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September / October 2017

Evansville Living

Haunted History

"Based on a true story” is quite the clichéd movie phrase these days, used to pique interest in the latest picture on the big screen. But when it comes to chilling stories told around campfires and in darkened rooms, it is the tales with a touch of truth that give us the goosebumps.

Coming Home

By Nov. 3, 1917, the U.S. was just shy of its seventh full month of involvement in the First World War. James Bethel Gresham, a 24-year-old Army corporal from Evansville, was assigned to the Artois trench in northern France with soldiers of the American Expeditionary.

From the Ashes

There was a gaping hole in the roof of the building sitting at the corner of Third Avenue and Columbia Street. Abandoned for many years and far from its former glory as a home for firefighters, Firehouse No. 8 was on the city’s auction block in 1995. Looking at the structure, with the roof collapsed and revealing the sky above, John Bassemier wasn’t sure it was a building he wanted. But he decided to take a look anyway.

New Bloom

When Dana Freeman is asked why she opened The Red Poppy, 4910 Lincoln Ave., she has an easy answer. “I always just knew after working for people in small, locally-owned shops that this was for me,” she says. “I feel I’m in my element.” A Vincennes, Indiana, native and graduate of Indiana State University, Terre Haute, Indiana, with a degree in interior design, Freeman says for as long as she can remember, design and displays have been her niche.

Comida con Cultura

Abraham Brown and Ezequiel Campos wanted good, authentic Mexican tacos. To fully satisfy this craving, they were driving either three hours north to Indianapolis or two hours south to Nashville, Tennessee. “One day, we were reflecting on how those tacos were the most expensive tacos we were eating, because we had to put in the gas and everything to go there,” says Brown. “We were eating very expensive food, but it was tasty.”

Sweet as Pie

When Bobbie Weatherford was a young girl, she would watch in awe as her grandmother concocted her own special homemade versions of southern-style desserts to sweet perfection — without even measuring any of the ingredients. With their grandma’s handwritten recipe book in hand, Bobbie and her sister Roxanne carry on “Grannie’s” home-cooking legacy. The siblings bake side-by-side at Grannie’s Secret Homemade Desserts, located at 1701 Oak Hill Road, near the East Morgan Avenue and Oak Hill Road intersection.

The Big Cheese

The Tri-State Food Bank is appealing to those in the River City who love cheesy pasta. On Oct. 28, the organization will host the Mac & Cheese Festival, pitting local connoisseurs of the dish against one another to raise funds for the food bank. “We came up with mac and cheese as a good option as it’s a comfort food we hand out a lot to our clients,” says Tri-State Food Bank development director Heather Davis.

Soul Food

 Picture a traditional Christian church built in 1855 and images of hymn singing and solemn praying might come to mind. At Zion United Church of Christ in Downtown Evansville, however, activities like Kundalini yoga, reflexology, and vegan cooking are the standard practices.

Keep Poppin’!

In the Hoosier state, popcorn is as beloved as basketball. From the famed Orville Redenbacher to the town named after the salty snack, Indiana residents love their popcorn. Of the 25 states in the U.S. that specifically grow corn for popping, Indiana comes in second in production, only slightly behind No. 1 Nebraska. In our state, 91,000 acres of corn are grown for the snack. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Indiana’s popcorn harvest jumped 30 percent in 2016. Farmers recorded nearly 500 million pounds with a value of $71.4 million.

The Beat Goes On

It’s second nature for Kirsten Wagmeister — when she walks into a building, she tries to spot an automated external defibrillator unit, or AED. After three years on the HeartSaver committee, it’s all a part of the goal to place an AED wherever one is needed. “Our mission has not changed since we started,” she says. “We’re right at about 150 placements now. But that changes every week.”

Good Vibrations

The first year Al Crim began his beekeeping hobby in 2005, he found only one swarm of bees. This year already, Crim has found 25 swarms. His secret? Dowsing. For three years, Crim has been a member of the Tri-State Dowsers, an official American Society of Dowsers chapter created in 1998. The club gathers on the last Thursday of every month at the Newburgh Central Library to explore different uses of the practice.

