your ad can reach each home for as low as 1.5¢ per address. Design is free with purchase of your ad. Our Account Managers are here to help, just give us a call at 574-825-9112.

Advertising deadline for the

March issue is February 9.

What’s Happening Online

inMiddlebury? Facebook


inMiddlebury Magazine  | February 2018 3

Community Calendar February

Editor’s Note:

Feb. 14

Happy Valentine’s Day

Feb. 19

Presidents’ Day - No School or Snow Makeup Day

History is all around us. Sometimes that history is big. More often than not, it’s personal.

Weekly Mon–Fri: Mon: Tues: WED:

REAL Services Lunch, Ages 60+, Greencroft Table Games, Greencroft – 6:30 p.m. Euchre, Greencroft – 6:30 p.m. Middlebury Exchange Club, Essenhaus – 6:30 a.m.


Optimist Club Breakfast, Essenhaus – 6:30 a.m.

MonthlY American Legion Dinners 5:30 - 7 p.m., Public welcome 1st Friday: All-You-Can-Eat Fish by the Legion 2nd Friday: Varied menu by Legion Riders 3rd Friday: A-Y-C-E Broasted Chicken by Auxiliary 4th Friday: Sandwich Baskets by SAL 5th Friday: Lasagna dinner by Boy Scout Troop 7 Last Saturday: Steak Grill – Call the Legion at 825-5121 for more information. 1St & 3rd Mondays: Town Council Meetings at Town Hall – 6 p.m. 1St & 3rd Wednesdays: Middlebury Men’s Club Meetings at the American Legion – 7 p.m. 2nd and 4th Mondays Middlebury Lions Club - 7 p.m., American Legion Hall

CONTRIBUTORS Publisher: William Connelly EDITOR: Guy Thompson GRAPHIC DESIGNER: Cori Vilardo Advertising: Scott Faust Contributing writer:Dr. Carla Gull STAFF PHOTOGRAPHERS: Russ Draper, Kris Mueller & Gloria Salavarria 4 inMiddlebury Magazine  |  February 2018

This month, we get a glimpse into one family’s history, centered on the farm that is still owned by the family 140 years after it was settled by German immigrants. It is great to see families not only embracing their history, but actively working to preserve it. Meanwhile, we take a look at the men and women who work to serve and protect our community, and do it all on a volunteer basis as reserve officers of the Middlebury Police Department. What a great way to help our community! We continue to spotlight teachers who are also making a big difference. This month, we stop at Northridge Middle School to talk to a team of 8th grade educators. We hope you enjoy this month’s celebration of life in Middlebury! Guy Thompson, Editor

Middlebury elementaries release Kindergarten Round-up dates for the 2018-2019 school year. Middlebury Elementary will hold Kindergarten Round-up from 3-6 p.m. on Tuesday, April 17. Parents should call the school at 825-2158 for an appointment. York Elementary will hold round-up from 3-6 p.m. on Wednesday, April 18. Parents should call the school at 825-5312 for an appointment. Orchard View Elementary will hold Kindergarden Round-up from 4-5 p.m. and 5:30-6:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 19. Parents should call the school at 825-5405 for an appointment. Jefferson Elementary Kindergarten Round-up will be from 3:45-6:15 p.m. on Thursday, April 26. Parents should contact the school at 822-5399 to pre-register and sign up for a specific time to bring their student in.

Milestones Birthday Wishes 2/2 Bill Watson 2/3 Brayden Kerns, 4 2/4 Doris Ann Troyer, 42 2/4 Austin Wyse, 12 2/5 Jayme Mast, 35 2/14 Patricia Miller, 40, Valentine Girl 2/26 Harry Burnstine 2/26 Kseniya Mater, 24 2/27 David Kramer, 37 We love you! 2/28

Victoria Smith

Happy 4th Birthday Brayden!

Happy 12th Birthday Austin! Happy Birthday Harry Burnstine!

Anniversary Wishes 2/25

Love, Christy, Scout & Ollie!

James & Heather Cameron, 12 years

Have a Celebration in March? Let us know by February 9. 1. Website: 2. Facebook: Click on the blue (Submit) tab 3. Mail: inMiddlebury Magazine: PO Box 68, Middlebury, IN 46540. Please include a phone number or email address in case we have a question. 4. Call us at: 574-825-9112

Happy Birthday Kseniya! Happy 40th Birthday Valentine Girl - Patricia! inMiddlebury Magazine  | February 2018 5

around town | Boys & Girls Club

Meet Dan Welch The Boys and Girls Club of Middlebury is excited to welcome Dan Welch to its leadership team. As an incoming unit director for the club, Welch will oversee the Middlebury Club facilities, operations, and staff development. Welch comes to Middlebury after having spent the last 26 years at the Boys and Girls Clubs of Porter County in Valparaiso, Ind. During that time, he served in many leadership roles and brings with him years of experience in youth development and program management. “I look forward to a new opportunity to work with the Middlebury staff to impact youth as much as possible,” Welch stated. In his most recent role as director of programs and outcomes with Porter County Boys and Girls Clubs, Welch led the implementation of membership experience surveys to inform program planning. He looks forward to bringing his experience and knowledge to help strengthen club programs in Middlebury. “In my first year, I hope to learn as much as possible about the team and our members so I can be as effective as possible,” he said.

