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Tuesday, December 6, 2022

November / December 2013

Evansville Living

Sweet and Cozy

The Nutcracker popularized the Sugar Plum Fairy. Now, the Coffee Cottage & Café makes it delicious, too. The Sugar Plum Fairy Latte, a warm, espresso-based drink blended with milk and toasted marshmallow and hazelnut syrup, is one of the latest new drinks that owner Jill Carter is serving up to customers just in time for the holiday season.

All Shook Up

Snow globes are a holiday favorite, and you can design one that fits perfectly with your other winter décor, or one that holds a special meaning. Snow globes can be created from any clear, watertight container and a small trinket. Tree ornaments, holiday village accessories (especially trees), vintage plastic figurines, or brooches and pins are all possibilities.    Here is the list of supplies you’ll need:

Shiny and Bright

Lucky for us, each holiday season we hear from readers insisting they know someone who has “the best” holiday décor. Of course, it’s  our job to explore these tips. Before the glass and garland were packed up last season, we visited four acclaimed holiday home decorators to learn how they impart the meaning of the season. Here, they share their visions to inspire yours.

Modern Love

“You could easily study your clients for three months, go to parties with them, spend a weekend in their home if possible, before you draw that first line on paper,” Ralph Robert “Bob” Knapp once said. “Of course, that’s the idealistic approach.”

A Good Bet

Luck, you could say, has nothing to do with the quality of a dinner at Cavanaugh’s. In the upscale restaurant’s kitchen in the left wing of Tropicana Evansville, beyond the long walkway over NW Riverside Drive, Chef Glen Chapman prepares tournedos of beef for the Blackened Neptune, one of the restaurant’s most popular dishes. He’s blending the sour cream and chive sauce that will cover the potato-encrusted halibut. Or, he’s interacting with the eight other members of his kitchen, including sous chef, Joseph Wilson.

Hashing it out

Bacon, bourbon, pizza, fried chicken, and beer — for many, these dishes and drinks elicit strong and almost “cultlike” devotion. Breakfast aficionados will gladly add freshly made corned beef hash to that list. Real sliced and diced corned beef, when beautifully blended with small cubed potatoes and onions in a hot cast iron skillet, creates a hash that can be a delicious start to your day.

Not So Secret Santa

It’s not every day that you meet someone with an alter ego, unless you’ve met Ron Smith. At 60, this homebuilder owns Smith Homes in Santa Claus, Ind., is active in the Arthritis Foundation, and is president of the Santa Claus Town Board. With his long curly white beard and round belly, Smith also is — at least during this part of the year — the spitting image of Santa Claus. In fact, he’s played the part of Santa Claus for 15 years and even lives in the town that shares his name.

And the Beat Goes On

“On the Road,” Jack Kerouac’s iconic 1950s novel that launched the Beat Generation and its culture of jazz, poetry, and drugs, was an account of young men searching for meaning in their lives by taking a road trip across the country. The scroll on which Kerouac wrote the book makes its home in Indiana.

Get to Know Diddly

As a freelance game creator, Clint Corley has worked with his fiancee, Sarah Thurman, to market a family friendly game of nothing. “Diddly” is a creative spinoff of the popular card game Golf, but with added features. Offering a number of specialized cards, this unique game utilizes luck and tactical strategy, creating a level playing field for both children and adults. “I wanted to create a game families could play together,” Corley, 44, says.

Skirting the Competition

Brooklynn Pace stands out, but not only because of her height. This 5-foot-9-inch preteen radiates personality, poise, and confidence. Those qualities were enough to help make her a top five Queens Court — otherwise known as a finalist — in the National American Miss Indiana state pageant in July. Yet she also has one item that makes her stand out even more: a high-sheen, floral-patterned skirt made from Vietnam War-era Japanese silk.

A Positive Drive

Seven decal-covered Jeep Wranglers making their way around the city are more than patrol vehicles for high schools – they are symbols of a new initiative. The Evansville Police Department and the Vanderburgh County Sheriff’s Office have teamed up with local public and private high schools for Choose Not to Lose, which aims to encourage good decision-making and to reinforce good behavior.

