Living Communities

Coming to Fright Night – DIA Fort Wayne – A Celebration of Life!

Posted by on October 20, 2017 | 0 comments

Coming to Fright Night – DIA Fort Wayne – A Celebration of Life!

From DIA Fort Wayne To conclude the celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month and to celebrate the upcoming Day of the Dead/Dia de Los Muertos holiday, Parkview Health, University of Saint Francis and Sweetwater are excited introduce DIA Fort Wayne- A Celebration of Life! This event will be a part of this year’s Fright Night event on October 21, 2017, hosted by the Downtown Improvement District. The event will take place at the USF Robert Goldstine Performing Arts Center in downtown Fort Wayne. Festivities Include: Live Music Local Taco Vendors Beer Garden Face Painting Games Lucha libre wrestlers and altars with ofrendas (elaborate offerings dedicated to the spirit of the departed) Contests including “Best Calaca/Skeleton” Costume Additional sponsors include University of Saint Francis Culturas Unidas, Sud-n-Impact Gym, Fort Wayne’s CW, Sol Kitchen, Salsa Grille, Monterrico To Go, Flora & Lily’s, Mitchell’s Sports Bar & Grill, 5 Star and Cruz Studios. Admission is free from 1:00 pm to 10:00 pm on October 21, 2017. At 5:30 p.m., calacas will meet up with participants of Fright Nights 10th Annual Zombie Walk. For more information, please visit...

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Live Storytelling Thrives at The Trap Door

Posted by on October 16, 2017 | 0 comments

Live Storytelling Thrives at The Trap Door

LoadingCenter mapTrafficBicyclingTransitGoogle MapsGet Directions When you hear someone tell a live story, you form a personal connection with them. Fort Wayne’s Ben Larson says, “you get an understanding of people that is rare these days, with everybody being so attached to social media. You just get a small glimpse of a person [on social media] and we’re so quick to make snap judgments without getting to know someone, where they’ve been, what’s in their mind. Storytelling helps alleviate that; people are now craving that instead of micro-doses of humanity. We’re 3D people with our own lives, our own back-stories.” Background Larson was an English major in college, and he’s always loved a good story. He became interested in storytelling as theatre after discovering podcasts like “The Moth,” “Risk” and “Snap Judgment.” In 2015, he decided to bring the idea to life in Fort Wayne with The Trap Door. It began with a one-off show, but then the concept was shelved for about a year. In the late summer/early fall of 2016, Larson decided to revive the project. When John Cheesebrew and Becca Bell came on board, the project really began to take off. These three have known each other for years. Larson had worked creatively with Cheesebrew before – they used to play together in the black metal band Fodalla. “John is a good sounding board, he’s brutally honest and he has great ideas,” said Larson. “Becca has been a writer forever and she has a stronger organizational aspect than John or [me]. Also, I knew she could contribute to the creative side. So we all had different sets of skills and they combined well.” Format The Trap Door does two different types of shows, alternating each month. There are story slams and showcase shows. The story slam is a contest. Anyone interested in sharing a story will put their name into a hat. Names are draw and each storyteller tells a five to ten minute story. There are two winners: one chosen by the audience, one by the judges. “We’ve been fortunate in that we haven’t had to worry about filling up time. Sometimes ten minutes before the show we’ll only have two names, but by the time the show starts we’ve gotten 15,” said Larson. In contrast, showcase shows are planned out ahead of time. The team will accept pitches in the form of a 100-word synopsis, and then they’ll choose the storytellers. They occasionally reach out to specific people, but that varies depending on the month. Storytellers will prep their stories ahead of time, working with Larson, Bell and Cheesebrew before the show. Then they decide on an order for the show that flows, makes sense, and is engaging. Larson compared the process to making a mix tape. “You don’t want to start off a show with some sort of emotional bummer of a story because then the audience will be sad. You want to save that kind of thing for last or right before intermission. The best first stories are usually funnier,” said Larson. “You don’t want to start with a trigger. It’s better to use something more entertaining. For example, we had one story about little girl’s grandma intentionally putting her in harms way because they were at a convention with MacGyver and she...