As a club alum and 26-year veteran of Boys and Girls Clubs, Welch has seen firsthand what the Boys and Girls Club does for not only youth, but local communities across the nation. He is looking forward to working with everyone and bringing his experience and background to the Middlebury community.

This article is brought to you by:

CARDINAL BUSES a Middlebury family-owned business since 1923

574-825-9405 6 inMiddlebury Magazine  |  February 2018

Team members (L-R): Cathy Stout, Kim Cammenga, Jessica Cripe, Tim Luken, not pictured Nikki Belschner.

Northridge Middle School This team of 8th grade teachers at Northridge Middle School have a total of 104 years of teaching experience between them, and all of that experience is being shared every school day with the students. There are three teaching teams in the 8th grade at the school – Red, White, and Blue – who each take onethird of the students, around 150 per team, who remain with that team throughout the school year. This system gives teachers better opportunities to get to know each student. “We meet with each other and are very familiar with each student. We get to know about them,” Luken said. “They don’t fall through the cracks this way,” Belschner added. Luken and Cammenga share a classroom as well, teaching language arts and social studies. “Sharing the classroom, the students are in here for two periods and

we can incorporate our lessons. The students truly get double the amount of time,” Luken stated. Among the benefits for students is that each teacher has his and her own personality, and some students will gravitate toward the different personalities, Stout noted. “We also meet with each other,” Cripe added. “It’s our time to share.” That sharing of information on the students allows other teachers to be aware of any issues that may affect a student’s learning. In other schools without a team approach, Luken noted, “we never even see each other.” Important information would be lost between classrooms. Students also get to see the teachers work together, which is a lesson in itself. Students watch how professionals work side by side, and how mutual respect plays into that. “They (students) feel comfortable in here,” Luken noted. “They feel comfortable with us and come talk to us.” Stout and Cripe, teaching science and math, respectively, don’t share a classroom but look for opportunities to combine their lessons, especially with STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) projects. At the end of the year, all of the teachers work to combine all of the classrooms together, culminating in the 8th Grade Civil War Day in the spring. It can include first-person presentations where students portray historical figures, science, and more. Stout is in her first full year of teaching at NMS, and came from a larger school. “There had been about 2,000 students in the high school. Talk about getting lost in the crowd,” she said. “With this (team setup), it’s easier to know each student better.” Knowing their students so well, and taking time to focus on each one, allows this team of teachers to, as Cammenga put it, “build better students and a better community.”

Looking for a car? LOCAL LENDING. COMPETITIVE RATES. inMiddlebury Magazine  | February 2018 7

Outdoor LIVING

Connecting to

nature through

fiber arts

Carrie Beachy, a Middlebury resident, loves sharing her passion for fibers and nature with others. She teaches classes at her home and at Goshen Youth Arts on how to process fibers, use natural materials for dyeing, and use the fibers in artistic creations such as knitting, weaving, or marking dream catchers.


y five-year-old son and I recently attended a 10-week introduction to fiber arts with Beachy. We started the class learning about various natural fibers such as wool, cotton, silks, mulberry, and even stinging nettle. We were able to process the drying stinging nettle from plants she collected in the local area. We separated the fibers from the rest of the plant. We also learned how to use a

drop spindle and spinning wheel to spin wool to make yarn after cleaning and combing the local wool. After preparing fibers, we started making dyes. We collected black walnuts in nearby yards, using gloves to take off the outer shells. We cracked open acorns (above left circle) to use the shells for dyes as well. We grated fresh beets and turmeric for other dyes. Beachy also had made rust, sumac, and mulberry dyes to share with the class. We dyed cotton, silk, and linen fabric samples and paper, using a mordant to set the dye (top circle). Each fabric reacted differently to the dyes and mordant. We even experimented with bases and acids. After dyeing and drying the fabric samples, we added them to our journals. We used the dyed yarns to create a weaving on a loom. We also could weave in stinging nettle fibers and wool roving for added texture in our wall hangings. Row after row, we handled the mulberry, acorn, and

sumac-dyed natural fibers, telling a story of our time together (lower right circle). We had a great 10 weeks dedicating time to natural dyes and fibers. The hands-on approach helped us connect to the natural elements as well as appreciate the time spent on creating our textiles. In a fast-paced world with easy access to resources, we slowed down to appreciate the work put into our clothing and textiles. We also connected to our local sense of place and nature. As a mixed media muralist, Beachy explores many artistic pursuits, with a passion for connecting others to nature and their creative sides. Find her at The Fiber Nest on Facebook or https:// She has a class on Kitchen Dyes in Middlebury February 18 and one on March 18 on a Season Wheel, creating a circular weaving to add natural elements throughout the season. She is also available for fiber experiences at parties and sells her artwork.

A Walk in the Garden:

A guide to Krider World’s Fair Garden and its history Krider World’s Fair Garden is today the jewel of Middlebury’s parks, but the history and background of the park is the story of the Krider family, Krider Nurseries, and in general, the town of Middlebury. To preserve and recognize this heritage, a group led by the Friends of the Middlebury Parks developed the Walk in the Garden guide book. This 52-page book tells about the Krider family and Krider Nurseries. It is a guide through the garden and descriptions of the major sites with new and old photographs. It also includes stories written by members of the Wesdorp and Krider families and a timeline of events. The book may be purchased on (printed book or Kindle version) or is available at the Middlebury Community Public Library.

