Summer Outdoor Adventures of Northeast Indiana
Jun15

Summer Outdoor Adventures of Northeast Indiana

Northeast Indiana has no shortage of outdoor activities. From Fort Wayne’s three rivers, 86 parks and hundreds of miles of bike paths, there’s plenty to explore. Keep reading for our favorite outdoor adventures in and around Fort Wayne. Visit a State Park Northeast Indiana’s State Parks are the best places to go for hiking, observing wildlife, camping and more! Pokagen Located near Angola, Pokagen is one of Indiana’s original state parks.  With activities for every season, the park is a hot spot all year long. This summer head to Pokagen to enjoy its scenic hiking trails, boat rentals, fishing, horse riding and beautiful sunset views. Chain O’ Lakes Nine connecting lakes make up this state park. With 10 miles of hiking trails, plentiful beaches, the one-room schoolhouse nature center and cabins for rustic overnights, there’s plenty to keep the whole family busy all weekend. Ouabache Easier said than it looks, this park’s name is the French spelling of a Native American word and is simply pronounced “Wabash.” Head here to enjoy the park’s interpretative naturalist services, hiking trails, swimming beaches and paved bike paths. Other Parks While not designated as state parks, there are plenty of natural areas nearby to get your outdoor fix.  Check out Allen County Parks with more info about Fox Island and Matea Park  which offer great activities for the kiddos. Salomon Farm Park is an historic working farm and park for everyone. Roush Lake Fish and Wildlife Area is designated for hunting and fishing opportunities. Head to the Water There are numerous lakes and rivers surrounding Fort Wayne offering cottage rentals for a weekend (or longer) getaway. There’s no better place to de-stress than near the water. Lake Life Lake Wawasee is Indiana’s largest natural lake, with rumors that Oprah has purchased lakeside property there, and Al Capone used to be a regular visitor. Salamonie Lake has tons of activities to enjoy besides swimming and boating including biking and bridle trails, playgrounds, sports courts and waterskiing. Other nearby favorites are Crooked Lake, Lake James and Tri-Lakes. Looking for a cottage or lake house rental? Try a quick search on AirBNB! River Fun Fort Wayne is home to the St. Mary’s and St. Joseph Rivers which form the Maumee River. Fort Wayne Outfitters offers kayaking and canoe rentalswhile River City Ventures offers relaxing, scenic tours. If you’re willing to travel a bit out of the city, head just an hour to Howe, Indiana for some river adventuring. Mongo River Run and The Trading Post offer boat rentals from four to 13 mile runs down the quiet and scenic river. Hit the Trails Fort Wayne has hundreds of miles of paved bike paths...

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How to Celebrate National Wine Day
May23

How to Celebrate National Wine Day

Merlot? Wine not. We all know that Memorial Day weekend is around the corner, but did you know that Friday, May 25th is National Wine day? What better way to kick off the start of the summer season than with a full glass of wine? Well, I have a few ideas to help you celebrate this delightful occasion right here in northeast Indiana. Satek Winery View this post on Instagram If April showers bring May flowers, what do frozen showers bring, cacti? #OhMy #CaseOfTheMondays #🌧💐❄️🌵 A post shared by Satek Winery (@satekwinery) on Apr 9, 2018 at 6:47am PDT This winery is located in Fremont, Indiana and offers over 40 varieties of wine. If you can’t celebrate on Friday, stop in on Saturday for a tour and a tasting. Tours are offered on Saturdays and Sundays at 12:30, 2:30, and 3:30 p.m.   Two EE’s Winery View this post on Instagram Happy Daylight Savings! Savor that extra hour of sunshine on our patio with a glass of your favorite ☀️#daylightsavings A post shared by Two-EE's Winery (@twoeeswinery) on Mar 11, 2018 at 9:36am PDT Located less than 20 miles from downtown Fort Wayne in Huntington, Indiana, Two EE’s offers a variety of fruity wines with a beautiful scenery. On Friday, you can enjoy your wine while listening to The Colin Boyd Trio live, and grab a bite from one of the food trucks on-site. Check out their Facebook Event for more details.   Country Heritage Winery View this post on Instagram It’s a great day for a CH Wine Slushie! #wineslushies #chwinery A post shared by Country Heritage Winery (@countryheritagewinery) on May 16, 2018 at 11:05am PDT   Also under 20 miles from downtown Fort Wayne, Country Heritage is located in Laotto, Indiana. Taste some of their award-winning wine on Friday from 6-9 p.m., enjoy live music from Acme Blues Band and satisfy your hunger with food from Sol Kitchen.   Wine Down View this post on Instagram Tables are set and couches are fluffed. We're ready for you. 🍹🍸🍷 #downtown #indiana #dtfw #fortwayne #myfortwayne #bar #bars #cocktails #craftcocktails #craftcocktailsbro #resturant #bartenderlife #serverlife #hongkong #barstuff #cocktailporn #foodporn #equipment #vape #restaurants #winedownfw A post shared by Copper Spoon (@copperspoonfw) on Jun 23, 2016 at 2:34pm PDT   If you’re feeling the downtown vibe, try Wine Down located in the heart of Fort Wayne off of Jefferson Boulevard. Split some tapas with your friends while enjoying a glass of chardonnay.   Nick’s Wine & Martini Bar View this post on Instagram It's a beautiful day to come enjoy our patio! Not to mention we have karaoke starting now!! #nofilter #patiolife #beautifulweather #nicksmwbar #liveinthe05...