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Living Large in Little Homes

Posted by on October 11, 2017 | 0 comments

Living Large in Little Homes

If you’ve been wanting to live bigger while taking up less space, you may want to hop aboard the small house movement. This weekend provides the perfect opportunity, as local nonprofit organization Brightpoint will hold it’s inaugural Tiny House Showcase. Join them October 13-15 at Parkview Field to get a first-hand look at a variety of tiny homes. Also, take time to explore multiple local and national vendors that can help all of your downsizing dreams come true. Brightpoint’s mission is to help people remove the causes and conditions of poverty. By hosting this event, they hope to bring awareness to what they do with quality, affordable housing. Jennie Renner, Development Manager, says they are also looking to start the conversation of a possible tiny house community in the area, something that isn’t possible now due to residential building restrictions. “If that’s what we wanted to do, we would have to make some changes, so we wanted to see how people felt about that. So far, it’s been positive,” said Renner. Four tiny homes are currently scheduled to be on display, along with vendors who weren’t able to bring a home, but will have plenty of information on hand. What else can people expect to see? “Probably the most unusual one is Nature’s Earthly Way. They do composting toilets,” said Renner. Other participants include Fort Wayne Outfitters, North Coast Organics, and Clean Craft Soapworks, just to name a few. Come and get a sneak peak Friday night at the VIP Preview Party, where you can view some tiny homes, and enjoy hors d’oeuvres and cocktails. Also, keynote speaker Michael Anthony will be talking about Lomax, a tiny house community in his home of San Pierre, Indiana. If you attend Friday, you will also get a ticket to return later in the weekend. VIP Preview Party:  $40 Friday, October 13, 2017 – 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM General Admission:  $12 Saturday, October 14, 2017 – 11:00 AM to 6:00 PM Sunday, October 15, 2017 – 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM Children 12 and under get in free with an adult. Tickets and more information can be...

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A Look Back at Honor Flight Northeast Indiana

Posted by on October 4, 2017 | Comments Off on A Look Back at Honor Flight Northeast Indiana

A Look Back at Honor Flight Northeast Indiana

Walking through the throngs of people last Wednesday night, one could almost be forgiven for mistaking the modest Fort Wayne airport for the sight of an enthusiastic Fourth of July or Memorial Day parade. Hundreds of people – young, old, and everywhere in between – filled the normally quiet and quaint airport terminal with American flags, banners, signs, flowers, and more. Although it was late on a Wednesday night, those in attendance were in a jovial mood as they smiled, hugged, laughed, and prepared to welcome home the men and women who were returning from our nation’s capital. Confused travelers who were arriving to the airport after their normal, everyday flights would look around and wonder what on Earth they were witnessing. The trip was organized by Honor Flight Northeast Indiana, a chapter of the non-profit Honor Flight Network, which provides aging veterans with the honor and closure that many might not have received, even after many years had passed since their service. In 2016 alone, the network flew over 20,000 veterans to Washington DC. By the end of 2017 that number is expected to surpass 200,000 since its inception in 2005. On Wednesday night, many veterans walked off the planes with a sense of pride and patriotism that one could assume they hadn’t felt in a long time. Watching the ever-dwindling number of proud World War II and Korean War veterans moving through the terminal, many in wheelchairs, I was taken aback by a deep sense of melancholy. Frail old men and women who wanted one more chance to pay respect to those they served with. Travelling to the hallowed ground in our nation’s Capital alongside their “guardian,” a family member or volunteer who accompanied them on their journey. One veteran I spoke with, a Marine who fought in Vietnam in 1966-67, said that he’d heard of the Honor Flight organization before, but nothing could’ve prepared him for what he encountered at the airport. “This is unreal,” he told me. “The public was so against the war when I got back that I never thought I’d see anything like this.” It became apparent throughout the course of our conversation that the emotion of the moment was getting to him. It was okay, I told him. It’s getting to me as well. My generation of veterans, although we don’t like to admit it, is spoiled. We’ve enjoyed general public support both during our time in the military and as veterans, and while that same public’s support for the wars and policies that dictate troop movements and actions will ebb and flow, America’s support for its military has remained consistent throughout my generation. I’ve been in parades, I’ve been recognized, applauded, and thanked – as have many of my fellow veterans. We were fortunate in that regard. So to see men who fought in a war as unpopular as Vietnam brought to tears by a long-overdue “Welcome Home” celebration created a very powerful, very emotional moment for those in attendance. As writer and Vietnam veteran Alan Cutter once wrote, “I flew back to my family in Maine; they were glad to see me, but not even they said ‘thank you’ or ‘welcome home’. Even if they had, I wouldn’t have known how to respond.” Fort Wayne responded for these men....