New park signs

As part of the Middlebury strategic plan, the town and a committee of citizens designed a series of way-finding signs that have recently been installed, including directional, parking, Welcome to Middlebury, and park signs to guide residents, and especially visitors, to their destination. The new colorful signage is designed in a uniform style for easy identification and readability. The new park signs include a graphic illustrating a significant feature of the park: Krider World’s Fair Garden has the Dutch windmill and Riverbend Park shows the river and a slide.



What’s Happening in the Parks by the Middlebury Park Board

A backdrop of beauty

Love is in the air and for those planning a wedding, consider Middlebury’s landmark Krider World’s Fair Garden for your special event. The gardens offer a stunning backdrop for weddings and photographs immersed in the tranquility of waterfalls, ponds, and spectacular blooms. To continue your celebration and reception, guests can stroll through lush vegetation over to Trestle Terrace, an open space for tents or canopies that is operated by Friends of the Parks and is adjacent to the gardens. Celebrate locally in our beautiful surroundings! For more information and reservations, contact the Middlebury Town Hall at 574-825-1499. Reservation contact for Trestle Terrace is Dick Cook at 574-596-3802.

inMiddlebury Magazine  | February 2018 9

Middlebury reserve officers serving the community

Reserve officers (L-R): John Meadows, Anthony Powell, Cpl. Jeff Wodtkey, Laura Perry, Steve Miller, Austin Miller, Andrew Edlund, Cpl. Doug Edlund. Officers not present: Mark Diamond, Rebekah Cooper. Town Marshal Kevin Miller – far right.


iddlebury’s police department stands apart from most other police departments, in part due to the group of reserve police officers who play a significant role in the day to day activity of the department. The Middlebury Police Department has 10 reserve officers, all of whom go through the same training as a full-time police officer. These 10 reserve officers donate their time to keep Middlebury safe. A reserve officer’s training requires 40 hours of state mandated training involving firearms, EVOC (emergency vehicle operations course) defensive tactics, criminal law, taser, pepper spray, and traffic stops. These individuals are required to complete this training in order to become a reserve officer, the same as any law enforcement officer. The reserve police officers then go through 160 hours of on-the-go job training, but not by themselves. There will be another police officer not far behind, following the reserve officer until he or she feels comfortable, which could take a few months. Every year all officers are

10 inMiddlebury Magazine  |  February 2018

by April Givens required to pass and obtain state requirements for each of these trainings. The firearms training takes place at two different shooting ranges in Elkhart County and includes handguns and rifles. The officers are required to score the state’s requirements for passing. The unique thing about the reserve police officers of Middlebury is that they are volunteers. Scheduled three set days a week, Friday nights, Saturday morning and Saturday nights, the reserve police officers also fill in when needed. There are many times when the reserve police officers are the only officers on duty. This is not unusual. “We train them right. And do not just turn them loose. We make sure they are ready to be out there and they do a great job!” said Middlebury Town Marshal Kevin Miller. There is nothing on the reserve police officer’s uniform that says he or she is a reserve officer. The public does not know. These reserve officers patrol, work security, and enforce the law just like a full-time police officer. “In the 24 years I have been around this department, the reserve

Middlebury Police Department 418 N. Main St. Middlebury, IN 46540

officers have never embarrassed the department. I need them more than they need me,” Town Marshal Miller added. There are seven full-time police officers and the reserve police officers supplement the full-timers, back them up, and are a major asset to the department. Usually you will find one full-time officer and a reserve police officer scheduled together for their shift. The requirements are different to be a reserve police officer in other departments, and not all departments have reserve police officers. This is how Middlebury’s police department operates, and it serves the community well. “I’ve always wanted to be an officer since I was a kid,” stated Steve Miller, a Middlebury reserve police officer. “ “I am here to serve the community. To let the community know we are here and we are driving around, keeping an eye on the community, and keeping it safe.” The Middlebury reserve police officers currently are Doug Edlund, Andrew Edlund, John Meadows, Jeff Woodtkey, Steve Miller, Anthony Powell, Laura Perry, Mark Diamond, Rebekah Cooper, and Austin Miller.

inMiddlebury Magazine  | February 2018 11

Shelley Becker named new executive director of LoveWay

Shelley Becker has been selected as the new executive director of LoveWay, Inc. Located near Middlebury, LoveWay is a premier accredited center of PATH (Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship) International, serving individuals with special needs. “We are excited to announce Shelley’s promotion to executive director,” stated April Klein-Carroll, president of LoveWay’s board of directors. “She has a rich history with LoveWay and a heartwarming passion for our mission. The board is confident that the depth of Shelley’s character, experience and motivation will help LoveWay develop in a way that continues to deepen its impact on the community.” Becker is excited to accept the challenges of the position. “I began as a volunteer who was uncertain of how to interact with horses and special needs persons. Seeing the magical transformation that took place through therapeutic riding moved me in ways that words cannot describe. My love and respect for the riders and horses grew in a way that inspired me to do more and I decided to become a PATH-certified

Insurance • Investment • Retirement

instructor,” she said. She notes that “LoveWay has always been more than a ‘job’ to me, it’s been an honor and blessing to work for such an incredible organization.” Becker holds a Bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts from Indiana State University. She originally came to LoveWay as a volunteer in 2008 and in addition to becoming an instructor, she served as development associate, grant writer and fundraising/marketing director from 2011-2015. She returned to the staff in September 2017. LoveWay was founded in 1973 by Sandy and Gary Weatherwax in memory of their 16-year-old daughter Laurie, who was inspired by therapeutic riding. They began giving lessons in their driveway with the help of specially selected horses and volunteers. LoveWay now serves around 300 riders each year with the help of 150 volunteers, a staff of around a dozen members, and 17 members of its equine team. LoveWay has a heated indoor arena and stable, an outdoor arena, and wooded riding trails at its 29acre center.

