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November / December 2014

Evansville Living

Growing Up in Evansville

Do you remember the Peanut Shop? Did your parents take you to see the monkeys at Baynham Shoe Co.? Did you see movies at the Sunset Drive-In or see the Triplets play at Bosse Field? Did you watch “The Peggy Mitchell Show” or “Romper Room” (with Miss Winnie and her Magic Mirror)? Do you remember the rides at Yabroudy Park? Did you get lunch from the Hot Tamale Man? If so, you grew up in Evansville, or at least nearby.

Regal Remodel

Anne and Doug Duell could feel the five-year moving itch creeping under their skin. It seemed around every five years the Newburgh, Indiana, couple suddenly felt the sensation to plant new roots, and it happened again in 2010. The Duells had built their 5,600-square-foot home on Willow Bend Road in Newburgh in December 2003, and they questioned their plans to leave or stay.

Berry Good

With any long-running television series, there is a buildup of demand just before a new season begins. Revisiting, remembering, and renewing old favorites. Such is life with me regarding seasonal fare. To my regular readers, you know how I enjoy the comfort of craveable dishes while exploring new creative cuisines. Pork tenderloin always has served me well as one of the most versatile protein choices when it comes to experimentation. It has a good base of flavor yet takes any seasonings and co-exists with any other ingredients given to it.

Delicious History

When Chicago native Kevin Klosowski first came to Santa Claus, Indiana, to visit his girlfriend’s family in 1991, he was intrigued by the abandoned brick castle that sat along State Road 245. When he inquired about it, even the locals couldn’t tell him the whole story.

Country Music Legend

You would know the husky voice from Houston, Texas, anywhere, of course. Kenny Rogers was calling me from the state of Washington, where he would be performing around his 50th show of the year, the following night. On Dec. 7, Kenny, 76, and special guest Linda Davis will bring their “Christmas & Hits Through the Years Tour” (Roger’s 33rd Christmas tour) to The Ford Center.

Walking Though History

In early September, the Vanderburgh County Historical Society organized a walking history tour of the Lamasco district. The guided tour featured some of the oldest buildings in the area, which was its own town from 1839 until 1857, when it was annexed into Evansville.

Cooking Up a Business

Opening a new restaurant can be expensive, and finding a good location to set up shop isn’t always easy. That’s why the Main Course Restaurant Challenge is offering up to $250,000 in start-up cash and gifts in-kind to the individual with the best restaurant business model.

A Sewing Sensation

Just as Tim Gunn started telling television audiences to “make it work” and Etsy was inspiring a whole new generation of sewing crafters, Let’s Sew opened to give local sewing enthusiasts more opportunity to use quality fabrics and notions for projects. The store opened three years ago and has grown into one of the largest fashion fabrics stores in the Midwest, carrying a unique and competitively priced inventory while staying away from the warehouse feel of larger fabric stores.

Warm Waters

Lounging in thermal springs or spas has been popular since the days of Ancient Greece, if not earlier. It was seen as therapeutic, able not only to relax muscles but also to ward off illness. Today’s spas offer many of the same benefits, providing relaxation, health benefits, social experiences, and lots of fun. Spas come in all sizes, from those accommodating two people up to those that fit 12, and some of the newest features are focused on providing relaxation and entertainment.

Scarves to a T

T-shirt scarves are very simple to make. Almost no precision is necessary, which makes this craft especially appropriate for those who are impatient. These scarves also are lightweight, so they can be worn year-round. All you need to create your own T-shirt scarf is:

It’s on the Haus

Owned by Chris Ramsey and Derek Cronin, the Pour Haus located in Tell City, Indiana, started as two separate dreams: Ramsey’s goal of opening a brewery and Cronin’s desire to own a bar. When the two entrepreneurs met, the pub and restaurant idea took off. “I had wanted my own bar and Tell City needed this type of sports bar,” says Cronin. “It turned into him (Ramsey) wanting a brewery and a restaurant, to eventually us saying ‘Why don’t we do both?’”

Classically Trained

Three vintage mixers decorate the mantle in Tanya Bunning’s downtown Newburgh, Indiana, bakery. The classic machines serve as a daily reminder of the labor of love of baking and the family tradition, which it was built upon. Bunning, 29, grew up in Evansville baking with her mother Gail Brockman, who did in-home baking until she was diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome seven years ago.

