Summer is here! What sort of wandering are you doing? I would love to know some places to visit. Indiana has so much to see; there is something new to experience everywhere you travel. I took a trip north and had the privilege of spending time in Argos. I am fortunate to have known several people from this community and knew some of the history. My first memory of the community was back in the late ’70s. Tiny Argos was a basketball icon in single-class basketball. Little Argos won 76 regular season games in a row and went to the State Finals in 1979. Not bad for a small school. Read the attached article. I also knew them as one of Indiana’s first soccer meccas.
The community has several parks throughout town, plus the Marshall County Fairgrounds. You would enjoy visiting downtown; they recently opened a community building and a small park. Historic Michigan Road (old US 31) is a fun road to travel and is the main north-south street through town. Like what has happened to many communities, bypasses were constructed, which rerouted traffic outside of downtown and left many communities with empty buildings. US 31 is now located west of downtown, so get off the highway and check it out. Take Old Michigan Road and experience the history and scenery.
While traveling around the state I’m noticing a trend of downtowns “coming back,” which is really exciting. Downtowns were once the lifeblood of communities. I am glad to see communities bring that life back. Help out the downtown merchants with your purchases and visits! Let’s transform our state back to those community hubs where we can gather, share, and enjoy.
While up north, I just had to check out Plymouth, Potato Creek State Park, Walkerton, and Rochester, to name a few. Did you know Rochester High School’s mascot is the zebra? Go see the Menominee Public Fishing Area and launch a canoe on the Tippecanoe River. Check out the Judy Burton Nature Preserve, go boating on Lake Manitou, or take a ride (bike ride) on the Nickel Plate Trail—plenty of things to do.
I had a nice Father’s Day visit to Quakertown State Recreation Area and Brookville Lake. Growing up on the east side of the state, I actually saw this park before the lake was filled. Quakertown still shows up on the state map, but good luck finding it. The campgrounds namesake had no homes when I was a kid hiking the length of what would become Brookville Reservoir. Doing a little history search, apparently, there once was a post office, but not much else, I don’t believe. Again, this is one of those wandering routes that might not produce fruit but does lend itself to historical research.
Since we have mentioned school mascots above (BTW, Argos is the Dragons, Plymouth is Rockies/Pilgrims – huh?, Walkerton is part of John Glenn (named after the astronaut) High School, and they are the Falcons), driving through Rushville, you will see all of the small statue Lions around town. Go check that out! What a great way to show community togetherness by promoting themselves in a fun, positive way.
I got a text from Mike Dellinger about his travels a few weeks ago. (Thank you for reading our newsletter Mike). He was hiking at Pokagon State Park. We were there last when the weather was really cold—snow was all around. No tobogganing this time of the year, but hiking, boating, and enjoying nature are at your fingertips.
Did you have a guess for where this tower is located? Drum roll please …. This is the Cairo Skywatch Tower built in 1952. You can find the tower just north of West Lafayette. Take some time and wander!
~ Jeff Banning