Features

Local group helping in unique way

Judy Turgeson (left) and Anita Prout begin to pack the quilts that will be sent to a church in Afghanistan. The women are members of the St. Peter Lutheran Ladies Quilt Group.
Photo by Matt Murphy.

A group of women at St. Peter Lutheran Church in Huntington are helping out with the reconstruction of Afghanistan - in a unique way.

The St. Peter Lutheran Ladies' Quilt Group is sending a shipment of bed-size and baby quilts directly to a mission in the war-torn country.

"It's not every day that you get to send something directly to Afghanistan," says Judy Turgeson, one of the group's leaders.

OLVM nun folllows heart -- and sisters

Sister Guadalupe "Lupita" Aguilar Huanca made her final vows as a member of Our Lady of Victory Missionary Sisters on July 22.
Photo provided.

Originally published Aug. 6, 2009.

Guadalupe "Lupita" Aguilar Huanca followed her heart - and her sisters - to Huntington.

For the time being, she makes her home on the wooded grounds of Victory Noll, the home base of a religious order of women known as Our Lady of Victory Missionary Sisters.

Huanca became a full member of the congregation on July 22, making her final vows a decade after entering the congregation as a postulant.

That makes her somewhat of a rarity at Victory Noll, where new members are few and far between.

Technology to become sharper in schools this year, says Shafer

Technology will become sharper this year in the Huntington County Community Schools, Superintendent Tracey Shafer says.

The corporation is working on the network to provide higher speed Internet access for teachers and students, he says.

Huntington North high School now has 11 classes of one-to-one computing, he adds, and several second grade classes at Flint Springs Elementary will pilot a one-to-one laptop program.

Lancaster Township once a bustling center of activity

The Boyd covered bridge was built in the mid-1860s of native lumber sawed nearby, which included oak, poplar, hickory and elm. The cost was $14.50 per thousand feet, and the total cost for the bridge was $900.
Illustration provided.

Originally published Sept. 6, 2004.

Lancaster became the third township in Huntington County when it was organized on May 15, 1837.

It originally contained the areas that later became Polk and Rock Creek townships within its bounds. Lancaster Township is notable not only for its fertile soil, but also for its rich treasure of early history.

'Tomorrow today' for HCCSC schools starting Thursday

Huntington County Community School Corporation's superintendent of schools, Tracey Shafer, sits at his desk in the Administrative Service Center recently.
Photo by Jessica Williams.

The official start of Huntington county schools is Thursday, Aug. 13, and the year will be full of both new and old.

Huntington County Community School Corporation's Superintendent of Schools Tracey Shafer says the image of the corporation has undergone a "rebranding," with a new logo and an updated tagline. The previous tagline of "A place where everyone learns" has been replaced by "Tomorrow today."

Auction take tops $250,000 as 802 4-H animals take their final walks

Sarah Doctor, left, waits for her name to be called to take her steer into the show arena during the cattle auction. Brittany Dilley, back right, watches the auction.
Photo by Jessica Williams.

More than $250,000 changed hands on Thursday, July 30, as 802 animals were trotted through the Huntington County 4-H auction.

But while the number of 4-H animals was up from last year, the total auction take was down by $50,000.

It's the second straight year of declining bids. The total auction take this year, including the appraisal prices and premiums, was $256,360. That's down from the 2008 total of $306,525. The auction had a record-breaking year in 2007, taking in a total of $315,765.52.

Scanning system takes the wait out of getting a traffic ticket

Officer James Wood of the Roanoke Police Department demonstrates scanning the barcode on the back of an Indiana driver's license.
Photo by Matt Murphy.

Originally published July 16, 2009.

For most drivers, one of the most upsetting sights is seeing those red and blue lights flashing in the rearview mirror. The situation is usually made more stressful if the driver is running late.

But, thanks to a new ticketing system, the whole traffic stop can be completed in less than five minutes. And in Huntington County, several police departments are getting on board with the relatively new technology.

Swine flu changes plans for local student in China

Kevin Godfroy, of Huntington, recently traveled to China as part of aa class at Miami University of Ohio.
Photo by Matt Murphy.

Originally published Jluly 16, 2009.

Kevin Godfroy thought he was going to spend some time this spring teaching school in China for college credit.

Thanks to the swine flu scare, though, Godfroy and his fellow students spent their time touring large corporations in China.

Warning of the change came in a travel alert issued on June 19, 2009, by the U.S. Department of State to U.S. citizens traveling to China.

Union Township leader singled out by her peers

Matt Roth (left) representing the Huntington Rotary Club, congratulates 2009 Outstanding 4-H Leader Nadean Brown during an awards ceremony on Saturday, July 25.
Photo by Cindy Klepper.

