Monthly Archives: June 2018

12 Amazing Things to Do in Shipshewana

[Part 1 in a series of 4]
By Laurie Sherck

People are always asking for ideas for things to do in Shipshewana.  Having grown up in this community, I’m all too happy to offer suggestions.   My love for Shipshewana goes wayyyyyyy back, and my heartstrings are tied to such memorable experiences that it is extremely difficult for me to narrow my recommendations down, so I’m not EVEN going to try.   What I am going to do, is break my suggestions down into tidbits so that you don’t have information overload and just throw up your hands and say “I don’t know where to start!”

Have you seen our new Shipshewana video?

Shipshewana Video

Watch the Shipshewana Video

The Shipshewana video highlights 12 Amazing Places to Shop & Visit in Shipshewana.  By no means does this video tell the entire story of Shipshewana, but it is a great teaser of what awaits you when you visit us.

Yep! Shipshewana is a Town!

Welcome to Shipshewana

Shortly after the Shipshewana video came out, I starting getting calls and questions asking where they could find this store!   For those of you who have never been to Shipshewana, I’ll start by sharing with you that Shipshewana is a small town nestled smack dab in the heart of Amish country, population 677.   (Although the town manager just recently told me that we’re up to 690 people, and that’s quite possible since I’ve recently seen a whole new crop of babies!)  We’re a small town with a lot of personality,  unpredictable experiences, unique places to shop, friendly faces to become acquainted with, and things to do that keeps bringing people back again and again.

So, Let’s Begin!

Well…., have you watched the new Shipshewana video? !  What did you think?  I know, right?!  So what has these people smiling and enjoying themselves?   I’m so glad you asked…  Let’s just take a few highlights from the video.

Homemade Ice Cream, Hand-painted Signs, and Norm The Painter

George the Sign Painter

George the Sign Painter at Shipshewana Flea Market

All of the above and more, are favorite stops at the Shipshewana Trading Place Flea Market, the Midwest’s largest flea market.   Come to Shipshewana on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, May through September and you will meet people like George who will custom paint a sign for you while you wait.  A lot of locals enjoy his work, so don’t be surprised if you see his signs displayed in businesses throughout Shipshewana.  Then there’s Norm, who says he’ll paint on almost anything. He’s been talking with visitors and painting at his booth at the Flea Market for more than a decade.  And, Yes! There is the homemade ice cream, locally made cookies, bread and fried pies at the flea market and more!   Yummmmy!   Is your mouth watering yet?  Aisles and aisles of the ordinary to the extraordinary awaits those who visit the Shipshewana Flea Market

Cabbies Always have the Best Stories

Blue Gate Carriage Company Carriage Ride

A Carriage Ride through Shipshewana

It’s true!  The buggy and carriage drivers have the greatest tales and can answer your inquiries about Shipshewana and the Amish culture probably better than most.  With a small town population of only 677 people, we know each other pretty well and have some humorous and great Shipshewana stories.   Whether you want to take a quick tour around Shipshewana, or a long ride through the countryside, a buggy or carriage ride is a relaxing and fun way to experience and learn about Shipshewana.   Pictured in the video is Blue Gate Carriage Company.    Shipshewana offers other buggy rides services and tours as well, such us Buggy Lane Tours and Miller’s Buggy Line. To find out how and where to meet up with your cabbie, visit

Learn To Play A Dulcimer in 3 minutes!

Learning to Play the Dulcimer

Learn to Play the Dulcimer in 3 minutes!

That’s the claim Simple Sounds makes when you enter this one-of-a kind music store.   What started as a small dulcimer shop in 1989 has evolved into a full service acoustic folk music store and more.   Stop in and give it a try, what do you have to lose?!   Who knows, you could end up being the hit at the next family get together and impress everyone with your dulcimer skills! Singalongs are always great fun at parties.   Owner of Simple Sounds, Jen Lipscomb’s love of music runs deep and it shows! Jen and her crew at Simple Sounds, located in The Davis Mercantile, love teaching people to play a dulcimer.  If I can do it, anyone can!

That’s Not All Folks!

I really could go on and on with suggestions & ideas for your Shipshewana visit, but I will save those for future blogs.    For the present, for more places to shop and things to do in Shipshewana, plan your trip now at

Laurie Sherck, Director of Shipshewana Retail Merchants, is a wife of 42 years, mother of 4, grandmother of 11 and loves to tell people why Shipshewana is so special…. Just ask her!

Quilters’ Delight

by Marcia Eichhorn

The Shipshewana Quilt Festival is held in June every year.  It’s not uncommon to have enthusiastic quilt groups stay with me at Bright Morning Star Bed & Breakfast during the week of the festival.  I’ve enjoyed hosting Quilters from all over the world at my bed and breakfast and have often been told my home is a Quilter’s delight.  Throughout the year I will host fun-loving groups for a quilting retreat in my home.

Quilters Show and Tell

Quilters Show and Tell

My home works out well for quilters since I have a large well-lit 900 square foot room that is a perfect fit for group work.  I’ve found it to be Ideal for quilters, sewers, scrapbookers, and any other groups.   It makes for a great time of laughter and sharing stories.

Quilters' Workroom at Bright Morning Star Bed & Breakfast

Quilter’s Work room at Bright Morning Star Bed & Breadfast

Quite often my guests enjoy hearing about my Amish neighbors, and I thought you might like that as well, so let me introduce you to Pete and Lena.

Pete and Lena

My neighbors Pete & Lena, have 7 children.  One son and daughter are married.   There are 5 boys at home.   They till/farm 120 acres and 50 acres are woods.  They milk between 65-75 organic Holsteins.   Twice a day the cows mosey single file past my back door going to and from their pasture.   Every day the Organic Valley milk truck comes from Wisconsin to collect the milk.

Pete’s parents Noah and Amanda live in the dowdy house.   Their daughter Fannie lives with them.  That is why the house looks so long and big.  It is actually two homes. Lena makes 10 loaves of bread a week to feed her 5 hungry boys at home

Homemade Amish Wheat Bread

Homemade Amish Wheat Bread

It is amazing how much washing an Amish family has.  She uses a wringer washing machine and hangs the clothes outside to dry all year long.   Lena often has 20 pairs of trouser on the line to dry.

Laundry Day at Pete & Lena's House

Laundry Day at Pete & Lena’s House

She is a very busy mother.   During the Christmas holiday I was invited to share a meal.  We had homemade ice cream and pulled taffy.  It is all so delicious.  She served the following dessert, or you might use it for a salad.  Either way it is one of my favorites.

A Favorite Dessert – Swedish Crème Dessert

2 c. half-n-half (cream)
1 c. sugar
1 t. vanilla
1 t. almond
1 T. Knox unflavored gelatin
2 c. sour cream
In a sauce pan mix and heat cream and sugar, do not boil.

  1. Let it cool for about 15 minutes, then whisk in vanilla, almond, Knox gelatin, and sour cream.
  2. Pour into jello mold and chill.
  3. Serve with your favorite fruit pie filling.

This time of year wouldn’t fresh strawberries or blueberries be delicious served with this?   Enjoy!

Marcia Eichhorn is the owner of Bright Morning Star Bed and Breakfast which is nestled in Northern Indiana Amish country among beautiful Amish farms.  Her guests often ask questions about the Amish & Amish recipes and she is happy to share what she has learned throughout the years from her Amish friends and neighbors.