LFW Weekly Fun File
Dec15

LFW Weekly Fun File

It’s Holiday Season! Looking for fun things to do in Fort Wayne? Look no further! LFW compiles a list of fun ongoings and events that we’re excited about 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 go ahead and submit your event to our calendar! Click on the event for more information about times, locations, cost, etc. 1. 4th Annual Ugly Sweater Run Thursday, December 15 from 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. It’s a 3 mile run downtown. Take a look at the lights, wear your ugliest sweater, then stop by JKs when the run is done for an ugly sweater contest and drinks.   2. 1816 Historic Film Friday, December 16 from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday, December 18, at 3 p.m. It’s the official Indiana Bicentennial film! Check it out this weekend at the History Center.   3. When Harry Met Star Wars Christmas Event! Saturday, December 17, all day Celebrating the awesomeness that is a new Harry Potter movie and a new Star Wars film all in one year.   4. FWDC Annual Holiday Show: Ice Kings, Snow Queens & Cold Winter Tales Saturday, December 17 at 7 p.m. It’s a beautiful winter performance that you don’t want to miss!   5. Kick ChristmASS Weekend – Die Hard & Batman Returns Saturday and Sunday, December 16 and 17 The other day I asked someone what his favorite Christmas movie is. He said Die Hard. So, this event makes perfect sense.   6. The Spirit of Christmas Saturday and Sunday, December 17 and 18, at 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. Heartland Sings’ beautiful Christmas concert. Don’t miss it, it’s wonderful.   7. Santa’s Sleigh is on its Way to Indiana Saturday, December 17 at 11 a.m. Story time and activities surrounding this fun book! Your kiddos will love it.   8. Fort Wayne’s Chase the Chill Scarf Bombing Sunday, December 18 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. This is the 3rd year we’ve bombed the city with scarves. Hang your winter gear up around town with tags saying anyone can claim them. Scarves will be taken down before dark and donated to local shelters and street teams.   9. Fort Wayne Youtheatre presents Best Christmas Pageant Ever Friday, December 16 at 7 p.m. Saturday, December 17 at 2 p.m. Sunday, December 18 at 2 p.m. This is one of my favorite Christmas stories, and it will be so fun to see the Youtheatre put it on...

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A Grand Landmark Returns to Glory
Mar30

A Grand Landmark Returns to Glory

My love for old buildings started at a young age. One of my earliest real estate crushes was the Indiana Hotel building, attached to the Embassy Theatre downtown. Looking up into the rows of windows framed by limestone façade, I imaged the grand guests who once stayed inside. I envisioned glamorous ladies dressing for dinner – styling their hair, adorning themselves with sparkling baubles, and gracefully sashaying down the halls. I imagined what it would’ve been like to sleep there in the hotel’s heyday. How did they heat the rooms? Did they share bathrooms? Did any famous people spend the night? A few years later, I got to know the building even better. I had the privilege to perform on the Embassy stage dozens of times. Back then, the backstage hallways were painted with murals and covered with autographs and fading head shots from past performers. The cramped dressing rooms had faded carpet and peeling paint. But backstage passageways offered plenty to explore and imagine. As we waited for our turn at recitals and dress rehearsals, we’d play hide-and-seek down the halls and tell ghost stories in the Embassy’s ornate, expansive bathrooms. My attachment for the Embassy and Indiana Hotel building was partially inherited. In the ’70s, my dad and uncle donated their time and professional skills to return the Embassy to its former glory. My dad would point out the decorative molding and ceiling designs. “You see that,” he’d say. “That’s gold leaf paint. It has tiny bits of actual gold in it.” (My dad has always known EXACTLY what kind of information would thrill me.) As a kid, it was hard for me to imagine that such a captivating architectural treasure – the Indiana Hotel – sat empty, collecting cobwebs instead of hosting guests. I told myself that someday, I wanted to buy it and turn it back into a posh hotel, a quirky shopping mall or a complex of studio apartments. Back then I didn’t grasp the kind of expenses such an endeavor would entail. But happily, I don’t have to worry about what will become of the historic structure. Today, the Embassy will unveil recently completed renovations to the Indiana Hotel. The two-year renovation project included the addition of a rooftop patio, a two-story ballroom, rehearsal and classroom spaces and new administrative offices. The $10-million project included the removal of a wall separating the Embassy Theatre and Indiana Hotel spaces, and made way for a mezzanine lounge, theater bars, concessions, new dressing rooms, an updated box office and a heritage center. The project started with the construction of the downtown Courtyard Marriot, says Barb Richards, Marketing Director at the Embassy Theatre. “[They] wanted to build in downtown Fort Wayne...