Russ Draper Photography

Eugene Bontrager INVESTMENT ADVISOR REPRESENTATIVE Branch Office Manager

(c) 574.537.2534 426 N. Main St. • Suite 4 Middlebury, IN 46540 Securities and Investment Advisory Services offered through Transamerica Financial Advisors, Inc. (TFA), Transamerica Financial Group Division - Member FINRA, SIPC, and Registered Investment Advisor. Non-Securities products and services are not offered through TFA. TFG001880-10/13.

12 inMiddlebury Magazine  |  February 2018

CONTACT 574.361.3903

The Scholar Athlete Mentoring Spirit, Mind, Body

Conner Graber


Football and Wrestling

Conner Graber is the son of Ted and Rolonda Graber and is a senior at Northridge High School. Conner’s favorite class is Sports and Recreation, as he loves competing and playing sports. After high school, he wants to wrestle in college and is considering majoring in something business-related. Coach Highley said of Conner: “Conner is a very humble yet hungry wrestler. He is always looking for ways to improve and keeps evolving. This is what sets him apart from most other wrestlers, many keep working on things they are already good at but Conner has grown in every aspect of his wrestling. His work ethic is as good as anyone’s, but he also uses his brain when training. He is a special young man and we have been blessed at Northridge to have him the last four years!”

A very PROUD Member of the Indiana State Poultry Association

12215 CR 10, Middlebury 574-825-9537

Our CORE Values define who we are . . . with that, our Mission is simple: To provide the best value to our customers through quality products, honest people, industry-leading practices and a commitment to excellence in animal care and all that we do. Responsibly Delivering Excellence while Creating Significance THE NATURAL WAY “IS THE RIGHT WAY”! THAT IS OUR GOAL! THAT IS WHAT WE DO!


inMiddlebury Magazine  | February 2018 13







sweetie s d i k r u o y h t i ...w s d n e i r f r u o y h ...wit

r ...with you


Valentine ’s Day Sun. - Thur. 11am-10pm Fri. & Sat. 11am-11pm


Valentine’s Day Special$ 99 1 appetizer to share

2 Meals from our Valentine Menu


1 dessert to share • 1 appetizer to share Good only for Valentine’s Weekend • 2 meals from our Valentine menu Heart•shaped pizzas to available 1 dessert share


Wednesday is Half Priced Wine Day

and a free flower!

Good only for Valentine’s Weekend.

We Deliver!

574-825-7222 574-293-0222

851 U.S. 20, Suite 2, Middlebury • 54595 C R 17, Elkhart

y a D s e n i Valent ’ This

Spread the

Lo Ve

with a Bouquet, P lush , Balloons & Candies.

Flower Basket

500 Spring Valley Plaza • Across from Northridge High School

825-7673 (ROSE)

Valentine’s Day STAY – $130


• A night’s stay for 2 at the Inn • Chocolates, a single rose, & sparkling grape juice




SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 17 9 am - 2 pm

Train Show Campus-wide event vendors • train layouts kids craft • trolleys

Feb. 14

Subj Ava ect to Exclusilability. ions ap ply.

STAY & DINE – $165

• Dinner for 2 at the Restaurant • A night’s stay for 2 at the Inn • Chocolates, a single rose, & sparkling grape juice

FORGIVEN An Essenhaus Easter Production

Mar. 8 - 31

240 US 20 • Middlebury, IN • 800-455-9471 • inMiddlebury Magazine  | February 2018 15

Community Foundation of Elkhart County announces

New Chief Program Officer Candy Yoder, president and CEO will mark a key change in leadership,

of Child and Parent Services (CAPS), will join the Community Foundation of Elkhart County this summer as chief program officer. Her transition is expected to be completed by July 1, 2018. Yoder joined CAPS in 1989 as a program coordinator leading the development of new programs. In 1993, she became vice president for programs and services. In 2009, when Daryl Abbot retired after leading CAPS from its inception in the 1970s, Yoder took over as president and CEO.

