CFD swears in two

November 24, 2014

Two Crawfordsville firefighters received their badges Friday evening after completing their first year with the Crawfordsville Fire Department.

Kyle Roberts will wear badge No. 12, while Sebastian Shriver will wear badge No. 39.

“We have two guys who are well-trained,” Crawfordsville Fire Chief Larry Patton said. “We are ready to move on with Kyle and Sebastian. They did well in their first year here.”

Kyle Roberts is completing his medical training. The 23-year-old Danville, Ind., native received his badge from his father Rob Roberts, who is the assistant fire chief for the Danville Fire Department.

“It is an honor to wear this badge and serve the Crawfordsville community,” Kyle Roberts said. “I enjoy coming to work every day and being with my shift.”

Shriver received his badge from Crawfordsville Mayor Todd Barton. The 23-year-old Gary native looks forward to assisting more people in the community.

“Kyle and I have a lot of work ahead of us, but the first year is behind us,” Shriver said. “My goal is to keep learning as much as I can and to live up to the expectations of the shift I am on.”

The Crawfordsville Fire Department now has 43 firefighters with their badges. It is in the process of hiring three more firefighters.

Christmas shop is now open

November 24, 2014

Christmas is just around the corner, and to help residents with their holiday decor the Christmas Shop has opened for its eighth consecutive year.

The Christmas Shop at 122 W. Main St. has grown to provide one of the largest assortments of gently used and new Christmas items.

LaRose on Main Street owner Marcheta Dixon owns the building next to her antique shop, and it makes the perfect place for the Christmas Shop. Area residents bring in Christmas items they no longer want. These items are then placed for sale at reasonable prices. For instance, a wreath could sell for $3 or a three-foot Christmas tree can be priced as low as $4. 

“Everyone has used Christmas decor stored away that never gets used,” Dixon said. “Or a person might acquire things from an auction or estate. We take all the items and price them right. People have already started calling wanting to know when we will be open.”

Dixon, an antique dealer, often has people ask her to clean out homes or storage containers. Eight years ago, she realized she had accumulated a large amount of Christmas decor and decided to sell these items and use the money for families in need during the holiday season.

The idea has been successful. Dixon is now able to help families in all three Montgomery County school corporations.

“This year the donations of merchandise have been tremendous,” Dixon said. “The people who have volunteered to help with the shop and who have donated merchandise is greater than ever before.”

Kroger East also has partnered with Dixon to prepare special gift certificates for food items that are distributed to families through the school corporations. Dixon and her husband Bob never know the recipients’ identities.

“Bob and I do not want to know who gets the certificates,” Dixon said. “We just know the schools will get them to the people who need them.”

Dixon has had back problems. She is not able to carry merchandise or set up displays as she once did, but she has good volunteers to help.

“Without Betty Deck and Jutta Hutson we would be in trouble,” Dixon said. “Also, two young men who are missionaries for the Church of Latter Day Saints have been great to carry box after box of merchandise from the upstairs above to the shop.”

The Christmas Shop is open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday; and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. The last day for the shop will be Dec. 13.

Depot Open House ready to run

November 24, 2014

Christmas is coming, and the Linden Depot Museum is ready to celebrate the season in “circus train” style. The local museum’s Christmas Open House runs each Friday through Sunday from now until Dec. 28.

This year’s big attraction is a 12-foot tall circus-themed Christmas tree. The tree is adorned with miniature circus posters and a circus train travels a loop around the tree.

“We made all the decorations and they are copied from actual circus posters,” museum president Gary Vierck said. “We think people will have a good time coming to the museum to see how the place is decorated.”

Another ongoing attraction is found in the Depot annex. The museum has a project that includes a three-tier toy train display with four different trains traveling on the tracks. The trains circle two mountains and a carnival and circus on flat ground. 

“I tell people we are not building just a train display, we are building an attraction,” Vierck said. “There really is no other display like it around, and we are taking great care in making it look authentic.”

Along with Christmas decorations, which includes several holiday trees throughout the depot, the museum is full of items from a time when the depot served as a main junction. Visitors can view the cargo area where many packages ordered from Sears in Chicago would have been delivered to area residents.

“Packages would be dropped off at the depot through the west door and go out the east door as people brought their wagons drawn by horses to get their packages,” Vierck said.

Admission to the open house is free. Attendees who donate $10 or more will receive a Christmas tree ornament. This year’s ornament is a circus clown.

Waveland man struck officer in vehicle pursuit

November 21, 2014

The Waveland man who injured a Crawfordsville police officer during a vehicle pursuit in early January was sentenced Monday to three years in the Indiana Department of Corrections.

Montgomery Superior Court I Judge David Ault sentenced 28-year-old Zachary Blackwell for resisting law enforcement, a D felony, and operating a vehicle under the influence of a schedule I or II controlled substance, a Class C misdemeanor.

Blackwell also faced misdemeanor counts of operating a vehicle while intoxicated, endangering a person and criminal recklessness. Ault accepted a plea agreement acquitting Blackwell of those counts.

Blackwell, who has credit for 87 days served in jail, also will have to complete a therapeutic community program. His license has been suspended for two years.

Blackwell’s sentence resulted from a Jan. 3, 2014, vehicle pursuit in which he struck a Crawfordsville Police Department squad car driven by Lt. Brian Chesterson in downtown Crawfordsville.

Chesterson and Blackwell were hospitalized after the crash. Chesterson, a 14-year CPD officer, returned to duty about two weeks after the pursuit.

‘Harvey’ takes CHS stage tonight

November 21, 2014

An imaginary rabbit will let its presence be known today and Saturday as Crawfordsville High School students perform “Harvey.”

The comedy play, which was originally performed in 1944, has stood the test of time.

“‘Harvey’ continues to be one of the 10 most popularly performed plays by community theaters and high schools,” Director Barry Pool said. “It holds up very well.”

“Harvey” displays the social life of Elwood P. Dowd, who introduces everyone he meets to his imaginary friend Harvey, who is a six-foot tall rabbit. Elwood’s endeavors with Harvey embarrass his popular sister, Veta, who tries to correct Elwood’s imagination and social behavior.

“There is a lot of high-brow humor,” senior cast member Legend Johnson said. “We are anticipating a lot of laughs and other reactions.”

The cast consists of 12 students and four stage crew members. Johnson and fellow seniors Jordan French, Lizzi Latre and Nicholas Lawson anchor the cast.

Pool selected “Harvey” because of its legacy and because it deviates from plays previously performed by the high school.

“We have done a wide variety of plays over the past five years, so I think it’s nice to give the students a different take on things,” Pool said. “‘Harvey’ is part of what we are about, and it’s a fun play.”

The play also challenges Lawson, who is used to playing a comical character. He will play William Chumley.

“Mr. Chumley is more refined and proper than characters I have played in the past,” the four-year play performer said. “It has been difficult to act pompous, because I try not to be too conceited.”

Preparing for the play has breed a few moments of reflection for Pool, who has been directing plays at the high school for five years.

“I was in this play when I was 16 years old, and I directed it 20 years ago,” Pool said. “It’s interesting to me that this play is still interesting to me.”

The play will start at 7 p.m. today and Saturday at the high school’s auditorium. Tickets cost $5 for students and $8 for adults at the doors.