Cheese Please

Madeleine’s A Fusion Restaurant’s menu changes daily based on the fresh ingredients available, but there’s one staple — the lobster macaroni and cheese. “We don’t have a signature item because the menu can change day to day, but this is something that is always on there,” says owner and chef Tim Mills, who opened the restaurant in 2005. “The response has been good. We’ve had it on the menu for a long time.”

Awesome Sauce

Evansville native Kelly Lefler dreamed of starting a pasta sauce business nine years ago when her husband said, “This is amazing! Did you make this?” after tasting the sauce that in 2008 would become Mimi’s Gourmet Pasta Sauce.

One Stop Taco Shop

Taquerias are among the fastest growing restaurant concepts in the U.S. Accomplished restaurateurs Jayson Munoz and Dr. Mark Logan are up to the task with bringing that experience to Evansville.

Steak Out

If you’re from Southern Indiana, steak is in your blood. On any given night at traditional steakhouses and our more modern meateries, dining rooms are filled with patrons ordering ribeyes, New York strips, tenderloins, and T-bones cooked to specific levels of doneness.

Divided Division

The four-car train rolled slowly along Division Street, carrying Mayor Russell Lloyd and former Mayor Frank McDonald among its 130 passengers. It was the culmination of a decade-long effort to reroute freight trains around the city, with the opening of a new bypass. For nearly a century, the railroad tracks that ran down the middle of Division Street created a traffic nightmare. Trains of up to 140 cars rolled along the line, creating a virtual wall through the city about a dozen times a day.

Center of Attention

Back On Her Feet

In June 2004, before her senior year of high school, Jessica Harthcock was practicing her diving at a local gymnastics facility. The Memorial High School student was diving into a pit of foam blocks when she hit her head on the side of the pit, cracking her skull and severely injuring her spinal cord. The injury resulted in paralysis from the chest down. Doctors told her she’d never walk again. Harthcock (then Jessica Greenfield) wasn’t going to accept that diagnosis. But it took years of searching to find the people who helped get her back on her feet.

Editor's Letter


I was born in Iowa, but I grew up in Evansville.” That’s my standard answer when asked, “Where are you from?” Maybe it’s my twangy accent (Northern Midwestern mixed with Ohio Valley) that leads people to suspect I didn’t grow up here. But I did. I have the memories to prove it.

Chew On This

Chew On This

Azzip Pizza (5225 Pearl Drive) opened a second location on Sept. 19 at 8680 High Pointe Drive in Newburgh, Indiana. Franklin Street Tavern (2126 Franklin St.) opened in early October. The restaurant is formerly an old insurance building just south of Piston’s (2131 Franklin St.). The bar has food available with sports playing on the televisions.

Check It Out

Lights, Camera, Christmas!

Chip Rossetti, an independent filmmaker in Evansville, was contacted in April by a distribution company that wanted a Christmas movie. Rossetti didn’t have one — yet. Rossetti immediately went searching for a script, and found a stage play from the 1970s titled “The Rented Christmas.” He rewrote it for the screen, brought in actors from as far away as Alaska, and shot the film titled, “A Borrowed Christmas.”

Santa Comes to Town

For the 15th year, Santa is coming to W. Franklin Street. The Grinch will be there, too, but he’s not trying to steal Christmas. It’s all a part of the West Side Nut Club’s Santa Land. Kids can sit on Santa’s lap, tell him what they want for Christmas, get a free picture, and enjoy hot chocolate and cookies. Held each year since 2000, Santa Land also features other costumed children’s TV characters and a giant Christmas tree.


Music Maker

Seven years ago, Evansville Living caught up with music prodigy Monte Skelton, who was at the time a University of Evansville student envisioning a future that would somehow involve his gift. Since Skelton, now 28, was featured in the July/August 2007 issue, he has seen that dream become a reality. The musician, who plays 22 instruments, has worked since 2010 teaching music to students in kindergarten through sixth grade at Joshua Academy, a charter school in Evansville.

Encyclopedia Evansvillia

The Circle That Wasn’t

The late 1950s were a rough time in Evansville as the city saw several major blue collar employers leave the area. In 1958, Fantus, a factory locating service, rated the city low on its list of recommended areas due to a negative feeling that permeated the community and political polarization that had frozen progress in place. Civic leaders (a term we don’t use much today) marshaled their collective will and formed a corporation called Evansville’s Future Inc., dedicated to making the community prosperous and attracting new business.

Evansville Centric

Made in Evansville

You can now wear some of Evansville’s most iconic images. Evansville Design Group, a nonprofit organization, has launched a campaign called “Made In Evansville” to celebrate the city’s pride and history through unique T-shirt designs.