CAPS was founded to combat child abuse in Elkhart County. Under Yoder’s leadership, the agency has grown to include seven programs focused on helping families and children, including a preschool, Triple P parenting program, supervised visitations, Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), the Child and Family Advocacy Center, and several home visiting programs. CAPS serves more than 6,000 children and families annually. In 2017, CAPS opened the new Joy Rose Center, a base for its operations which supporters had contributed $5 .7 million to build. “We’re thrilled to add someone of Candy’s caliber to the Community Foundation of Elkhart County’s team,” said Community Foundation President Pete McCown. “She has been a tireless advocate for children and families at CAPS and done a remarkable job. Having her continue that work in her role as chief program officer at the foundation makes our community even stronger.” While Yoder’s transition to the Community Foundation of Elkhart County

CAPS is positioned well to continue to provide programs and services in fulfilling its mission. The 21-member board is committed to the Vision 2020 strategic plan. With the strength of the overall staff of 90 employees and more than 100 volunteers, the board will follow the clear roadmap for continued service and growth into the future. “Candy’s transition to the Community Foundation of Elkhart County notes her commitment to our community and the many positive partnerships that benefit the people of Elkhart County,” said Brian Hall, CAPS board chairman. “We’re grateful for her years of leadership and are confident we will find someone to lead CAPS as it continues to grow.” The agency is strong and child abuse in Elkhart County is decreasing. Since 2008, child abuse rates have risen 35 percent in Indiana, but declined 10 percent in the county, Yoder stated. “So many people come together to help children and families in our communities,” she said. “Working with them at CAPS has been wonderful and I’m excited about what we can do together in this community in the future.”

In her new role at the Community Foundation of Elkhart County, Yoder will focus on programs that benefit children and families. She will join staff members at the foundation who encourage grant applications that make a difference in the community. Volunteer committee members then make decisions on the largest grants. The Community Foundation of Elkhart County, which is in its 29th year, awarded more than $18 million in grants in the last fiscal year, including more than $2 million in scholarships. The foundation continues to grow. In the fiscal year that ended June 30, donors gave more than $26 million to various funds managed by the foundation and the total assets under management grew to $272 million. Elkhart County ranks in the top 100 in four categories in the 2016 Columbus Survey, which measures community foundations across the United States.

Both CAPS and the Community Foundation of Elkhart County share the goal of strengthening the community by helping families and young people succeed. While CAPS has a goal of ensuring that every child lives a life free from abuse and neglect, the community foundation takes a broader role and continues to support not only CAPS, but other agencies and projects making life better for Elkhart County residents.

Are you comfortable in your skin or does a shower leave you feeling dry? Hawkins Water Tech can help.

We deliver softer skin. 16 inMiddlebury Magazine  |  February 2018 P-HWT-014 = Soft Skin Size: 7.375” x 1.5”"

Prepared by Todd Allen Design, Inc. 574.295.8866 InMiddlebury

A house full of


The house built in 1895 was already 20 years old in one of the earliest photos taken at the farm, below. Above, the house hadn’t changed much by 1960, but a side entrance and porch had already been removed.

by Guy Thompson

History isn’t always found in large places. Sometimes, it can be found in an old sorghum container filled with papers from generations past. Rob Scrogham and his family – wife Amanda, son Logan and daughter Madison– are the current owners of a farm that has been in Rob’s family for 140 years. Sitting along SR 120 a little east of SR 13, it was founded by Rob’s great-greatgrandfather, Gustav Wittlinger, in 1878. The first family lived in a small building next to the barn for the first few years, Rob said, before building their house in 1895. And the house has been full of history ever since. inMiddlebury Magazine  | February 2018 17

The farm along SR 120 has been around 140 years, and seen all of the changes in farming come and go, including loading straw and hay into the hayloft in the photo from 1915, above. In the middle photo, Gustav Wittlinger is pictured standing left along with his family, including Gustav Jr., seated left, who would inherit the farm, the first of four more generations. Lower right, the farm as it looked from the air in 1963, two years before a tornado would demolish the barn to the far right. 18 inMiddlebury Magazine  |  February 2018

Gustav was a German immigrant from Wurttemburg, who listed himself as a mechanic when he arrived in the U.S. The house itself was built from trees harvested from the property, Rob pointed out. The farm even predates the road in front of it, as rocks and gravel from the farm were actually used to fill in a low spot just to the west on SR 120. The farm changed over the years as it passed to the next generation, and Rob has documents showing items sold from the farm and how much hired hands were paid dating back to the turn of the century – the previous century, that is. Soon, Rob was working with his father, Gene, on the farm as well. In the late 1990s, joking that they had a “rock farm” due to all of the rocks they uncovered in the fields, they approached a local quarry, who took a look at the property and found it was rich with rocks. “You could cut into a hill and rocks would pour out,” Rob recalled. Soon, the farmland was leased out to the gravel quarry, which surrounds the house today. A few years after his father’s death, Rob and his family moved into the house. “I knew this is where I wanted to be,” he said. “I was never much of a history buff, but getting into this (the house), it sucks you in.” As the family works to refurbish the house with an eye to the historical elements, they continue to find more history, sometimes hidden, throughout the house. A lot of what they find can be listed under “they don’t build it like this anymore.” Solid rock foundations over two feet wide, ornate window latches and door hinges, wide wooden planks, and more. Rob and Amanda have been doing painstaking work to refurbish as much of the historic hardware as they can. The window latches, for example, are dated 1888. They’ve

Above, a view into the barnyard, circa 1925, showing the back of the house at that time and outbuildings that have changed over the years.

stripped and refinished doors. Fixed walls. All with an eye on the history of the building itself. Sometimes, the finds are amazing, like a collection of records dating back to 1880. Or the above-mentioned sorghum container that had kept its papers in pristine condition for nearly a century. There is the old journal of farm sales, listing transactions and who they were with, up until 1950. Other finds are unique to the history of the area. There is a small cemetery on the farm and, along with family members, it contains the resting place of the first school shooting victim in LaGrange County. A teacher was killed by an ex-boyfriend in 1871 in the school near Stone Lake.