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LFW Weekly Fun File

Posted by on September 28, 2017 | Comments Off on LFW Weekly Fun File

LFW Weekly Fun File

Looking for fun events in Fort Wayne? Look no further! Living Fort Wayne compiles a list of events and activities happening every week! This is by no means an exhaustive list, and if you don’t quite see what you’re looking for, check out our events calendar. If you’d like to see your event featured in the Weekly Fun File, or added to our events calendar, let us know! Email us at info@livingfortwayne.com or you can submit your event to our calendar! Click on the event for more information about times, locations, cost, etc. Food Truck Thursday – Season FINALE! Thursday, September 28 at 5 p.m. It’s the last food truck Thursday of the season! The weather should be great, don’t miss it! Heartland Sings: Karaoke Classics Live Friday, September 29 at 7:30 p.m. Sing along to your favorite karaoke this Friday! Lucky Duck Children’s Consignment Sale Friday, September 29 to Sunday, October 1 It’s one of the biggest consignment sales in the area, check it out! Fort4Fitness Fall Festival: 4M, 10K, Half Marathon and Marathon Saturday, September 30 at 7 a.m. Fort4Fitness is finally here! Head out and finish that race! Suicide Prevention QPR Training at St. Jude Sunday, October 1 at 7 p.m. After this training in prevention, you’ll be prepared to assist someone who is contemplating suicide. Oktoberfest Dinner Monday, October 2 at 6:30 p.m. A four-course dinner and plenty of giveaways, it should be a fun night! Tiny Musicians Tuesday, October 3 and Wednesday, October 4 Music is a great way to help your kiddos grow. Help them experience the emotional, physical, and mental benefits of playing with music this week! Bridging the Gap of Homelessness presented by the CMSA of FW Wednesday, October 4 at 8:20 p.m. Learn how you can make a difference in our community and how we can all work together to tackle homelessness. Drawn Together Wednesday, October 4 at 7 a.m. Grab your imagination and join together for a fun time of creating! Remember, this isn’t all Fort Wayne has to offer. Get out and enjoy this weekend! We can’t wait to see you around our...

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Tesla Supercharger Station Comes to Town

Posted by on August 14, 2017 | Comments Off on Tesla Supercharger Station Comes to Town

Tesla Supercharger Station Comes to Town

Nothing like this ever happens in Fort Wayne. Nope. Nothing. Ever. Until yesterday . . . That’s when I noticed them. What? Oh, just the ten Tesla charging stations that are being built in the Lima Road Meijer parking lot. You know . . . history! This is epic. This is sliced bread. This is Elvis coming to the Coliseum. And here we are, right smack in the middle of it. Now, if you stroll over to the site on Lima Road, the crew out there can’t talk to you about it. Tesla even said they won’t comment on the stations until they are up and running for customers. Tesla builds all-electric vehicles in order to stop our reliance on fossil fuels. They have also launched solar roof tiles as well as a solar panel-charged Powerwall battery to sustainably power your home or to be used as a backup in case of a storm (or zombie apocalypse). This year they’ve launched their third production vehicle, the Tesla 3, which starts at $35,000. It is a more affordable alternative to their higher-end vehicles, the Tesla X and Tesla S. By the end of 2017, Tesla will have more than doubled their charging stations, making it easier to travel. In Indiana, we have 4 open Supercharger Stations with 3 more coming this year, including the Fort Wayne location. These charging stations can be found with Trip Planner in the Tesla app. They’ve been strategically placed near wi-fi locations, coffeeshops or restaurants so you can have your car charging and your cake, too! Then, the app will notify you when your car is fully charged and ready to roll. There are three known locations of Destination Chargers already in the Fort. These chargers are slower than the Superchargers, so don’t show up with an empty tank unless you’re going to stay for a few hours. They can be found at BakerStreet on Clinton, Parkview North in their above and below ground parking lots, and Sweetwater Sound off of US 30. So . . . while I have little information and I wait to see the press release come through, I want to know what you think about this. Do you think this is historical? Are you going to buy a Tesla? Are you going to camp out and wait for the first Tesla to charge? (No, yeah . . . uhhh, me, either. . .) Let us know your...

