The LaFontaine Town Festival Committee would like to encourage the area of Liberty Township and the community of LaFontaine to start planning ahead for Ashland Days, LaFontaine Town’s Festival. The Festival is taking place on Friday, June 20 and Saturday June 21.
This year the committee has taken a different approach to the festival. It was decided in January that this year’s town festival would be dedicated to our local hometown heroes. The town is celebrating local veterans of the past and present at the festival.
As part of this event the committee has been putting together a local veterans roll call. To honor these veterans, the committee needs the names of those who have served. The committee has been collecting names and information by having several Veteran’s Coffee and Snack meetings. More of these get-togethers have been scheduled for the following dates: April 29, May 13, May 17 and June 14. The coffee and snack meetings are at 9 a.m. in the LaFontaine Community Center. Those who cannot attend can contact the festival committee for a roll call form.
D. Randall Brown, chair of the Board of Trustees at Manchester University, announced at the April 10 donor appreciation dinner that the university’s student union would be renamed the Jo Young Switzer Center.
President Switzer will be retiring June 30. During Switzer’s tenure, the University has increased enrollment 25 percent, added a four-year Doctor of Pharmacy program on a new Fort Wayne campus, raised more than 95 percent toward a Students First! $100 million campaign and dedicated several new learning facilities, including the student union.
“As president of Manchester Student Senate, I see what a direct impact donor dollars have on our student body,” said junior Chris Miller, a political science major from New Paris. “Naming our campus buildings after these generous families and individuals reminds students that there are thousands of people working behind the scenes to ensure that they have a positive experience at Manchester, a true testament to our emphasis on community and putting students first.”
Students are also thanking and celebrating President Jo Young Switzer with a gallery, featuring photographs from her Manchester University years.
Hundreds previewed the exhibit at a special University donor event. Students in Advanced Public Relations will accompany the exhibit.
The 41 photographs will be on public display Saturday, April 12 through MU Alumni Days on May 28-29.
The Wabash River Defenders have announced that this year’s river initiative, the 62 Ton RiverFest, will revolve around celebrating the success of the past three river cleanup campaigns and the hundreds of volunteers who dedicated their time and resources to protecting our natural waterway.
On Saturday, July 26 the public is invited to participate in a group/family float along the Wabash River. It will be launching from Lagro from 9—10 a.m. and getting off of the river at the Carroll St. access point in Wabash.
The Wabash River Defenders (WRD) and the Knights of Columbus will host a celebratory lunch and concert at Paradise Spring Historical Park beginning at noon. This completely free event will include all-you-can-eat Wabash River Silver Tail and Riverbank Tatters along with a live musical performance by Small Town.
“This entire county has worked tirelessly over the last three years removing 62 tons of debris and pollutants from the water and the banks of the entire length of the Wabash River,” said Michael Beauchamp, founder of the Wabash River Defenders. “That is just over 19 miles from Miami to Huntington counties.”
The Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) announces that Wednesday, April 16, weather permitting, SR 15 and SR 14 are scheduled for intermittent lane restrictions in various locations throughout the Town of Silver Lake. INDOT will be preparing the roadway for the upcoming asphalt resurface project.
Also during this time, sidewalk and ramp improvements will be made to meet the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards.
Motorists should be aware of flaggers during this time in the work zone. Drivers should be prepared to slow down and stop. All work is weather permitting.
The Stockdale Mill Foundation is pleased to announce that the mill will open for the season on May 3. All four floors of the mill, intact with original machines, are available for tours.
Standing firmly on the banks of the Eel River near Roann, the Stockdale Mill welcomes visitors to experience a bygone era and witness the collective efforts of a community to restore a noted landmark.
The Stockdale Mill was built at the best power source on the Eel River. Norma (Deck) Krom was quoted in 1992 during the dedication of a historical market as saying:
“Standing at the mill today, one cannot but feel wonder and admiration for the courage, foresight and judgment of the pioneers. What insight told them where to build a dam?”
This historic mill is all that remains of the neighboring town of Stockdale. In 1839, Thomas Goudy platted the town of Stockdale, the first town in Paw Paw Township.
by Emily Armentrout
When everything that could go wrong does go wrong, some people in this world would shut down, give up and let the bad things take their will to live, but the Parson family are not just some people.
Audrey Hepburn once said, “I love people who make me laugh. I honestly think it's the thing I like most, to laugh. It cures a multitude of ills. It's probably the most important thing in a person.”
This seems to be the mantra the Parson family lives by, loving to laugh and loving each other.
Gary, father and husband, drives truck for a living, while his wife, Sally, works at The Nail Emporium, located at their home in LaFontaine, and their son, Evan, is a senior at Southwood Jr./Sr. High School. From the outside the Parsons look like any other family, but it’s the insides that have caused this family struggle for the past 15 years.
Gary was diagnosed with polycystic kidney disease in 2001. Polycystic kidney disease causes cysts to grow continually inside the kidneys causing five-ounce kidneys to grow, in Gary’s case, to 12 pounds apiece. After being diagnosed in 2001, Gary went into end-stage renal failure a year later, and was put on dialysis.
by Eric Stearley
For those who have been involved in 4-H or veterans’ affairs in Wabash County, Duane Truss is a household name. After receiving the Sagamore of the Wabash award on April 9, Truss will now be known by people across the state.
Family and friends surprised Truss at the courthouse Wednesday, but when he walked through the door of the Commissioners Meeting Room and saw representatives from the local VFW and Wabash County 4-H standing with Senator Jim Banks, he had an idea why he had been asked to come.
“You have a lot of friends,” Senator Banks said to Truss as he began to present the award. “What I like to emphasize…in a ceremony like this is to talk about how rare this award truly is, given to only a handful of great Hoosiers across our state.”
Sagamore of the Wabash is an honorary award given by the governor to Hoosiers who have demonstrated great leadership, service and dedication to making the Indiana a better place to live. It is the second-highest honor the governor can award a citizen. Its name comes from an Algonquian word used by Native Americans tribes to describe an individual within the tribe that the chief looks to for guidance. Senator Banks read from Truss’ award, where it states that he is “distinguished by his humanity in living, his loyalty in friendship, his wisdom in counsel, and his inspiration in leadership.”
The Easter Bunny makes his annual visit to Manchester University on Saturday, April 26 and all area children are invited. In addition to hugs from the big bunny, children age 1 to 12 will find lots to do on the North Manchester campus, beginning at 11:30 a.m.
Student residents of East Hall host the free event. On the schedule is: face painting, chalk drawing, sack races and other field games, photos with the Easter Bunny and the Egg Hunt. To give the wee ones equal opportunity, the activities are split into age categories: 1-6 and 7-12.
The Egg Hunt is between East and Garver residence halls, off East Street. A parent or guardian must accompany all children at all times and all children must register beforehand. The Egg Hunt begins at noon.
East Hall is home to about 200 MU students.
“One of the best parts about living in East Hall is that we get to host great events for the younger children of the community,” said Letha L. Parrott, East Hall director.
East Hall residents will fill 1,000 plastic eggs with treats for the Egg Hunt, she added.
“We want to form and uphold traditions that will allow the children to be comfortable on the Manchester University campus and have great memories here,” Parrott said. “Our hope is that one day they will become MU Spartans who also care about providing good, clean, fun to their communities.”
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