For Rob and his family, the history is more personal than anything else. Each room has a story. Cabinets were made by great-grandfathers and great-greatgrandfathers. The split door between what had been the dining room and sitting room made especially for that spot. They find items, books, papers, as they work. One room in the house was a spot where Rob, as a young child, was forbidden to go into, he recalled. “Grandma said stay out, so we stayed out,” he remembered. It was 16 years after her death before he actually went into it, expecting it to be a small closet. Instead, it was a 16 ft. deep closet filled with a variety of items dating from the 1950s up through the moon landings. “There were baseball cards.

Newspapers. Lots of photos,” Rob said. Many of those were photos of family and friends, which while maybe not valuable to others, meant the world to the family to find and save. Helen Scrogham, his grandmother, had her 1924 high school yearbook in there, filled with signatures and stories from classmates, including remembrances of their first plane ride, held at the LaGrange County Fairgrounds that year. Helen and her husband, Fred, were among those honored back in 1987 with the Hoosier Homestead Award, recognition from the state for family farms that are 100 years or older. At the time, she recalled working on the farm, and, it was noted, she enjoyed rock collecting. And now, 30 years on, it is still in the family. Still being watched after. And still filled with history.

In the lower left photo is Rob Scrogham’s grandmother, Helen, right, as a child with her brother, Maxie, and an unnamed friend in front of the family farm. To the left of them is where, someday, SR 120 would be built. inMiddlebury Magazine  | February 2018 19


Sale ★ February 6 - 26 Living • Bedroom • Dining • Locally Made Mattresses Downtown Middlebury • 574-825-1902 •M-F 9 am-5 pm, Sat 9 am-4 pm

Sonaalvl fuernit1ur0e an%d mattress orders!

Selec Cleara t Items nce Up To

40% OFF

Promote your business in over 10,200 households by advertising in our

Annual Bridal Section

coming in the March issue of the inMiddlebury Magazine. Contact Scott Faust advertising@inmiddlebury or call 260-463-1896.

Celebrating Life in Middlebury, Indiana 20 inMiddlebury Magazine  |  February 2018

‘The past to the present’

The motto of the Middlebury Community Historical Museum is “Bringing the Past to Life.” With this idea in mind, a group of Middlebury area residents decided to form a historical society in 2002. This led to the eventual grand opening of the museum in October 2004, on property and in a building donated by Roger and Sandra Nielsen for that purpose. The facility and organization was created to preserve and interpret the history of the Middlebury community, including Jefferson, Middlebury, and York townships. While this region does not have any Civil War battle sites, locations of Indian massacres or looming natural wonders, there is a rich “people” history. This area represents what middle-America was and has become. There have been folks with shady pasts and those whose actions have been heroic, and everything in-between. It was supposed to be the retirement location of a U.S. vice president, although that never came to pass. Because of limited space, the museum displays this past in themed exhibits rather than a continuous timeline. There have been exhibits on agriculture, WWII, old businesses, schools, civic organizations, sports, drama, and music. Also, there have been special interest displays of fine art, folk art, model

railroads, antique toys, antique tractors, personal collections and, most recently, antique quilts. The museum is presently preparing an exhibit of third and fourth generation businesses, set to open in the spring of 2018. Some of the items on display are loaned to the museum for that purpose, and some come from the museum’s collection. One area of the museum is dedicated to the display of works by a selected local artist and will remain on display for several months. Local artist Joe Mayberry’s paintings have been selected to open the 2018 season. Additionally, the historical society and the museum are involved in a number of local programs, such as the summer and fall festivals, the Middlebury History Walks, Middlebury: Then and Now, Vibrant Communities activities, and the Middlebury Community Enrichment Council. The museum is a destination for field trips from the Middlebury Community Schools, as well as some private educational groups. There will be more programs and activities that are sponsored by the historical society in partnership with other community organizations, such as the Friends of the Middlebury Parks, the Friends of the Middlebury Community Library, and the Chamber of Commerce, as 2018 unfolds. The Middlebury Community Historical Museum is located at 301 Bristol Ave. (CR 8), across the street from Krider Gardens. It is a private, not-for-profit corporation, primarily funded by donations. When the museum reopens for the 2018 season, the hours of operation will be 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thurdays, and 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. on Saturdays. Admission is free. inMiddlebury Magazine  | February 2018 21


miss the opportunity to advertise in the

2018 shipshewana

Flea Market Guide available free-of-charge to all visitors at the Shipshewana Flea Market and through the laGrange County Convention & Visitors Bureau.

Includes Shipshewana Flea Market town map and area map with advertisors’ locations clearly marked


thousanDs of people weekly

SPeCial OFFer!