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New to Fort Wayne: Diving Into the Three Rivers

Posted by on August 2, 2017 | Comments Off on New to Fort Wayne: Diving Into the Three Rivers

New to Fort Wayne: Diving Into the Three Rivers

A year ago, if you would’ve told me I’d leave my job, and move to Indiana to live with a girlfriend and two kids, I would’ve easily called you crazy. I’ve always been an introverted loner, and living in Kentucky, who wanted to move back to the East Coast, or even go west. Fast forward to today, and here I am… writing a blog… about how I left my job to move to Indiana to live with a girlfriend and two kids. As I dive into this new adventure, I figure I may as well document my experiences. Well, figuring out how the whole family thing works might be a little difficult to write about, but I can at least share some of our adventures in my new home. Along the way, maybe I can even turn others on to some interesting, unique, and fun things to do in Summit City. Moving to a different place can be intimidating but exciting at the same time. Everything is new. Where do you start? I usually just think of things I like, and go find them. I like food (who doesn’t?). This is obviously not a hard one to find, and you’re probably not going to run out of choices any time soon. From breakfast at Cindy’s Diner, to dessert at Eddie Merlot’s, I’ve gotten a good sample of Fort Wayne cuisine. Actually, the more I think of examples–sushi at Pho-Shi, Powers burgers, The Golden –I’ve sampled a lot more than I initially thought. Oh, and the food trucks could easily have their own blog. I like beer. As one of those beer snobs, local breweries are a must. Luckily, I’ve had no problems finding some good ones. Mad Anthony was the first local beer I checked out. Summit City Brewerks has been the most visited. Trubble’s great, as is Junk Ditch and the rest. Ok, really, it’s not like there are any bad ones, or ones I haven’t tried. Maybe I’m not as snobbish as I thought. I like music. Seeing live shows has been my go-to activity for about the last 20 years. While I have yet to see any big-name acts at the Coliseum, I’ve caught a handful of local and national talent at smaller venues. No bands have disappointed me at the Brass Rail. I’ve found some talented musicians at aforementioned breweries and even enjoyed some metal from School of Rock at Friday Nites Live. Along with these three pleasures, I can’t count the number of festivals I’ve been to or heard about. Toss in the numerous parks, businesses, and organizations, and I have no doubt that I can keep finding plenty of adventures here in Fort...

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#IGersFortWayne: Creating a Community for Imagemakers

Posted by on July 31, 2017 | Comments Off on #IGersFortWayne: Creating a Community for Imagemakers