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This Summer, Help Your Children Develop Their Historical Memory
Jul15

This Summer, Help Your Children Develop Their Historical Memory

Fort Wayne, IN (Grassroots Newswire) July 7, 2014 – With Memorial Day having just passed, and July 4th just around the corner, many children can easily mistake these national holidays (and others) as just another reason to celebrate. Synonymous with backyard barbecues, parades, and bright, colorful firework displays, the Fourth of July, also known as Independence Day, is anything but your average holiday. While celebrating is wonderful, we need to ensure that children understand the history that is behind the festivities that occur on our national holidays. Hajira Khan, Franchise Owner of Kiddie Academy of Fort Wayne, an educationally focused child care provider in Fort Wayne, believes that it’s important for children to learn about history – on a national, local and family level – and to help children understand that each of them is, in fact, a living part of that history. “Taking this view of history makes that common childhood question – ‘Where did I come from?’- take on a whole new meaning,” says Khan. “When children learn that they are not only members of a family, but also of a community and a state and a nation and the world, it expands the horizon of their imaginations and helps them see their own experiences, beliefs and ambitions in context.” As summer vacations begin, Khan offers the following suggestions for family activities that will help children form connections to local, family, national, and even global history – as they develop their “historical memory”. Visit your local historical society to learn about your hometown. Who are the key figures that played a role in your town’s founding? What contributions did your town or state make to the history of the United States? Explore one of the 400 parks administered by the U.S. National Park Service. Many have historic significance to the founding and development of our nation. You can search by state at the National Parks website: http://www.nps.gov/index.htm. Park rangers give regular informational tours at most sites. Trace your family’s history. Build a family tree – there are multiple websites and apps to make creating a family tree easier than ever before. Local historical societies also contain many genealogy resources. Study maps, both historical and the Google Earth varieties. How did the state borderlines get drawn? Who decided the shape of each state? Visit The Library of Congress website’s Places in History section to review a wide variety of maps that document historic sites: http://www.loc.gov/rr/geogmap/placesinhistory/. Discover how your state got its name. Mental Floss has a resource here: http://mentalfloss.com/article/31100/how-all-50-states-got-their-names “History should be more than just a subject that our children study in school,” says Khan. “Each city, town...

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Honor Veterans in Fort Wayne this Memorial Day
May23

Honor Veterans in Fort Wayne this Memorial Day

To most of us, Memorial Day is a wonderful 3-day weekend and the official start of summer. But it means much more than that. It is a day to honor those who have served our country and to remember those who have died fighting for our freedom. The Summit City offers several events to celebrate our veterans and learn more about the history of our city. Click the links below for more information!  The 122nd Fighter Wing in Fort Wayne will host a 21 Guns Memorial Day Salute from 8am – 10am on May 24. The Old Fort in Fort Wayne will be hosting a Memorial Day Observance from 1pm – 5pm on May 25. Reenactment soldiers from the early settlers to WWII will be present and veterans will be sharing their war stories. Memorial Day Parade in Fort Wayne will be held at 11am on May 26. The parade will start at State Blvd and Parnell and end at the Coliseum. The National Military History Center in Auburn will be hosting a Memorial Day pancake and sausage breakfast from 8 – 10:30 am, on Monday May...

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Sin in the Summit City
Feb20

Sin in the Summit City

Based on a Presentation led by:  Karen Richards, Allen County Prosecutor The history of Fort Wayne is quite dicey, starting in 1830 with the Wabash & Erie Canal construction which brought in two types of people.  Because of the commercial opportunities, men, women and families with more of a Puritan view came from northern England.  The second group consisted of the German and Irish single men who were more of a drinking crowd. During the Victorian era, the view of sex by the Puritans was that sex was only for those who were married and was for procreation only.  Any woman having sex outside of marriage was considered a prostitute.  Prostitutes in Fort Wayne were native born Irish/German women.  They were mostly between the ages of 17 and 21, but some were as young as 14.  Some prostitutes had children and were married but their husbands had left them and left them with nothing.  These women would be in the prostitution business for approximately 5-6 years.  Many had died after those years and others would move away who had assumed different identities while prostituting.  Some women became prostitutes because they left an abusive relationship and had no other occupational opportunity or women were left by their lovers and considered ‘fallen’ women.  Others were enticed as a new immigrant, feeble minded, had no safety net or lived in poverty. Many businesses were built around the canal:  Hotels, Brothels, Saloons, Dance Halls and the Parlor House.  The Parlor House would have a legitimate business on the first floor while the second floor housed prostitution.  Many arrests were made on the 2nd floor.  These businesses were on E. Wayne St, E. Columbia St. Broadway & Main St area.  The Chicago Times (1871) labeled Fort Wayne ‘The most lawless town in Indiana’.  The population was growing, more crimes were committed, more whiskey and beer shops had opened (180) and prostitution was rampant. Fort Wayne residents had decided a court was needed.  They came up with the mayor’s court where adultery was considered illegal and you were either fined or the case was dismissed if you left town.  Franklin P. Randall came to the rescue as mayor who created a police force to deal with the gambling, prostitution and drinking from twilight to daybreak.  The first Fort Wayne police station was on Court Street.  Iron cages were built for men and women were on the second floor.  The ‘Randall’ building is located on Lafayette and Berry where the now GTE building stands. In early 1900s, the railroad came to town which fueled growth.  The Bass Foundry came to town and locations of prostitution grew. ...

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