5% discount on orders received with payment prior to

March 16, 2018

Quarter Page........$495 Half Page.............$825 Full Page............$1,350

Contact Scott at 260-463-1896


Elkhart Civic Theatre halfway mark in renovation fundraising Elkhart Civic Theatre (ECT) is planning a major renovation for the old Bristol Opera House and is currently at the 50 percent mark against a challenge grant from the Community Foundation of Elkhart County. The planned renovation will mean more comfort for patrons with a new men’s restroom and improved traffic flow for patrons attending ECT’s plays and musicals. New space will be opened up in the theatre’s front lobby and the concessions area will be reconfigured. Exterior improvements are also planned, but will retain the old-time character of the 120-yearold theatre. “The whole point is to upgrade the theatre-going Elkhart Civic Theatre Board President Erin Bantz and Executive experience here at the Bristol Opera House,” said Director Dave Dufour look over the floorplan and design for lobby Executive Director Dave Dufour. “We upgraded the renovations at the Bristol Opera House. The theatre is currently raising funds to match a $50,500 challenge grant from the women’s restroom three years ago and this renovation Community Foundation of Elkhart County. will complete that process with the new men’s room and a number of other improvements to reduce congestion and open up space around our auditorium entrances.” Total cost of the project is estimated at $110,000, with the community foundation providing a challenge grant of $50,500. Recently, ECT passed the halfway mark in reaching its portion of the challenge grant and continues to solicit donations for the remaining $25,000-$35,000 needed. ECT produces six mainstage plays and musicals every year, along with two full youth productions – plus a summer youth theatre camp culminating in a full musical and a readers’ theatre production – and additional special events.

The scholarships will be awarded based on the following criteria: • Students accumulative GPA must be above 2.5. • Service in the community.

Middlebury Lions offering two NHS scholarships The Middlebury Lions Club announced it will offer two Northridge High School seniors a scholarship in the amount of $500 each to go toward any trade school or otherwise higher learning (certification program, university, college, etc.).

• A brief essay (guidelines located at the end of the application). The application and essay need to be completed and turned into a guidance counselor before March 16, and can be picked up at the high school guidance counselor’s office or found on the Middlebury Lions Club Facebook page

inMiddlebury Magazine  | February 2018 23

Northridge Athletes

photos taken by Russ Draper


Northridge senior and Grand Valley State University commit Brooke McKinley drives to the basket in a recent matchup with the Goshen Redhawks.

>>>>>>>>>>> Northridge sophomore Camden Knepp lines up a three-point basket during the Raiders’ battle with Penn on January 16. 24 inMiddlebury Magazine  |  February 2018

>>>>>>>>>>> Northridge sophomore Jenna Nethercutt was seeded third after Thursday prelims, but when Saturday finals came along she would swim herself into first place with a time of 1:07.50 to edge fellow Raider Haley Dygert, who finished with a 2nd place time of 1:07.70.



Northridge Girls Swim/Dive Team outdistanced rival Concord 574452 to claim the NLC Championship held January 13 at the Northridge Natatorium.

First State Bank is pleased to offer our School Spirit Debit Card Program. The School Spirit Debit Card can be used at ATMs or for purchases, just like a regular debit card. By using this card, First State Bank will make a donation to your school each time you swipe, press credit, and sign. There is NO cost to you or your school! Goshen • Elkhart • Middlebury • Mishawaka • South Bend inMiddlebury Magazine  | February 2018 25

Glen Oaks COMMUNITY COLLEGE 62249 Shimmel Rd. • Centreville, MI 49032 (269) 467-9945

26 inMiddlebury Magazine  |  February 2018

Associate Degree and Certificate Programs

The mission of the Middlebury Chamber of Commerce is to promote economic opportunity through education, business and community leadership and to enhance the social and civic environment of Middlebury. Contact Information: Executive Director Sheri Howland  Community Outreach Coordinator Carmen Carpenter 574-825-4300 2018 Legacy Members: GOLD MEMBERS: Jayco, Inc. • L & W Engineering, Inc. BRONZE MEMBERS: Edward Jones of Middlebury Forks County Line Stores Hawkins Water Tech Legacy Home Furniture • Middlebury Produce

The Middlebury Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Center is currently accepting proposals from the Chamber members to present an hour and a half Lunch & Learn session. These seminars are held on the last Thursday of each month starting in April. Don’t miss this great opportunity to showcase your business, organization or non-profit. Not available to present? Call us we have a unique opportunity waiting for you. Complete the Lunch & Learn Seminar Proposal form and return at your first opportunity. If you have any questions, please contact Sheri Howland or Carmen Carpenter at 574.825.4300 or at Name: Business/Organization:




Biographical information to be used for marketing the session:

_ _ _

Seminar Title:


Seminar Description:

_ _ _

inMiddlebury Magazine  | February 2018 27


Business Directory Advertise in our Business Directory for as low as $50 a month!



Home Improvement

202 W. Spring St. • Middlebury, IN

Specializing in Residential Interior Painting

851 US 20 Next To Rulli’s Middlebury 574-358-0146

Steve Nisley 574-849-4788


(574) 370-4002

Crystal Valley Wellness Center, LLC Come try a session on us!

Pet Food and Accessories 851 US 20 • Middlebury 574-825-3238

Retaining Walls • Outdoor Kitchens • Fire Pits Paver Patios & Walkways • Landscaping Decorative Concrete Curbing

801 Wayne St. #6 Middlebury, IN 46540 (574) 358-0275

Chris Gunn Groomer



Fay S c hwar t z (574) 825-2880

Divorce • Wills • Trusts • Probate • Guardianship DUI / OWI • Criminal Defense Corporations • LLC’s • Real Estate Licensed in Indiana & Michigan 103 N. Brown Street • Middlebury, IN

For more information call


or email 28 inMiddlebury Magazine  |  February 2018


Easy cut-out page! Shipshewana

Lower level of the Davis Mercantile


25% off

one regular priced item. Must present coupon. Expires 02-28-18

Call For Appointment. *must present coupon to redeem offer.