The last of Nadean Brown's four children is a 10-year 4-Her this year, a milestone she always said would also mark her last year as a 4-H leader.

Now, she's not so sure she wants to quit.

"It's kind of hard to step away from it," Brown said Saturday night, July 25, after being named the 2009 Outstanding 4-H Leader for Huntington County. "It's a lot of work, but it's really rewarding."

And Brown has apparently done it well. Her fellow 4-H leaders selected her for the honor, which has been presented each year since 1990 by the Huntington Rotary Club.

They gotta go, it's gotta go and Knight makes it go

Waldo Knight, shown standing in front of his family's swine exhibit at the Huntington County 4-H Fair, is in charge of manure disposal at the fair.
Photo by Jessica Williams.

Originally published July 30, 2009.

Waldo Knight is no stranger to the 4-H Fair. Nor is he new to keeping the animal pens clean.

Knight is the chair of the Manure Disposal Committee for the Huntington County Fair, and has been for the past three years. His family has also been involved somehow in the fair for 44 years.

Other committee members are Jason Worster and Wade Tyner.
With all those animals on display, one might think it's a demanding job, but Knight says it's not that bad.

After 45 years, Keller's service to 4-H finally draws state attention

Joenita Keller gets help from her son to hang backdrops for the 4-H Fair at the Family Living Building at Hier’s Park in Huntington on July 22.
Photo by Matt Murphy.

Nearly three-quarters of a century ago, Joenita Keller joined 4-H after a few of her friends and her siblings became part of the local club.

Decades later, in 2009, Keller is still assiduous in her work for 4-H, and she can be seen working hard getting Hier's Park ready for this year's 4-H Fair - that is, if one can keep up with her.

Shelter re-opens its doors to homeless

Jenny Simpson (left) and Kerry Wilson stand in front of the Huntington House, located at 576 William St. in Huntington. They are the new managers of the shelter, which has re-opened after being closed for several months.
Photo by Jessica Williams.

A program that can help Huntington citizens get back on their feet under a safe roof is back and running as of this month.

Jenny Simpson and Kerry Wilson are the new directors of the Huntington House, located at 576 William St.
Simpson is a 2008 graduate of Huntington University graduate, where she studied social work and psychology, and lives in Bluffton. She previously provided home-based services for people in poverty.

Ring steward hangs 'em up after 30 years

Ring steward Bob Jones sends a signal to the announcer to ask riders to change their pace during the Huntington County 4-H Horse and Pony Show Sunday, July 19, at the Chief LaFontaine Saddle Club.
Photo by Cindy Klepper.

Bob Jones has been felled by horses, and he's been felled by a heart attack.

But for 30 years, he's kept coming back, assuming his place as ring steward for the annual Huntington County 4-H Horse and Pony Show.

Not any more, he says. This year's show was his last.

"Yesterday told me it was time to quit," Jones said as he waited for the 4-Hers and their horses to enter the ring at the Chief LaFontaine Saddle Club on Sunday, July 19. "It was all I could do to get up and down, my legs hurt so bad."

Local teacher joins colleagues in massive grading session

Mary DeLaney, a teacher at Huntington North High School, graded more than 800 essays from the Advanced Placement English Literature and Composition Exam for a week in June at the Kentucky International Convention Center in Louisville, KY.
Photo by Matt Murphy.

Originally published July 2, 2009.

Each year, hundreds of thousands of high school students around the country and around the word take what are known as "Advanced Placement" exams.

These exams are usually the culmination of year-long high school courses, and students are eligible to receive college credit for passing the exams, depending on the grade received.

Every exam, except for a small number of art and language courses, consists of a multiple-choice section and a free-response or essay section.

Woodstock lives on in one man's heart -- and basement

Richard Williams stands in front of the peace sign etched in his back yard to the 1969 music festival Woodstock. Williams guesses the sign reaches between 60 and 70 feet across. His original peace sign was created in 2007 for the “Summer of Love."
Photo by Jessica Williams.

Originally published June 25, 2009.

As society moves forward, Richard Williams of rural Huntington wants to make sure people don't forget to look back.

Williams grew up in the '60s, and he knows just about everything about the era to prove it.

He has a library of more 200 books on the generation and tons of DVDs and videotapes. But what's most impressive is his love for Woodstock and all the keepsakes he owns from the monumental event that have piled up his basement.

Herz bares his soles for the run

Michael Herz completed his first barefoot half-marathon recently in Illinois. Shown with Herz is a pair of Nike Free running shoes, which he says are the closest thing to running barefoot with actually going bare.
Photo by Jessica Williams.

