Why I Love Michiana: Rob DeCleene
Rob DeCleene, a native of South Bend, loves the fact that he is able to turn the love for the area he grew up into his job as the executive director of Visit South Bend Mishawaka, which is the convention and visitor’s bureau for St. Joseph County. He has extensive experience in the tourism industry, having served in a similar position in Bloomington, Indiana, for more than nine years.
He is a graduate of South Bend’s John Adams High School and has a bachelor’s degree from Indiana ...
Small plates, big taste
GRANGER, Ind. — Five years ago, Michiana chef extraordinaire Sean Kelley accomplished a goal that many dream of the first moment they fall in love with food — opening his own restaurant.
Moving into the former home of Wine Down Bistro in Granger’s City Plaza shopping center in 2010, Kelley’s new venture, Temper Grille, featured a menu unique to the area, with dishes sprinkled with the chef’s fiery tastes and attitude.
While the food was all his own, the chef owner felt that, despite ...
Nugent Builders owners built home with family in mind
Seventeen years ago, Mike and Linda Rodgers decided to sell their more than 20-room palatial home in Niles.
Although they had only moved in a little more than a year before, an interested buyer approached the couple with a generous offer. Having built several homes already at that point, the decision to sell was easier than it would be for most new homeowners.
Mike, Linda and their daughter, Michelle, would design and build a new home. That is, after all, what the Rodgers do for a living. It ...
Setting the stage
SOUTH BEND, Ind. — Anchored about halfway between Memorial Hospital and the heart of downtown South Bend is a large, historic building. At night, lights between six large columns illuminate the front entrance and balcony, creating an image that screams importance and invites curiosity.
On a Monday night in late autumn, deep in the basement of the building, six professionals sit in a circle discussing an issue, much like the freemasons who previously inhabited the building would have confer...
Businesses cater to furry friends
Bakeries, toy stores and photography studios. Luxury retreats with personal flat-screen televisions. They are all business models we’re familiar with — or at least not surprised by. Around Michiana, however, four businesses offer these services to a unique kind of customer — one that has no form of payment, no access to the internet and no opposable thumbs.
This new shopping demographic is the four-legged family members otherwise known as pets.
Over time, animals have been domesticated ...
Mother nature’s ultimate gift
You’ve likely heard the phrase “Stop and smell the roses,” but have you stopped to think about what gives the roses their unique scent?
The natural aromatic qualities found in the seeds, bark, roots and flowers of a plant are known as essential oils. In addition to giving plants their powerful fragrance, essential oils have long been used for their wide range of emotional and physical benefits.
Misty Calhoun, owner of Yamafit in Edwardsburg, has always taken a holistic approach to ...
Plan a New Year’s party that wows the crowd
It’s safe to say it. 2015 is so last year. The ball is dropping with or without you, so if you’re still looking for a way to ring in 2016, here’s an idea: HOST YOUR OWN New Year’s Eve Party! Don’t worry … it will be easy.
Let’s Get it Started
Set a late start time and let your guests know when to show up. Eight or nine p.m. should give you enough time to get fired up before the ball drops. Alternative: Make a day out of it. The College Football Playoff brings two games to ...
El Campito director helps Spanish-speaking children adjust to life in South Bend
You won’t find 27-year-old Laura Jensen in her office, if she can help it. Meetings and administrative items must be managed, but with a few dozen children around, it only makes sense that she show them attention.
Forty-five years ago, Ignacio and Concepcion Niño first brought that attention when forming El Campito in their home, where they provided unique care to the children of migrant worker families — a care built upon bilingual development.
Nearly a half-century later, that care now ...
Bridgman business focused on promoting local artisans
One of Michiana’s hidden gems can be found in plain view in downtown Bridgman, Michigan.
The shop is actually an easy find, located in a lavender-painted brick building at 4217 Lake St. A unique artisan gift shop, The Sandpiper offers beautiful hand-crafted gifts and a shopping experience designed to stimulate the senses.
Visitors can sip on a complimentary mug of fresh Sandpiper coffee while browsing through beautifully crafted “usable art” that is paired with stories about the artists ...
Nothing lasts forever in the world of an ice sculptor.
They create something beautiful with their hands, a few tools and an artist’s eye, only to watch it melt away — drip by drip — back into the Earth.
There is no well-known museum for their work, no place where visitors can pay a few bucks to see the frozen masterpieces of old hanging forever on a wall.
They are here one day and gone the next, living only in the memories of those lucky enough to have seen them.
Danny Bloss, a Niles ...