Bundle includes:

• 5# Ground Turkey • 5# Ground Chicken • 5# Ground Italian Chicken • 2# Italian Chicken Brats All wrapped in one-pound packages



$5 OFF

Women’s haircut - $15 men’s haircut - $13 Perms starts at - $58 shellac - $25 all over color starts at - $50 Hours: Tues: 11 am-7 pm (by appointment) Wed: 7 am-4 pm (Later by appointment) • Thur-Fri: 7 am-4 pm Saturday: 7 am-12:30 pm

Electric Pineapple

expires 02-28-18


Walk-ins welcome until


Hair Salon

• Karlene • Morgan • Janele • Brittany

102 N. Chaptoula • Bristol, IN 46507 • 574-848-4955

41° North

$2 Off any large salad


Exp: 02-28-18

Everyday Prices

Nerium Representative

Alignment Special 95 $

Excludes side salad. Limit one per group. Valid February 1-28, 2018

104 S. Main St., Middlebury, IN • (574) 358-0314


homem’s ade ic e cr e a m

422 South Main, Middlebury • 825-2565

Chicken & Turkey Bundles*

Tuesday: 50% off Build

Regular price $52 Exp: 2-28-18 *Must present coupon

$5 Burger nighT

101 Wayne St. Middlebury • 574-825-2940


10 Hair Care %


Your own Pizza wednesday:

EXP: 02-28-18

Come in and check out our new menu!

Offering grinders, pizzas, burgers, salads and MORE...

$10 off

Heating season

off 15% All Terry NATurAlly

Clean & CHeCk


Exp: 02-28-18

A Fusion of Technology & Service

ProducTs Exp: 02-28-18

203 Wayne Street • Middlebury • 574-825-8824 •

Independent $45

The Middlebury

3-YEAR SUBSCRIPTION Call or Send Check with Coupon.

*Valid to residents of Elkhart, LaGrange and St. Joseph counties only.


inMiddlebury Magazine  | February 2018 29


Easy cut-out page!


10 Hair Care %

Everyday Prices

Women’s haircut - $15 men’s haircut - $13 Perms starts at - $58 shellac - $25 all over color starts at - $50




Hours: Tues: 11 am-7 pm (by appointment) Wed: 7 am-4 pm (Later by appointment) • Thur-Fri: 7 am-4 pm Saturday: 7 am-12:30 pm

Electric Pineapple

expires 02-28-18

Nerium Representative


• Karlene • Morgan • Janele • Brittany


Lower level of the Davis Mercantile

Walk-ins welcome until


Hair Salon

102 N. Chaptoula • Bristol, IN 46507 • 574-848-4955

41° North Restaurant & Bar

13024 US 20 • Middlebury, IN

(with family dining)


104 S. Main St., Middlebury, IN • (574) 358-0314


homem’s ade ic e cr e a m

422 South Main, Middlebury • 825-2565

Buy ONE Cone, Get the second one HALF OFF

...smoked meats, cheese, and one nice butcher!

Exp. 02-28-18

Call now for a free quote on a Trane System


HEATING & COOLING A Fusion of Technology & Service

HOURS: M-F 9a-5p, Sat 9a-2p

108 S Main St, Middlebury In the Middlebury Mercantile

203 Wayne street, Middlebury



The Middlebury

260.463.2166 • PO Box 148 • LaGrange, IN 46761 30 inMiddlebury Magazine  |  February 2018

cordially invites you to their

15th Annual Dinner

featuring Nick Kieffer, CEO of the Goshen Chamber of Commerce, “Goshen 2017 Community of the Year” Award. Vibrant Communities update presented by Diana Lawson, CEO of the Elkhart County Conventionand Visitors Bureau. Mary Cripe, Middlebury Town Manager, will present a brief Town of Middlebury project update.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

5:30 p.m. Business Expo opens. 6:30 p.m. Dinner and Presentation. Northridge High School Cafeteria 56779 Northridge Drive Middlebury Rsvp by March 5 The mission of the Middlebury Chamber of Commerce is to promote economic opportunity through education, business and community leadership and to enhance the social and civic environment of Middlebury. Contact Information: Executive Director Sheri Howland  • Community Outreach Coordinator Carmen Carpenter • 574-825-4300 • 2018 Legacy Members: GOLD MEMBERS: Jayco, Inc. • L & W Engineering, Inc. BRONZE MEMBERS: Edward Jones of Middlebury • Forks County Line Stores Hawkins Water Tech • Legacy Home Furniture • Middlebury Produce

inMiddlebury Magazine  | February 2018 31

H O u 15% OFF n s e e p Oaturday, February 10 STOREWIDE Every dog or cat gets a treat!




Pet Food & Accessories

851 US 20 • Middlebury • 574-825-3238 • Chris Gunn, Groomer


• Newest phoNes • superior Customer serviCe • Best Network stop in and ask how we can help you! 851 US 20 • Next To Rulli’s • Middlebury • 574-358-0146

2018 february inmiddlebury magazine  

Celebrating Life in Middlebury, Indiana

2018 february inmiddlebury magazine  

Celebrating Life in Middlebury, Indiana