#IGersFortWayne: Creating a Community for Imagemakers

A picture is worth a thousand words. Instagram makes it so easy now to see beautiful images taken by photographers of all skill levels. Because of geotags and hashtags, you can see pictures taken around your area. If you’ve seen the hashtag #IGersFortWayne, you can view beautiful images taken by image makers in Fort Wayne. Good morning Fort Wayne! If you didn’t see the sunset last night, check out this incredible photo by @the_kirbster001 of the Fort Wayne skyline last night! Keep using the #IGersFortWayne tag and enjoy the weekend! // @scornfulcow A post shared by IGersFortWayne (@igersfortwayne) on Feb 11, 2017 at 7:23am PST   IGersFortWayne’s mission is to curate a creative community of image makers in the Fort Wayne area. Through team members Megan Hevel, Sean O’Leary, Danielle Doepke, and Mollie Shutt, the group is paving the way to a strong community with a big following, image makers and non-image makers alike. Megan said, “It’s an Instagram page that is meant to facilitate community for image makers in the Fort Wayne area. We are seeking to bring like-minded people together, to make connections, inspire one another, and experience Fort Wayne in new ways through photography.”     With the redevelopment of Fort Wayne and the ease of access to the images of Instagram, IGersFortWayne is reframing the way people view the city. Everyone who shares an image shares a different perspective, changing how others see Fort Wayne. “It promotes growth, builds a stronger creative community, and seeks to capture the best parts of our ever-evolving city. As we support and encourage one another, we become better and are able to contribute more to the community we love,” said Megan.     But you don’t have to consider yourself a professional or even a photographer to submit an image to IGersFortWayne. By using the term imagemaker, the community is welcoming to all kinds of imagery creators, from those pursuing a career in photography to those who shoot photos on their phone. IGersFortWayne is an inclusive community, and the more creativity contributed, the more inspiration ignites.   I mean, how could anyone say no to a classic like @fwconeyisland?! 🌭@olivia_eve_ captured this Fort Wayne staple so beautifully, it’s no wonder it was chosen to be featured in a Food Network article! That depth of field, that color and composition 👌🏽 #igersfortwayne + @meganhevel A post shared by IGersFortWayne (@igersfortwayne) on May 16, 2017 at 3:47pm PDT     Each of the team members contributes to the group by posting features on the IGersFortWayne Instagram feed during the week. As a team, they collaborate to come up with new ideas for image cultivation and organizing instameets. An instameet is an event where image makers are invited to gather to explore the Fort Wayne area and photograph together.     Megan said, “Through these meet-ups, we are able to encourage and push one another creatively, develop friendships, and grow the creative community. An instameet can be as simple as walking around downtown looking for new, interesting ways to capture the city. It can also be more specific and unique, like the instameet we did at The Clyde Theater. We have partnered with other organizations, like Visit Fort Wayne, the Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo, Middle Waves, and the Arts United Center to...

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12 Three Rivers Festival Events You Won’t Want To Miss

Posted by on July 7, 2017 | Comments Off on 12 Three Rivers Festival Events You Won’t Want To Miss

12 Three Rivers Festival Events You Won’t Want To Miss

The Three Rivers Festival is back for their 49th year! You may have received your booklet and are probably overwhelmed by just how many events are taking place in just one week of the festival. Fort Wayne is so spoiled by the amount of fun we get to have during this festival that we’ve decided to make a list of events that are worth visiting. There’s something for everyone this year, including new events. Check out Living Fort Wayne’s picks for the Three Rivers Festival events you won’t want to miss!   Downtown Midway (July 7–15 at 11 a.m.–11 p.m.) The Three Rivers Festival provides multiple rides for the Fort Wayne community to enjoy every year! There will also be classic carnival games, face painting, kids’ rides and so much more. You can get your wristbands for the rides in advance here.   The Emporium (July 7 at 4 p.m.–10 p.m., July 8–9 at 11 p.m.–1o p.m., July 10–12 at 5 p.m.–9 p.m., July 13–15 at 11 a.m.–10 p.m.) Located in Headwaters Park West, this area will be home to local artists to sell their merchandise and services. unique gifts, handcrafted jewelry, soaps, and clothes will be available to buy. The Emporium is featuring local food favorites this year including Tucanos, Audrey’s Cake Rolls and the Cupbearer Cafe. If you love shopping and supporting local, this is the place to be!   Junk Food Alley (July 7–15) Forget your diet plans this week and gorge yourself on the loads of food options to choose from at Junk Food Alley! Elephant ears, chicken-on-a-stick, fried watermelon, and fresh lemon shake-ups are just among the hundreds of things to try here. Don’t forget about $2 Tuesdays at Junk Food Alley! Also, be sure to get your lunch time junk food fix by hopping aboard the FREE Lunch Time Trolley Monday to Friday. Schedule and stops listed here.   Three Rivers Parade (July 8 at 10 a.m.) Marching bands, floats, free stuff, oh my! The annual Three Rivers Parade is a staple, and this year’s theme is “Superheroes!” Parade route can be found here. You can also catch it live on Channel 21 if crowds just aren’t your thing.   Chalk Walk (July 8 and 9) Located on Main Street in front of the Fort Wayne Museum of Art, this event features area artists turning a square of concrete into a piece of art. Watch the artistic process at work as people create masterpieces Downtown.   Art in the Park (July 8 at 11 a.m.–7 p.m., July 9, 11 a.m.–5 p.m.) This juried event will host over 100 different artists from across the country and Indiana! Art in the Park will take place in Freimann Square on Main Street, with something for everyone’s artistic taste.   Fort Wayne HeART of the City at the Three Rivers Festival (July 8 at 11 a.m.–5 p.m., July 9 at 10 a.m.–5 p.m.)   As a new addition to the Festival, Fort Wayne HeART of the City will also be hosting their first event for Fort Wayne artists to showcase their work. Come see what artistic talent exists in our own backyard and support local art!   BedRace (July 12, 6:30 p.m.–8:30 p.m.) Every year, you can see Main Street lined up with a huge audience for the Three Rivers Festival...

