Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Poe Night!

Tonight is my third annual Edgar Allan Poe Night concert at Trine University. It started as a small event in just one of my classes. Now it is a Chat event (which means the students get credit for attending a cultural event). Tonight we will have a make up artist coming in early for our make up, refreshments following the show, and specific stage lighting. The students have many special effects as well inside the performance.

We will feature "Annabelle Lee", "The Raven", and "The Masquerade of the Red Death" just to name a few.

If you are around our area, please stop by. The show begins at 7 bells in the Wells Theatre in Taylor Hall. It will be entertaining and beguiling. Hope to see everyone there for Poe Night!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Happy haunting: A witch, brooms, herbs...

Finally I am getting around to posting this week's column.

It was great fun to write, and I hope it is great fun to read as well!! Just click on the above link and it will take you right to the story!

The photos are of my back porch and my front stoop. They will make perfect sense after you read the story.

As always, thank you for supporting my work. I appreciate you.

Back porch...notice broom.

Front stoop,..notice broom.

Happy Hauntings!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

A bit of Shakespeare and Storytelling

This weekend is going to be great weather and the perfect weekend for Autumn events. On Friday, the Fremont Public Library will be hosting their annual Pumpkin Trail from 3:30-6:30. I will be inside telling stories by the fire. This event is for your young children, and make sure they go in costumes!

On Saturday evening Steve Etheridge and I will be sharing our ghost tails at Pokagon State Park. The event begins with children's stories at 6:30 and then adult stories at 8:00. This will be held in the pavilion so dress warmly! 

Here is a photo of me telling stories at Crown Hill a couple weeks ago, compliments of Storytelling Arts of Indiana.

This is at Crown Hill Cemetery in the tent.

I just had to add this bit from William Shakespeare. I mean, what is Halloween without the witch's chant? See you this weekend!

       1 WITCH.  Round about the caldron go;
       Toad, that under cold stone, 
In the poisoned entrails throw.— 
    Days and nights has thirty-one; 
    Swelter'd venom sleeping got, 
    Boil thou first i' the charmed pot! 
       ALL.  Double, double toil and trouble; 
    Fire burn, and caldron bubble. 
       2 WITCH.  Fillet of a fenny snake, 
    In the caldron boil and bake; 
    Eye of newt, and toe of frog, 
    Wool of bat, and tongue of dog, 
    Adder's fork, and blind-worm's sting, 
    Lizard's leg, and owlet's wing,— 
    For a charm of powerful trouble, 
    Like a hell-broth boil and bubble. 
       ALL.  Double, double toil and trouble; 
    Fire burn, and caldron bubble. 

Act IV Scene I

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Scuffling along in the leaves with Rose Fyleman.

My back yard at the White Picket Gardens.

Dear Friends,

Here we are in the deepest part of October. On this days of bright blue sky and sunshine, I can hardly stay inside, although there are tasks to do.

My bike and the trails call me, almost by my name, as I wander around this town and local farms. I think October makes us feel alive in every way. I love waking up to the early morning darkness, putting on wool socks, and tumbling my way downstairs to hot coffee and the beginning of the day.

When my children were young I always read this poem to them during October. Now I read it to the grandchildren. They must have a poem in their pocket as well.

This is one of my favorites, October, by Rose Fyleman.

Fyleman was an English writer and poet. She published her first poem at the age of nine, but pursued her love of music until she was in her forties. She then went verses from There are fairies in the bottom of the garden to Punch magazine and a star was born. Perhaps her name does not surface as does Elizabeth Barrett Browning, but nonetheless, when October comes, her name is whispered in the early morning frost.


The summer is over,
The trees are all bare,
There is mist in the garden
And frost in the air.
The meadows are empty
And gathered the sheaves--
But isn't it lovely
Kicking up leaves!

John from the garden
Has taken the chairs;
It's dark in the evening
And cold on the stairs.
Winter is coming
And everyone grieves--
But isn't it lovely
Kicking up leaves!

by Rose Fyleman

Monday, October 20, 2014

This is a fun time of year to study our town - KPCNews: Kpcnews

Steuben County War Memorial
I took this photo one evening at dusk.

