Features 23 results

Radio DJ revisits passion for drawing to create children’s book

Most mornings, Corey Mann’s voice accompanies thousands of Michiana residents on their commute to work. On the weekends, his Instagram feed fills with photos. Backstage shots with the members of Kiss, pictures of he and his son flanking “Star Wars” star Carrie Fisher or actress Rosario Dawson; flashback photos with Muhammad Ali, the Rock and countless other A-list celebrities are not uncommon. For the last two years, though, Corey has spent most evenings under the dim light of a desk ...

Buchanan students personify impact of new endowment

Alex Tobler and Dylan Catalano inspect the library of their middle school, a space that has been refurbished since their move to high school a few years ago. On an August day, the soon-to-be-seniors talk with confidence about their future plans to make a difference in the community. Dylan sees himself as a politician, helping to enact change. Alex wants to help in a different way, by putting criminals behind bars. They laugh frequently as they notice the spotless carpet and undamaged book ...

‘Girls Pint Out’ members bond over love of beer

On a Wednesday night in late July, a banker, a therapist, a chemist and a stay-at-home mom walk into a brewery. What sounds like the start of a bad joke is actually the kickoff for a regular meeting of Michiana women gathering to celebrate a mutual passion: Their love for beer. These four ladies and a few others who joined them are greeted at Cultivate Brewing in Berrien Springs by the lead brewer, Hannah Lee, who fits right into the clan of female beer connoisseurs. The women swap stories ...

Cup runneth over

Unique business model helps coffee shop build community It seems fitting that the maroon-painted brick building with the faded, green-striped awning stands at one of the most unique intersections in South Bend, Indiana. Four streets — Portage, DeMaude, California and Cottage Grove — all converge from a variety of directions, forming anything but right angles. Just a few dozen feet away is the door to a place that reflects a similar nexus on the inside of its walls. People from diverse ...

Growing faith

Granger Community Church celebrates 30 years of service in Michiana Some time after transplanting his wife and children to Granger, Indiana, in the mid-1980s, Mark Beeson found himself discouraged and questioning his decision to relocate. After parking his car outside the former Service Merchandise (now Best Buy) on Grape Road in Mishawaka, the tall, stocky man then in his late twenties shed tears as drivers passed by, wondering if he would ever be able to serve the community he felt so ...

Gondrezick girls dominate the court, charm off of it

Story by Allison Hayes & Ambrosia Neldon | Photography by Wes Jerdon/Westley Leon Studios When the final buzzer sounded after a basketball game in late February, the entire crowd in the packed Buchanan gymnasium erupted. Fans of both teams jumped to their feet, clapping and screaming after an intense double-overtime. While of course not everyone was cheering for the winning team, fans on both sides were excited because they knew they had just witnessed history being made. Kysre ...

Leaving a legacy: Notre Dame coach leads way on sidelines, beyond

Running late as always, I see Notre Dame women’s basketball coach Muffet McGraw through the window at Nick’s Patio on Ironwood in South Bend, sitting in her usual booth. Patience is admittedly not one of Muffet’s greatest virtues, but she lets it slide as I fumble my way into the seat. Muffet and I met in 2004 when I began working as a sports reporter at FOX 28 in South Bend. Since then we have become friends and make it a priority to play golf together every summer. Our team even won ...

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 ...

Life on Diamond Lake

Far removed from the metropolises of South Bend and Mishawaka or the busy shores of St. Joseph and New Buffalo, the humble streets and rolling fields that comprise the lands surrounding the village of Cassopolis paint a picture of idyllic rural living on Diamond Lake. Hidden behind the acres of cornfields and dense forests lies a community one wouldn’t expect to find in an area driven mainly by the motors of tractors, plows and harvesters — centered around the crystal-clear, sparkling blue ...