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Fort Wayne Outdoor Dining Options
May12

Fort Wayne Outdoor Dining Options

It’s finally the time of year where it’s warming up, and we can take our socializing outside. For me, the Indiana summers are just one more reason that I love where I live. There’s nothing I enjoy more than socializing, eating, and drinking in an outdoor space; and believe it or not, Fort Wayne offers plenty of outdoor dining options. I did a series called Dining Al Fresco where I covered a handful of locally-owned places with outdoor dining. This time I’m going to condense it all into one amazing post of locally-owned, outdoor dining spots. But here’s the scoop, I don’t know everything! (I know, right. It is hard to believe!) I will need your help. If I missed one, let us know on Twitter or Facebook.     Locally-Owned Eateries with Outdoor Dining 800 Degrees 800 Degrees Three Fires 816 Pint and Slice Anastasia’s Cafe BakerStreet Black Canyon Restuarant Black Dog Pub Calhoun St. Soups, Salads, and Spirits Caliente Catablu Grille Chappell’s Coral Grill Chevvy’s Pizza and Sports Pub Club Soda Columbia Street West Dash-In The Deck Dicky’s Wild Hare Don Chavas El Azteca Flanagan’s Friendly Fox The Golden Granite City Hall’s Triangle Park Henry’s The Hoppy Gnome J K O’Donnell’s Joseph Decuis Junk Ditch Brewing Company Loving Cafe Mad Anthony Brewing Co. Main Street Bistro Mexico Antiguo O’Reily’s Irish Bar and Restaurant Oyster Bar Phoenix Pickles Cafe Red Rok BBQ & Burbon Saloon The Side Car at Winedown Summit City Brewerks Scotty’s Brewhouse Toscani Pizzeria Trubble Brewing Editor’s note – Previously posted on May 22, 2014 and updated on May 12,...

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YLNI Farmers Market: It’s Almost Summer!
May06

YLNI Farmers Market: It’s Almost Summer!

Though it might be hard to believe, summer is just around the corner here in Fort Wayne. It’s warming up outside, college students are wrapping up finals week, and the days are getting longer. Still not convinced? I’ve got more proof: the YLNI Farmers Market kicks off the summer market season this month! On Saturday, May 21, the YLNI Farmers Market returns downtown on the corner of Barr Street and Wayne Street for its twelfth season of local eats and treats! From fresh produce and homemade baked goods, to handcrafted soaps and unique gifts, there’s something for everyone at the YLNI Farmers Market. One of my favorite things about it is that it’s a producers-only marketplace. Every single vendor either personally made or grew each product they sell. In addition, all of the vendors hail from Allen or a surrounding county. If you’re dedicated to shopping locally, this is the place to do it. You can also enjoy other things to do at the market, like live music by local musicians and kid-friendly activities, such as cuddling one of the pups available for adoption from the ASPCA! No promises that you won’t accidentally fall in love with one, though (I speak from experience). The YLNI Farmers Market opens for the summer season May 21 and runs every Saturday from 9:00am to 1:00pm until September 10. Free parking is available in the lot of the History Center along Berry Street and on the streets in the surrounding blocks, with ample opportunities to lock up a bicycle if you choose to ride downtown instead. Learn more about Opening Day for the summer market here. For updates and the inside scoop at the YLNI Farmers Market, check out their Facebook and follow them on Snapchat (@ylnifarmmarket). In the coming weeks, we’ll be featuring YLNI Farmers Market vendors on the Living Fort Wayne blog. Be sure to check back for these cool insider looks at local businesses! YLNI Farmers Market 302 East Berry Street Fort Wayne, IN 46802 (Directly behind the Fort Wayne History Center at the corner of Barr and Wayne...

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Kiddie Academy of Fort Wayne Offers Tips for Choosing the Best Summer Camp for Kids
Jun02

Kiddie Academy of Fort Wayne Offers Tips for Choosing the Best Summer Camp for Kids

The below information provided by Kiddie Academy of Fort Wayne. Local child care experts advise families to start their search now for the widest choice of schedules and programs. The “official” start of summer may be Memorial Day Weekend, but parents with school-age children need to begin to think about summer camp programs now. Hajira Khan, Franchise Owner of Kiddie Academy of Fort Wayne, an educationally focused child care provider, reminds parents that popular camp programs fill up quickly, so for the widest choice of programs that fit your children’s and your family’s needs, the time to start the search is now. “Parents want their children to be safe, active and happy at camp,” said Hajira Khan. “Kids want to have fun, spend time with friends, and feel like they are on vacation.  With a little research, family discussion and give-and-take, both parents and kids can discover a summer camp program that works. But the key is to start the search early, while many programs are still accepting new registrations.” With so many programs to choose from, it makes sense to narrow down your choices with some practical criteria. Khan suggests using the following tips to find a program that fits with the family schedule and their children’s interests: Keep your needs in mind.  If yours is a busy two-working-parent family, you may have to rule out some camps that don’t offer extended hours or simply don’t fit with your work schedule. Team up with a friend. Talk to the parents of one or two of your child’s friends, and choose a camp that works for both families.  The children will have a built-in buddy at camp, and you’ll have someone to share pick-up and drop-off duties. Take an informal survey.  Talk to your child’s friends directly about their favorite camps.  They may help you add new possibilities to your list. Consider childcare providers.  Some childcare providers boost their programs with traditional camp activities over the summer.  This is a great choice if you have more than one child, as they accept more than one age group. Once you have identified the programs that will work for the whole family, it’s time to consider – and talk to your child about – the program itself.  Khan suggests that parents weigh the merits and benefits of different types of programs, like the ones listed below: Sneak in continuing education.  Good camp programs combine educational enrichment with fun activities.  At a great camp program, your kids won’t even notice they’re building on school skills. Try something new.  Summer camps are a great opportunity for children to explore their abilities and learn new skills. Your child can...

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