One Huntington resident knows his feet better than the back of his hand, as the saying goes. That's because he runs mile after mile barefoot.

Dr. Michael Herz just received his anger management therapist license in May. He hopes to open an office in town. He has lived in Huntington since 1988, moving here from Chicago.

He's been training barefoot for three years after he heard about barefoot running on the Internet.

Herz has even discussed this with his physicians and, he says, "they have no problem with it."

Curiosity may be bad for the cat, but not for the brain

Huntington resident David Beaty works on his computer at the Huntington City-Township Library. The library is launching a program geared toward helping seniors increase their brain power through a variety of activities and creative experiences.
Photo by Andre B. Laird.

Originally published June 15.

It was once believed that as a person gets older, he or she loses brain power and is unable to retain as much information as before.

Kathy Holst, director of the Huntington City-Township Library, says recent research has shown that to be false.

"A lot of earlier research was usually done on diseased brains," Holst states. "However, with the advancement of technology, we are now able to study healthy, functioning brains, which has resulted in a lot of new findings."

School may be out, but these teachers are still learning

First grade teachers from Northwest Elementary (from left) Ronda Hawkins, Stacie Hines and Nancy Peace listen as first grade teacher from Andrews Elementary, Jo Keller (right), talks in a small group activity during Model Teaching Week at Horace Mann Elem
Photo by Jessica Williams.

Originally published June 11, 2009.

This week is Model Teaching Week for Huntington County Schools.

Elementary, middle and Huntington North teachers have volunteered a week of their summer vacations to attend the series of trainings, held at Horace Mann Elementary for elementary school teachers and Riverview Middle School for middle school and high school teachers.

The purpose of the session, called Highly Effective Teaching, is to learn better methods of effective teaching.

Kindergartners put new reading skills to good use

Lancaster Elementary School teacher Jeanne Paff coaches student Nicholas Johnson as he records a story for students at the kindergarten class’s sister school in Zhuhai City, China. The books and a CD of the students reading the stories will both be sent t
Photo by Cindy Klepper.

Originally published June 1, 2009.

The kindergartners at Lancaster Elementary School are learning how to read English.

Their counterparts in Zhuhai City, China, are learning to speak English.

Through connections forged by a Huntington University professor, the two schools on opposite sides of the world have created a link that will help both classes achieve their goals - and the rural Huntington County students, at least, are learning how much they have in common with the Chinese children.

Miss Huntington heads to Zionsville

Miss Huntington Mallory Bunting.
Photo by Matt Murphy.

Huntington's own Mallory Bunting will have a shot at becoming Miss Indiana next week at the Zionsville Performing Arts Center in Zionsville.

Bunting was named Miss Huntington last October, beating 11 other contestants to win the crown.

Now, she's gearing up for the statewide pageant, to be held June 21 through June 27.

"I'm nervous. I've never done the state pageant before," says Bunting.

Bunting cites the high-profile nature of the event, constantly being on the spot and older, more experienced competitors as reasons for her anxiousness.

Student composer finds the roar of the crowd a sweet tune

HNHS senior Adam Riecke (right) poses with the score of his composition, "Red of Roses," and HNHS band director Thaine Campbell, who directed the school's Symphonic Band in a performance of Riecke's piece.
Photo by Cindy Klepper.

Originally published May 28, 2009.

Adam Riecke is pretty well-rounded, musically.

He sings and dances, he plays a half-dozen instruments. And he writes music.

Not rap, not rock, not gospel.

Riecke, a high school senior, is composing for an orchestra.

"I like all genres of music," he says. "But I think the sound of an orchestra playing is relaxing."

A dream (almost) come true

Kent Schenkel with the state-of-the-art helmet he uses. Schenkel will participate in an ARCA test run May 27, with an opportunity to race on June 12.
Photo by Matt Murphy

Originally published May 25, 2009

Kent Schenkel has been chasing a lifelong dream for almost a decade.

Literally chasing. And passing. And tuning up.

Schenkel, 58, of Huntington, will be at the Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Mich., on May 27, testing for a chance to qualify in the Automobile Racing Club of America's (ARCA) RE/MAX Series "Racing for Wildlife 200" on June 12.

"It's been a dream that's coming true," he said.

A passion for pooches sends young trio into fund-raising business

Kylie Frederick, Stephanie McElhaney and Chloe Spencer (from left) display the three dog portraits they donated to the Huntington County Humane Society, along with more than $300 earmarked for a new humane shelter. The girls raised the money through a rum
Photo by Cindy Klepper.

