Well, things have cooled down and it’s been a little gloomy the past few days, but we were lucky enough to have beautiful weather for the three-day Lansing Autumn Fest that took place last weekend.
I was there pretty much the entire weekend and was so happy to see such large crowds and so many people enjoying themselves. It was a huge success in so many ways. It is estimated that attendance was about double what it had been the first year. There was more entertainment. There were more Marketplace vendors. There were more food vendors. There were more people involved in this community event. All of us on the Lansing Association for Community Events were pleased to see the growth and the community involvement from so many groups and individuals.
St. Ann celebrates 100 years
I wanted to take a moment to wish everyone at St. Ann Parish and School in Lansing well as the church celebrates 100 years. Although I’m not a parishioner, I’ve been to lots of events there over the years. I’ve been there for Market Day pickup, for school plays and to see my nieces graduate from the school. My boys have been involved in the Cub Scout Pack there and one boy plays soccer in a league that originated through the school. I have lots of friends there and even thought it’s not my home church, I always feel at home there.
Santa Claus meets Halloween
On a beautiful recent fall weekend, my family and I took a trip to a place that is known for its Christmas atmosphere. It’s a little town called Santa Claus in the southern part of Indiana. With a name like Santa Claus, you can imagine how the holiday theme runs through everywhere and anywhere. There’s a Christmas tree near the grocery store year-round, there’s a statue of Santa Claus in front of the Subway restaurant, there’s a mini-golf course with a big snowman watching over it. The big draw is the Holiday World Amusement Park, which was originally called Santa Claus Land, but in recent years has expanded with additional sections revolving around other holidays.
We’ve been to the area several times before, but always during the summer months. This was our first trip in the fall and we found that Santa Claus does Halloween pretty well, too. We stayed at the Lake Rudolph Campground and Resort where people really get into the festivities by decking out their campsite and golf carts and dressing in elaborate costumes. The campground’s Halloween Weekends began in 2001, but it’s only been the past couple of years that Holiday World has joined in. Because it’s such a family-friendly place, it brings in the fun elements of Halloween without it being gory or too scary.
We also did some horseback riding at Santa’s Stables, which we really enjoyed. It was the first time the kids had been horseback riding and the first time for me since I was about 10 years old.
We also made a stop at the Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial. Lincoln City is the town right next to Santa Claus and it’s where Abraham Lincoln spent much of his childhood, so it is a wonderful place to study some American history and learn about his early life.
Our last stop as we headed back home was one I have been wanting to add to our trip for years, but it never worked out. We paid a visit to the St. Meinrad Archabbey, which was extremely impressive. It is one of only two in the country and it’s a stunning structure totally worth a stop if you are ever in that area.
Halloween Weekends continue for one more weekend and Santa Claus is a great place to visit year-round where the holiday spirit is abundant no matter what day the calendar says it is. For more information, visit www.santaclausind.org.