Gold Standard

Many people may look at a gold-colored, 1993 Volvo 240 sedan and think it far from dependable. But that’s not how Pete Popham sees it. The ’90s Volvo often seen parked at his business, Popham Construction along Covert Avenue, has become a staple for his family and staff, he says. “It takes a lickin’ and keeps on tickin’,” he adds. “It still runs good, it looks great, and it drives great.”

Editor's Letter

The Eclipse and Other Shadows

Where were you in the early afternoon of Aug. 21? To catch the solar eclipse, my husband and I had a picnic in the lounge chairs on the south side of our lawn. As the sun sprinkled eclipse shadows across our patio, we marveled at just how different our yard looked. While Evansville experienced 99 percent totality, that one percent makes a difference in darkness; Evansville did not get completely dark. Rather, a shimmery purple cast fell upon everything. We were impressed.

Chew On This

Chew on This

The Tin Man Brewing Company, 1430 W. Franklin St., reopened its taproom on Aug. 26 and once again is pouring up pints, cans, growlers, and crowlers with limited hours of 3-10 p.m. Thursdays, 3-11 p.m. Fridays, 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Saturdays, and noon to 8 p.m. Sundays. The taproom offers a small menu of soup, salad, and paninis but also welcomes outside food. MOD Pizza, 6401 E. Lloyd Exp., Ste. C, now is open and offering custom, artisan-style pizzas. The popular American Diner, 530 W.


Lincoln Land

To be a Hoosier is to know and love Abraham Lincoln, and residents of southern Indiana know better than anyone the impact the former president had on the area. Nothing made this more obvious than last year’s authentication of Lincoln’s mallet kept and hidden by the Carter family in Spencer County for 188 years.

Encyclopedia Evansvillia

On the Gridiron

In January 1924, as the new Bosse High School on the East Side opened, faculty members petitioned the school board to name the athletic field “Enlow Field” in honor of board member C.B. Enlow, a prominent banker, newspaper shareholder, and community servant.


Retracing the Past

July 20, 2016  At 10:45 in the morning, Leigh Ann and Larry Weinzapfel gathered up their two children, Lucas and Laci (17 and 14 at the time) and departed from Evansville on a planned trip to Russia. Though family vacations are not exactly an oddity, this journey for the Weinzapfels would provide more than just sightseeing.


Painting with Purpose

Just a few years ago, Deborah Matthews Murray never would have spent time behind a painter’s easel. So it may seem like quite the stroke of luck that today the Evansville native is using painting as a vehicle to experience and spread life’s greatest joys. The former stay-at-home-mom and Bible study leader discovered her love of art in 2009.

Summer in Music City

Many musicians call Evansville home, making our River City a vibrant music scene. But music lovers and artists of the area aren’t confined to southern Indiana — just a short drive south is Nashville, Tennessee, the music capital of the world. Many take advantage of the close proximity to visit the unique festivals and music events that flock to Nashville. One such event in July — the National Association of Music Merchants’ Summer NAMM — appeals to artists and music merchants from Evansville and around the world.

Curb Appeal

Suburban Cottage

The Tudor Revival architectural style, one of the most pervasive looks in the history of American home styles in the last 100 years, has inspired home building in rural, urban, and suburban communities for decades.

Anatomy of a Dish

True Grit

Indiana is known as the “Crossroads of America” for its interstates, but The Dapper Pig on Haynie’s Corner applies the state motto to its food as well. “It’s like the gateway of the South meets Midwest,” says the restaurant’s executive chef Wess Rose. With influences from all over the region, the restaurant’s mainstay shrimp and grits is a “bastardization,” as Rose calls it, of familiar Midwest ingredients. 

Online Exclusives

Best of Evansville 2018

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Comida con Cultura (En Español)

Abraham Brown y Ezequiel Campos querían tacos mexicanos auténticos. Para satisfacer su antojo, los dos manejaban tres horas hacia el norte a Indianapolis o dos horas hacia el sur a Nashville, Tennessee. “Un día, hablábamos de que los tacos eran los más caros que comíamos porque teníamos que comprar la gasolina y todo lo demás para el viaje,” dice Brown. “La comida estaba muy costosa, pero muy deliciosa.”