NWI Parent

Chesterton European Market and Art Fair This Weekend!

August 4th, 2011 - By Jamie Bissot

Sometimes there’s nothing better than taking a breather from life and having a nice…slow…weekend. No plans, no parties, no commitments….just summertime, livin’s easy. Sounds great, right? So why not?

I live for these weekends. I love to just sort of let go of everything and go where the wind blows. It looks like the wind is going to blow me to Chesterton this weekend. No, I’m not making “plan” plans, it’s just there are a few things happening that are so up my alley.

Chesterton European Market – Into great local food, produce, handcrafted goods and live music? The fresh market is a must. It’s a favorite. It’s a have to. I love walking around – even if just for a stolen 30 minutes to take in the people, the smell and the sounds. It’s a lovely start to your weekend, and you’ll likely return home with some wonderful, fresh jam (Froehlich’s is my favorite!) or a beautifully local zucchini.

After you make it to the market, you might want to stick around town for the Chesterton Art Fair. Art festivals are one of my favorite things to do. Ever.  With activities. local artists and community togetherness – it’s always a great time. The festival runs Saturday, August 6 and Sunday, August 7, 10 am – 5 pm

So, take it easy on yourself this weekend – go relax with a nice stroll through the farmer’s market, then peruse the wares of artist’s at the art fair. Before we know it school will be back in session, life will pick up  from its slow summer speed and we’ll all be waiting on winter. Let’s all get out to enjoy the sunshine and fresh air!

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Got Plans? How About The Wizard of Oz Festival and Museum Campus

September 14th, 2010 - By Jamie Bissot

Dorothy: Goodbye, Tinman. Oh, don’t cry! You’ll rust so dreadfully. Here’s your oil can.
Tin Woodsman: Now I know I’ve got a heart, ’cause it’s breaking…
Dorothy: Goodbye, Lion. I know it isn’t right, but I’m going to miss the way you used to hollar for help before you found your courage.
Cowardly Lion:  I never would’ve found it if it hadn’t been for you…
Dorothy: [to Scarecrow] I think I’m going to miss you most of all.

That’s the line.  “I think I’ll miss you most of all” gets me every time.  We all have a favorite part of that movie.  For over 7 decades children and adults alike have been enchanted by the Wizard of Oz.  My second child is now in her “Dorothy” phase.  If it’s anything like what the first child’s Dorothy phase was like, I can count on many Friday nights spent singing “Ha ha ha, ho ho ho, and a couple of Tra la la’s”.

Imagine our sheer delight in finding shortly after moving here that the town of Chesterton honors the magic of Oz once every year with an amazing Wizard of Oz Festival. My daughter was starstruck by the people dressed in character.  She was thrilled to have her hair braided “just like Dorothy!” and, ok, she was really happy to have festival food too. (scroll on down for last years pics!)  So, don’t miss the festival this year in Chesterton.  For more information, visit the Wizard of Oz Festival Website.

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Also this week, the Adler Planetarium is hosting free admission Monday through Friday (September 13-17)  from 10 am-4 pm for Charter One Explorer Days.  This is a great (free!) chance to check out the newest exhibit, Planet Explorers.”In Planet Explorers, families with children ages 3-8 can embark on a modern-day space adventure and explore a distant world known only as Planet X.”


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Also, don’t miss Community Discount Days at Shedd Aquarium. “On our Community Discount Days, admission to the aquarium’s original galleries is free”  Upcoming Community Discount Days are: Sept. 13, 14, 20, 21, 27 and 28;
Oct. 4, 5, 11, 12, 18, 19, 25 and 26; and Nov. 1, 2, 8, 9, 15, 16, 22, 23, 29 and 30. For more information, visit the Shedd Aquarium website.

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Chesterton European Market

May 19th, 2010 - By Jamie Bissot

Before we moved, one of our favorite Saturday morning activities was heading to the farmer’s market on Saturday morning.  Fresh baked goodies, incredibly beautiful vegatables and fruits, artisanal cheeses, food tastings and music.  I was sad to leave it behind.  The smell of the food, the buzz of the crowd – it all convenes to create the incredible energy of a community coming together.

This week,  I ventured out to the Chesterton European Market.  It held all these things and then some! I was so excited to recommence one of my favorite traditions. I got to try some wonderful cheese, some awesome seedless raspberry spread (which made its way home with me) and the kids went crazy with some delicious cake truffles by Connie’s Cake Truffles – I can’t say I blame them.

The market features over 150 registered vendors, live music between 10:00 am and 1:00 pm and sometimes even live artisan performances like glass blowing.  In addition, they feature special events throughout the season – I’m marking the Zucchini 500 Race (August 28th) on my calendar!

This is an easy way to sneak in some great family time too.  We pulled up a bit of grass and nibbled on our lunch, wandered the rows of vendors a bit more, then made our way back home (a little stuffed).  It was an incredible way to connect with an old tradition in a new place.  Thanks Chesterton for a grand time!

Don’t take my word for it, check out Stephanie’s take on the market!

Filed under: Out and About. Tags: .

The Likes of Which I’ve Never Seen.

April 20th, 2010 - By Jamie Bissot

The beach.  It’s my favorite place in the world to be.  Just the smell of the salty air can bring me back to the appreciation of “now” in a snap.    I love the sounds – sea gulls, waves, crowds (or not).  I love the sights – a seemingly endless stretch of water in front of you, the white of the sand, the lapping of the water as it soaks the boundary between water and land.  I love it all.  I miss it terribly.  I’m used to being pretty close to the ocean.  Close enough to hop in your car and be there in a few hours.

I do, however,  think I’ve found a worthy replacement.  Lake Michigan is grand, commanding and beautiful.  It’s surrounding landscape is breath-taking.  And then there are the dunes.  While dunes are not new to me, dunes the size of Mt. Baldy and the like are quite new.  I’m accustomed to dunes a few feet high.  The Indiana Dunes are indeed a sight to behold.

Last year, when I first made a trip to the beach of Lake Michigan, I was in a state of confusion.  My sparkling emerald water and blinding white sand had been replaced by a bit of sand and rocks – but it was a beach, all the same – the water gracefully lapping at the shore, rather than violently crashing into it.  It was a moving scene, nonetheless.  In fact, I decided on that day that the magic is somewhere hidden in those large bodies of water.

As a newcomer to a Great Lake, it is amazing to see.  And while it wasn’t the beach I was accustomed to, it was a place filled with that same serenity and beauty I’d come to know and love over my life.

I’ve been back numerous times.  The latest was just a few weeks ago.  This time, I hiked to the top of Mt. Baldy (with a baby on my back) and then spent some time at the waters edge.  It was a beautiful day,which had abnormally reached temperatures in the 80s.  I made the absolute best of it and even managed to convince a visitor that she was going to see a part of Indiana she’d never expect.  She fell in love immediately.

The Indiana Dunes are now a part of me, a part of my outdoor routine.  I’m convinced that I see something new and beautiful every time I go.  Whether it be those gorgeous rocks, the beautiful plant life or a new view – there’s always more and I’ll keep going back to see it.

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