Digging In

All Fired Up

Fire pits are a growing – and glowing – trend in outdoor living over the past several years. A fire creates an extra feature to pull you outside and create a gathering area for friends and family to sit, talk, and relax. In our busy lives, we might not always be able to get away to go camping and create a roaring camp fire, but there are many options to add fire to outdoor spaces. The first decision to make when adding fire to your space is whether you want to have a wood-burning fire or a gas-burning fire.

Art Talk

Uncorked Therapy

When I learned my cousin’s bachelorette party would involve wine, I wasn’t surprised. When she informed us that in our other hand would be a paintbrush, I will admit, I felt panicked. We were registered to enjoy a girl’s night sipping wine and painting on canvas at Rose and Monet. The Scoop Located on Vogel Road next to Eastland Mall, Rose and Monet began two years ago at Lasata Winery in Lawrenceville, Illinois. In early 2014, the owners opened a “paint and sip” studio in Evansville.


Going the Distance

Quietly, the University of Southern Indiana men’s cross country team has become one of the top Division II programs in the country. The Screaming Eagles have finished in the top 16 at the NCAA national meet every year since 2005, and have won nine Great Lakes Valley Conference titles in a row.

Changing With the Times

Many Catholics in Southwestern Indiana go to church and belong to a parish or congregation. Times are changing for many, who may be going to the same church building but belonging to a new parish. Mergers announced in the last two years have affected more than half of the parishes in the 12-county Catholic Diocese of Evansville, as new parishes are being formed from two or more formerly independent parishes.

Illinois Ozarks

When envisioning the Ozarks, most people think of the hills and hollows of northern Arkansas and southern Missouri. In fact, the same geological features cross the Mississippi River and form some of the most beautiful scenery in the nation, just a little more than an hour’s drive from Evansville in the Shawnee National Forest. Though I’ve visited the area many times, the mountain — rising from the plains to the south viewed from U.S. Highway 13 outside of Harrisburg — always surprises me.


Horses and Hockey

Ronald Geary, 67, has done a bit of everything. During his very decorated career, he’s been a certified public accountant, a lawyer, served in a Kentucky gubernatorial cabinet, been the president of a bible college, and CEO of ResCare, a very successful, Forbes Magazine-recognized health care services company. And even after retiring in 2006, he didn’t stop. He bought Ellis Park, determined to make it a crown jewel of Kentuckiana, and a few years later, started a minor league hockey team, the Evansville IceMen.

Historic Preservation

Helping Hands

Virginia “Ginny” Schroeder had never lived in a city with a great local museum. So when she moved to Evansville in 1975 with her late first husband, Gilbert Graves, she quickly set out to change that. Born in Springfield, Ohio, in 1924, Ginny majored in history at Wellesley College near Boston. While in Boston, she met Gilbert, a Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduate. The two married, and Gilbert soon went to work for Alcoa.


Taking Aim

For gun collectors, the Kentucky Rifle is a prized possession. The golden age of the Kentucky Rifle was from 1780 to 1830, but antiques can be hard to find. In his shop just outside of Blairsville, Indiana, Marvin Kemper makes stunningly accurate recreations of old longrifles as well as his own creations. Kemper spent 20 years working in the non-profit field. But he wanted to make rifles full time, and when he finally had a backlog of rifle orders big enough 18 months ago, he took the leap. His one-man operation is named Liberty Longrifles.


Jingle All the Way

The warm and inviting memories of past Christmases with loved ones are never too far away for Charles and Christi Goodman. As the Evansville couple unwraps each antique ornament and vintage holiday decoration, stories come alive of their grandparents and parents during the holiday season. The Goodmans have been collecting vintage and antique ornaments for the past 30 years, accumulating more than 300 antique ornaments and hundreds of other Christmas decorations including Santa Claus figurines, Christmas cards, and candy containers.

Online Exclusives

Hot Off the Press – Literally

The process of producing Evansville Living magazine begins months in advance of the issue with scouting ideas that later transform into assignments at planning meetings, stories through interviews, artwork through photography and design, and sales through our advertisers which all come together in a finished body of work. When our job is done, we send the files — electronically, of course — to our printer, Publishers Press. What happens there is a speedy and amazing process; after all, a print magazine must be printed.

Link Up

To show how stories in the November/December 2014 issue of Evansville Living fit into the broader world, this edition of Link Up brings the Internet to you.