As always, here is the link to this week's column. It is a combination of our county read, The Monuments Men, my teaching at Trine, and our first Architectural Tour.

As a post note to the story, we had a wonderful turn out for the tour. It was cold and brisk and a hint of rain, but folks came out to hear the stories. I was able to tell the story of our Steuben County War Memorial monument.

Thanks to all who came out, and look for another tour in the future.

Just click on the above KPC site for the whole story. Let me know your favorite piece of art or monument!

Until tomorrow.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Architectural Tour in my Hometown!

Come on out to our first Architectural Tour!

Tomorrow, Saturday, October 18th marks the first Architectural Tour for my Hometown. This will be a walking tour through Angola's Historic Commercial District listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Here are a few facts for you even before the tour starts!

*The Steuben County Court House was styled after Boston's Faneuil Hall. It was completed in June of 1868 at the cost of $27,000.

*Silas Doty, a well known horse thief, spent time in our jail built in 1839. Originally it was a 12 x 12 feet square of Hewed logs closely bound together. By the way, Doty escaped at least twice.

*The Croxton Opera House was built in 1890. The first floor was built for shops and the second floor for entertainment. In 1901 Sara Bernhardt and Lionel Barrymore performed. Booker T. Washington spoke there in 1899.

*Our crowning jewel of the county is the Steuben County Soldiers' Monument. It was built in 1917 and represents the memory of the 1,285 soldiers from Steuben County who fought in the Civil War.

There are many more sites on the tour, but I just wanted to give you a sampling of the stories.

I am so excited to be part of this event. I hope to see you on Saturday at 10:00!

Until tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

A Short Story

I was invited to a party following the ghost stories at Crown Hill Cemetery last week. I am not one to turn down an event, even if it starts at 11:00!

I was one of the last to leave the storytelling tent as I was chatting away with friends and other storytellers. Finally I picked up all my things (bag, blanket, cape, etc.) and meandered back to my Jeep. Most of the cars were gone by then which made it a bit eerie, but there were a few folks leaving late like me. The lights in the tent were still on as the sound man was wrapping things up.

I put the new address into the GPS, situated myself in the Jeep, and followed the clear instructions. "Turn left. Take a right. Turn left. Turn left.") etc. 

I trust my GPS. I need my GPS, but on that night I don't believe it knew it was nearing the midnight hour as my Jeep continued weaving around the curvy roads of the cemetery. I reached a gate, however, it was chained and locked.

Now I know there are several entrances to the cemetery as it is so large. There are over thirty miles of roads with the 200,000 folks calling it "home". 

I started over and ended up at the same gate. Now I began to panic. I locked the doors (?) and started to look for the storytelling tent. It was as if it vanished. I drove around with headlights glaring on tombstones and old trees. Where was that tent? How will I get out of here?

After 15 minutes I finally found the storytelling tent and there was one last truck beginning to leave. Quickly I followed that vehicle and made my way to the front entrance and out on to the streets.

I was thinking if I didn't find my way out, I would have to call 911. But how to explain that one?  Hmmm... I got to the party a bit late.

All in all, I now have another good story to tell.

Monday, October 13, 2014

In search of the poetry of the Great Pumpkin - KPCNews: Kpcnews

Here is the link to this week's column. As always, thank you for reading! Just click on the above link.

Matthew is waiting for the Great Pumpkin!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Coming Home!

After a lovely weekend in Indy, I drove home this morning following a trail of color. It really can't be more beautiful in Northern Indiana than it is right now. After I left the interstate, I took the back road into town. I took a short hike and this short video.

The falling leaves seemed to whisper....welcome home.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Storytelling at Crown Hill Cemetery

Storytelling Saturday Night at Crown Hill Cemetery, 7:30

This weekend I am traveling to Indianapolis for several events. One of my favorite theatre productions is "Cabaret Poe" which is this evening. I attended last year as well and just had to go again!

The entire evening is dedicated to Edgar Allan Poe. The event is held at the Indiana Repertory Theatre and presented by Q Artistry. Take a look!

On Saturday I will be telling stories at Chocolate Fest which will be held on the Indiana State Fairgrounds this year. Come on out and join us; the chocolate is divine and so are all the performers from Arts for Learning.

