Koteewi Archery Range: A Hamilton County Bullseye

Koteewi Archery Range: A Hamilton County Bullseye

The only time I tried archery before was a couple of weeks in high school P.E. class. Not one of my arrows hit the target. They all landed in the grass only a few yards from where I stood. So you would think when I was asked whether I’d rather go horseback riding or to the Koteewi Archery Range in Hamilton County, Indiana, I’d choose horseback riding. But I had been on a horse a couple of times over the past few years. I wanted to give my readers something different. So for you, my dear readers, I chose to embarrass myself the way I did over four decades ago. Read more

Blue Gate Restaurant and Theatre: Dinner and a Show in Shipshewana

Blue Gate Restaurant and Theatre: Dinner and a Show in Shipshewana

If you visit Shipshewana, Indiana, chances are you’ll eat at least one Amish-style meal at the Blue Gate Restaurant, enjoy a show at the Blue Gate Threatre, or treat yourself to some goodies at the Blue Gate Bakery. We doubled-down during our Shipshewana visit, eating two meals and taking in two plays at the Blue Gate Restaurant and Theatre. Read more

Ruby’s Landing: Kayaking the Gasconade River

Ruby’s Landing: Kayaking the Gasconade River

The weather was unseasonably warm. Even in the Missouri Ozarks, 90-degree days are uncommon in late September. I’m usually not thrilled with such hot weather. However, considering I got completely wet during our five-mile Ruby’s Landing River Resort kayak trip, the heat was welcome. Read more

Dining at German Café in French Lick, Indiana

Dining at German Café in French Lick, Indiana

It seems lately we’ve been coming across more German restaurants in our travels than we ever did before. Most of them have been around for a long time, so apparently we just hadn’t been traveling in the right areas in the past. When we saw the German Café was TripAdvisor’s top rated restaurant in French Lick, Indiana, we decided to try it. Read more

Sail Peoria: A Private Sailboat Cruise on Peoria Lake

Sail Peoria: A Private Sailboat Cruise on Peoria Lake

One of the things I love about travel writing is that we constantly experience new adventures. Sailing is one of those things we never did before—until our private sailboat cruise with Sail Peoria. Read more

Exploring Squire Boone Caverns and Village

Exploring Squire Boone Caverns and Village

You’ve heard of Daniel Boone, the early American frontiersman. Chances are, however, you’ve never heard of Squire Boone. Squire was Daniel’s younger brother, ten years his junior. Just as daring as his older brother, Squire explored territories that would become the states of Kentucky and Indiana. He discovered what is now known as Squire Boone Caverns and lived the last part of his life there. Squire Boone built a grist mill and village near the caverns, which are located near Indiana’s first capital, Corydon. At his request, when he died, Squire’s remains were placed in the caverns. Today, a tour of the cavern takes you past not only gorgeous formations, but also a casket that contains Squires remains. Read more

Nina and Pinta Replicas Sail the Mississippi, Dock for Tours

Nina and Pinta Replicas Sail the Mississippi, Dock for Tours

We first wrote about the Nina and Pinta replicas in 2013, when we stumbled across the ships in Clinton, Iowa. The Nina and Pinta, replicas of two Columbus’ ships, offer tours to the public. A couple of weeks ago we visited Peoria, Illinois. As we walked down to the Illinois River to board the Spirit of Peoria for a moonlight cruise, we noticed the Nina and Pinta replicas docked there.  Checking the schedule, we found the ships were in Peoria through September 24, 2017. Their next stop was Cape Girardeau, Missouri, where they’ll be from September 29 through October 8. Read further for our original experience and descriptions of the Nina and Pinta replicas.  Read more

Experiencing the Historic Wabash and Erie Canal

Experiencing the Historic Wabash and Erie Canal

1843 was a big year for Delphi, Indiana. That was the year the Wabash and Erie Canal reached the Lafayette and Delphi settlements. They could now export products they produced—mostly agricultural products— to the east within a couple of weeks. They could also import needed tools, supplies, and cultural products like pianos. Within a few decades, however, the railroads came through. Faster than donkeys could tow a boat and able to run year-round, trains took over the transportation industry. Canal boats became obsolete.

Today the Wabash and Erie Canal is active again in Delphi, albeit for just the distance it takes for visitors to experience a short replica canal boat ride. In addition to the boat ride, an interpretive center filled with hands-on exhibits, a reconstructed 1850s village, and walking trails add to the canal experience. Read more

Antique Military Vehicle Convoy on Route 66

Antique Military Vehicle Convoy on Route 66

We aren’t usually lucky. A day late and a dollar short. Murphy’s Law. However, you want to phrase it, that’s us. But not this time. We happened to be in Pulaski County, Missouri, on the day the Military Vehicle Preservation Association convoyed through on Route 66. Better yet, the convoy stopped for the evening at Fort Leonard Wood, located in Pulaski County. Fort Leonard Wood opened the event to the public, and our itinerary was flexible. So off we went to Fort Leonard Wood to see the 42 vehicles that made up this antique military vehicle convoy. Read more

Rising High: Conner Prairie 1859 Balloon Voyage

Rising High: Conner Prairie 1859 Balloon Voyage

The year is 1859. Experienced balloonist John Wise attempts to deliver airmail for the first time in U.S. history. He plans to fly his balloon from Lafayette, Indiana, to New York City with a bag of 123 letters. Unfortunately, the wind blows in the wrong direction. Instead of flying northeast, the balloon flies southward. He gives up after 30 miles and lands in Crawfordsville, Indiana. Fast forward to 2017 and the Conner Prairie living history museum where one of the attractions, the 1859 Balloon Voyage, represents Wise’s airmail attempt.

I was excited to ride in the Conner Prairie 1859 Balloon Voyage because despite my fear of heights, a ride in a hot-air balloon is on my bucket list. The 1859 Balloon Voyage isn’t quite the same as a hot-air balloon ride, but it’s a step towards it. Read more