A duo determined to help lost and abandoned animals has expanded to become a trio, holding fast to their dream of helping to build a new shelter for the homeless pets.

"We love animals so much," says Chloe Spencer.
Spencer and friend Kylie Frederick were recognized last year by the Huntington County Humane Society for their longstanding efforts to help improve the humane shelter.

And they're still at it.

Local Elk says year at the top has given him a wealth of experiences

Don Schoeff is state president of the Indiana Elks Association. Schoeff says the post has afforded him the opportunity to visit many other chapters.
Photo by Andre B. Laird.

Originally published May 14, 2009.

Don Schoeff says the past year has been one filled with many miles on the road and many friendships made.

Schoeff is the president of the Indiana Elks Association, a one-year term that has seen him make numerous visits to other Elk chapters.

"I have been a member of the Elks for 45 years," Schoeff states. "The journey to becoming an Elk president is not a short one."

Schoeff says that in order to qualify to be an Elk president, there are a number of stages that a potential member has to complete.

A leap, and then a splash -- and another trophy under his paws

Brian Johnson and his dog Gunner, along with Johnson's daughter Krista, display some of the awards Gunner has won while competing in dock jumping competitions around the Midwest.
Photo contributed.

Originally published May 11, 2009.

It's a family affair, but it's the family dog that is basking in the spotlight.

Brian Johnson and his dog Gunner got involved in dock jumping last year and enjoyed it so much, they plan to go to even more competitions this year. Since the whole family generally goes along, the Johnsons consider the events "mini vacations," Brian says.

Women knit friendships as they warm their corner of the world

Linda Lakes, Cindy Shideler, Kathy Harrell, Beth Fulton, Sandy Diffenbaugh, Dortha Beachy and Sally Schenkel (from left) are members of The Loose Ends, a knitting and crocheting group.
Photo by Andre Laird.

Originally published May 7, 2009

For many people, crocheting and knitting offer a form of therapy and allows them to create pieces of art.

One local group of women has taken its love for the art form and used it to help others.

Beth Fulton heads up The Loose Ends, a group comprised of area women who love to crochet and knit.

"We started last October," states Fulton. "I was asked by a friend to start up a group that could get together."

World War II veteran left Huntington a legacy of service

Ted Rogers (left), who organized the Huntington-based unit of the Army National Guard, talks with the company’s most recent commander, Command Sgt. Maj. Jeffrey Duncan, during a welcome home party Saturday, April 25, for Delta Company.
Photo by Cindy Klepper.

Originally published April 30, 2009.

Ted Rogers seems almost offended when asked why, after spending four years serving his country during World War II, he agreed to take on the responsibility of establishing an Army National Guard armory in Huntington.

"To protect our country," he says, after a pause. He had the training and the know-how, he adds. "I wanted to pass that on to another generation."

Andrews lays claims to its famous Clark twins

Shown with one of the signs the Andrews Lions Club had made to recognize the accomplishments of the Clark twins are (from left) Lion Phil Bitzer, Joe Clark, Dale Clark, Lions President Joyce Walker and Lion Phil Ruppert.
Photo by Scott Trauner.

Originally published April 27, 2009.

Members of the Andrews Lions Club recently recognized the accomplishments of the famous Clark Twins, who hailed from the small burg in western Huntington County, by having signs made to place on the north and south ends of town in their honor.

The signs, which read "Hometown of the Clark Twins," will be placed along Ind.-105 - near the Andrews-Dallas Township Fire station on the north edge of town and just before the curve on the south edge of town.

Huntington County man's home is where the buffalo roam

Huntington resident Blaine Kaylor is the owner of a small herd of bison. Kaylor says his interest in the animals grew after much research.
Photo by Andre Laird.

Originally published April 23, 2009

One of the last things anyone would associate with Huntington County is bison.

However, Huntington resident Blaine Kaylor is now the owner of a small herd of the unusual - for these parts, anyway - animal.

The decision to start raising bison, more commonly known as buffalo, came after a lot of research.

"Four years ago, I decided that I wanted to build a barn to raise beef cattle," Kaylor states. "I started building the barn and began to research bison."

Jefferson Township: ghost towns and scenic drives

Shown is the homestead of Mr. and Mrs. Peter Wire in Jefferson Township. The Wire homestead was the site of the first religious worship in the township.
Illustration provided.

Originally published March 3, 2005

Long before the white settlers came, a frequently used trail ran along the Salamonie River.

It was known as the Godfroy Trail, or trace, and ran between Chief Francis Godfroy's reservation further southeast along the Salamonie River to his principal village near present-day Peru.

The trail became the River Road, and it remains today one of the most scenic drives in the county.

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