And finally, Storytelling Arts along with the Crown Hill Heritage Foundation and Lew  & Knappes will be sponsoring ghost stories at Crown Hill Cemetery.

Crown Hill Cemetery holds more than 200,000 souls. When it was dedicated Senator Albert S. White said of the cemetery would be for "the rich and the poor, the proud and the humble, alike may enter here." It was established in 1863. The cemetery holds remains of such folks as John Dillinger,  James Whitcomb Riley and Benjamin Harrison, the 23rd President of the United States.

A reception will be held in the Gothic Chapel (above) before the storytelling event!  Hope to see you all somewhere in Indy this weekend.

Until tomorrow.

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

The Blood Moon

The Blood Moon by Bill Eyster.

And there it was hovering over my garden in the beauty and coolness of the morning. It was sensational. My camera did not do it justice, but Bill Eyster caught it beautifully. He said he took the shot right on his sidewalk this morning.

I spent last evening in my pumpkin patch waiting for the great pumpkin to rise during the full moon. I hope you didn't miss last night or this morning.

Here I am waiting for the Great Pumpkin.

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Edgar Allan Poe and James Whitcomb Riley

Today is my favorite Literary Day. (I made up my own.) On this day we celebrate the death of Edgar Allan Poe in Baltimore on October 7, 1849.

At the same time we celebrate the birth of James Whitcomb Riley on October 7, 1849, our first Indiana Poet Laureate. 

I love the poetry of both of these men. My dad introduced them to me early on in life.

When I worked in an elementary school, I always dressed up as Poe on this day. Here is what I look like as Poe. Quite a wonderful transformation, don't you think?

Lou Ann Homan as Poe.

On another note of this day, we are celebrating the full Hunter's Moon. I will be heading out to my giant pumpkin patch to watch the moon come up tonight and pick the pumpkins in the light of the moon. Come join me, if you dare!

So, happy Literary Day to all of you. Keep a poem in your pocket or..."the goblins 'ill gettcha if you don't watch out." Riley.

Monday, October 06, 2014

The Raven or the Crow?

Everyone knows I am a lover of Poe. This week is an exceptional week for that, but more on that tomorrow.

The above article is an excellent read on exactly what it says, How to Tell a Raven from a Crow.

I have my own Raven (or Crow perhaps) sitting on my fireplace mantel. He graces my old house every Halloween. 

I also just purchased my tickets for Cabaret Poe in Indy for Friday evening. There are still tickets available so please join me. You can find Cabaret Poe on Facebook and a link to tickets. In the meantime...Nevermore!

Sunday, October 05, 2014

It’s fun making friends on the banks of the Ohio...

Please click on the above link for this week's column!!
The following photos were taken this week in Switzerland County, Indiana in the town of Vevay where I told stories to all the students. It was a great week.

My morning breakfast cafe.
I was really envious of this theatre. I want this in my hometown!
This is the Switzerland County courthouse in the late afternoon sun.
A meandering walk through an alleyway.
One of the sculptures in Tony and Peggy's backyard. I can see her in my yard!
Peggy and Tony's garden, at least part of it.


Wednesday, October 01, 2014

The Battle of the Crater Comes to Angola, Indiana

Last weekend my community celebrated Autumn in Angola. It was a great weekend with events on the square and up at Commons Park. For the past several years the hills in the park have been dotted with the tents of the Union and Confederate soldiers. They bring their household goods, water barrels, horses, appropriate clothing and everything else to make it seem as if the Civil War has descended upon the town.

My favorite time to visit is in the late evening with campfires burning and lit candles at the campsites. I took this photo on Friday night late when I was invited in to a campsite.

Exploring one of the living quarters late at night.

President Abraham Lincoln arriving in town.

Soldiers guarding the President.

The drummer and bugle boy preparing for battle.

After my first round of storytelling on the square I headed up to the pavilion for a Civil War funeral and a ladies that order!

The funeral.

A Civil War woman at the funeral.

Before the Battle of the Crater on Sunday, the Auburn Community Band performed. I took this video of the band. I love the fields in the background and the roar of the cannons as they played. Enjoy.

Thank you for taking this mini tour with me. It was an entire weekend from beginning to end, but I wanted to just show a few highlights.

Until tomorrow.