Boutique Chic

The days of ladies donning white gloves and hats for a day of shopping downtown are long gone, but at 321 Third St. in Henderson, Ky., women of all ages and sizes can find up-to-the-minute fashion blended with a level of service that’s reminiscent of bygone eras. “We can furnish everything but your shoes,” says Mary Lyn Overstreet, who has lived in Henderson since the late 1960s and has owned and operated Victoria’s Boutique for about 25 years.

Marketing Evansville

Evansville Living was founded on a question: Why not Evansville? We think it’s a question that can be asked of many ideas we collect from experiences and observations. Question: Could Evansville develop a Downtown public market, similar to the Milwaukee Public Market in Wisconsin?

Mmh, lecker!*

Teresa Alexander doesn’t need Christmas music or an Advent calendar to bake springerles. This Evansville resident, whose father inspired her love for baking, creates the traditional, anise-flavored German cookies year-round for friends, family, craft shows, and herself. And she’s been doing it for 30 years.

Haute Cuisine

It’s not the type of meal that’s typically put together at the last minute. For those who often host large family gatherings at Thanksgiving and Christmas, the tablescapes, the seating arrangements, the menu, and the drink list are often planned well in advance. Yet even the most skilled entertainers sometimes need a little help.

Baked With Love

“Do you want to make a pumpkin pie?” She hands me her trusty recipe book and points me to her kitchen. She remains seated. It’s just me and an empty 9-inch pie pan, my fear reflecting off its glass bottom. A weighty responsibility has been bestowed upon me, the making of, at moment’s notice, a pumpkin pie.

Ringing in the Season

These days, many know of the Salvation Army from its ubiquitous red kettles that collect coins and bills for the poor. Yet the work of this social services organization that seeks to feed, clothe, comfort, and care can be traced back to 1865. That’s when Methodist minister William Booth first began this evangelical and social movement in East London, England. Booth and his wife, Catherine, shared the Gospel and helped to re-mold their community, which was suffering from poverty and desolation. The couple’s work and actions were so effective that they influenced the world.

Editor's Letter

Bolt from the Blue

Have you ever wondered what happens when a more than a billion volts of electricity strike a building? Our company found out on Oct. 2, at about 3:30 in the afternoon. Graphic artist Hannah Jay was working at her desk, behind a 27-inch Apple iMac, when the lightning struck. “There was a loud boom,” she says. “Of course, everyone was shaken up; some employees were even shocked from the intensity of the lightning. After that, we were left with no access to the server, Internet, or phones.”

Chew On This

Chew on This

The Sports Book Bar & Grill (701-C Riverside Drive) in The District at Tropicana Evansville serves salads, sandwiches, wings, burgers, and beer. Open 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sun.-Thurs. and 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. Fri.-Sat. Boogie Nights (701-A NW Riverside Drive) is Evansville’s ultimate 1970s and 1980s nightclub. $5 cover charge. Open 9 p.m. to 3 a.m. Fri-Sat. Carson Brewery (2404 Lynch Road) is a Southern Indiana microbrewery offering a variety of American ales, wheats, brown ales, IPAs, and multiple seasonal products.

Check It Out

Down to a Tea

The historic 1905 Beaux Arts home of Kay Cox at 408 SE Riverside Drive is the setting for the annual Evansville Museum Guild’s “‘Tis the Season Tea,” Dec. 6, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Guests to the Harris & Shopbell-built home can enjoy the view across the street – at the nearly complete expansion of the Evansville Museum of Art, History and Science, which benefits from the funds raised at the annual holiday tea.

Crooning Cowboys

Becoming the highest-ranking vocal group in the history of America’s Got Talent in 2009 was just the beginning for The Texas Tenors. Marcus Collins, John Hagen, and JC Fisher have entertained audiences at more than 500 concerts around the globe with their country, gospel, classical, and Broadway styles. Although The Texas Tenors did not win the grand prize — they finished fourth — the crooning cowboys made an impression.