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Entrepreneurship Spotlight — Mike Rowland

Posted by on April 4, 2017 | Comments Off on Entrepreneurship Spotlight — Mike Rowland

Entrepreneurship Spotlight — Mike Rowland

We’re back with another Entrepreneurship Spotlight, this time featuring Mike Rowland of Animal Training and Development. Mike has been training dogs in Fort Wayne for over 25 years, and it’s been so fun getting some insight into being an entrepreneur from someone who’s been doing it for years! He definitely has some great perspective for all you future Fort Wayne business owners. His business has evolved from focusing on puppy classes and simple behavior issues, to training service dogs for veterans with PTSD (although he still does puppy classes and potty training). He also now holds seminars and trains future dog trainers. Mike helped my golden retriever and I accomplish our goal of being a therapy team — my dog passed his therapy certification with flying colors! Animal Training and Development is a wonderful asset in our community, check it out! What made you decide to open a business in Fort Wayne/Northeast Indiana? I recognized the need for professional dog trainers in the Fort Wayne area.  There were only a few options back in 1986 and many people were turning their dogs into Animal Care & Control due to relatively common and simple behavior issues like housetraining, jumping, barking, digging and chewing.  I took part in a “Animal Hotline” offered through Animal Care & Control once a week and fielded over twenty calls each day from people that were desperate for help.  It was very rewarding for me as an entrepreneur to take those calls and meet the needs of the callers.  Even though I was doing it for free, I knew the word would spread that people were getting help and that if it worked for them, more people would call.  Within a few weeks, there were more calls to the hotline than I could manage and my business phone began to ring.  It’s been ringing ever since. What resource in the community has helped you thrive in the community? Animal Care & Control, Allen County SPCA, local dog rescue groups and local Veterinarians.  All of these safe havens for animals were great places for me to grow as a professional and give back to those that give so much. What is the biggest challenge you have worked to overcome in starting your business? It takes time and effort to be successful and even more so if you have no money for marketing.  I started with zero investment capital and only passion and dogged determination kept me going through the lean years.  Looking back, those were some of the best days.  Living simply and enjoying what I was doing, knowing I could help people train and enjoy their dogs; it didn’t seem like work at all.  The sense of accomplishment and freedom to do things the way I wanted were reward enough to keep me going. What person has helped you the most in your journey? Every client that found help and told one or two friends.  To this day “word of mouth” proves to be good advertising. What is some advice you would have for new entrepreneurs? First, determine what it is you are passionate about, then figure out how to make a living doing it.  If you can make a living doing what you are passionate about, you will never have to work a day in your...

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