Three-Point Advance

Just over a year and a half ago, Evansville Living featured one of Indiana’s most prominent basketball families, the Zellers of Washington, Ind. (“Three-Point Play,” March/April 2012). Each of the three brothers has now reached the highest level of professional basketball — the NBA — with Cody’s selection in the most recent NBA Draft.

Comfort Zone

Building Milestones

They could just throw parties and pop open bottles of champagne. But that’s not how Steve Titzer and Ron and Kathy Hollander like to celebrate milestones. Titzer, who retired from Harding, Shymanski & Co. after 37 years, and the Hollanders, who will observe their 50th wedding anniversary on Nov. 23, are building houses for Habitat for Humanity of Evansville. That means they will be hammering nails into wood, maneuvering screws to fasten hinges on doors, and painting walls.

Digging In

In the Details

Details matter. Just ask an architect who takes the time to craft an elegant building design, or an artist sculpting a fine work of art. For a landscape, details enable homeowners to create their own, one-of-a-kind space. As an extension of their personality, home, or business, it’s theirs and theirs alone.


Men of Ice

Who are the best sports fans? The question is as old as sport itself, with every sport and municipality claiming to have the best fans. In Evansville, the question might be answered by following the clang of cowbells to the Ford Center between October and April.


The Sandman

GBF Radio has long been the rowdy yell of a very conservative city. Rock music. Raunchy humor. Or another, more alliterative way to say bikinis on Thursdays. For 34 years this December, Mike “Sandman” Sanders has been one of WGBF’s most prominent voices. And the man is a sweetheart.

Icing the Competition

It’s that time of the year when the smell of cookies fills the air, confectioners sugar mimics freshly fallen snow, caramel syrups windows, and royal icing serves as brick and mortar. Aurora Inc.’s third annual Midwest Gingerbread House Competition fundraiser is just around the corner. This innovative and exciting event on Dec. 7 is expected to feature about 70 gingerbread house-building teams from all over the Midwest that will compete in three divisions: professional, amateur, and youth. Aurora’s goal is to end homelessness in Evansville.

Super Bowl to Center Stage

From catching passes from football legend Peyton Manning to entertaining thousands alongside Grammy-nominated Jim Brickman, Ben Utecht has achieved both of his childhood dreams in the last decade. Often referred to as a real-life “Glee” character, the 32-year-old Rochester, Minn., native has excelled both on the football field and in the arts. On Dec. 15, Utecht will perform as part of the Owensboro Symphony Orchestra’s Holiday Pops-Masterworks Series from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. at RiverPark Center.


Wood and Wisdom

“My pieces are not for everyone,” says Eric Gourieux, the artist behind the wood sculptures displayed in a corner glass showcase at Nance Galleries, 662 S. Green River Road, in Evansville. “It really does take a special buyer to notice the piece and to make the purchase.”

Artful Living

From Life

It’s often said that all art is subjective. This couldn’t be more true for Evansville residents J. Cory Mills and his wife, Annelle, who commissioned Henderson, Ky., artist Chris Thomas to paint For Annelle, the jewel of their home and the centerpiece of their dining room. Completed in 2009 as a present from Cory to his wife, the rich, colorful work depicts items personally chosen by Annelle to represent her family and represent “things that come to life for her, from her own life,” Cory says.


Well Trained

All Aboard! For 25 years, the Local Loco Model Railroad Club has been conducting area model railroad shows for residents of the Tri-State area. The club’s roughly 20 members design intricate track layouts and backdrops and share the same passion for model railroading. “We all strongly believe it is a terrific hobby because it involves so many different creative aspects,” says Norman Morgan, former club president/treasurer and an active member. “The club’s goal is to get it out in front of the public.”

Behind the Scenes

Acting Up

At age 6, Tepa Hall, now a resident of northeast Texas, climbed a 20-foot pole that was no more than two inches in diameter. That pole stood precariously balanced on the right shoulder of her father, who was in the center of a three-ring circus. Hall flipped, twisted, did handstands, and more for the crowd of thousands.