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The Journal Gazette

Sunday, September 24, 2017 1:00 am

For $144 a night, Stutzmans offer house to Airbnb

BRIAN FRANCISCO and NIKI KELLY | The Journal Gazette

Former U.S. Rep. Marlin Stutzman is marketing a LaGrange County house he owns as an Airbnb rental property.

Airbnb's website lists Schönbrook Farm & Inn in Howe. Marlin – no last name given – is identified as the host. Along with photos of the house are small photos of Stutzman and his wife, Christy.

Both Stutzmans have posted photos of the home on their Facebook pages and written, “Here we go ... always wanted a Bed & Breakfast!”

The three-bedroom Victorian farmhouse, built in 1885, is available Fridays and Saturdays for $144 a night, with a minimum two-night stay, according to Airbnb. As of Thursday, there was one customer review.

“Beautiful property. The house itself is very stately, but incredibly comfortable and homey at the same time. It was fun saying hi to the cows and horses,” a woman identifying herself as Lauren wrote. She recommended it as “a quiet escape.”

Bryan Prisock, principal partner of The Stutzman Group LLC, said in an email that Stutzman still lives in the area. Prisock said Stutzman bought the house being marketed on Airbnb in 2013.

Marlin Stutzman was a Republican member of the House representing northeast Indiana's 3rd District from 2011 through 2016 after serving for several years in the Indiana General Assembly. A farmer when he joined Congress, Stutzman since leaving Capitol Hill has started The Stutzman Group, a consulting and lobbying firm; become president of Wishbone Medical Inc. in Warsaw; and with other family members acquired Crystal Valley Power Equipment near Middlebury, renaming it Stutzman Power Equipment.

Messer garners endorsement

U.S. Rep. Luke Messer announced Wednesday that his Senate candidacy has won the backing of a colleague in the Indiana congressional delegation.

Messer, R-6th, said Rep. Susan Brooks, R-5th, has endorsed him and will be honorary chairwoman of a statewide group known as Women for Luke.

Messer seeks the Republican nomination in 2018 for the seat of Sen. Joe Donnelly, D-Ind. Other announced candidates for the GOP nomination are Rep. Todd Rokita, R-4th; state Rep. Mike Braun, R-Jasper; Hamilton County entrepreneur Terry Henderson; Kokomo attorney Mark Hurt; and New Albany college administrator Andrew Takami.

Brooks, a Carmel resident who grew up in Fort Wayne, said in a statement that Messer “is a proven conservative, but more than that, he is a respected and skillful leader who builds the relationships necessary to get our shared priorities enacted into law. His principles and strong communication skills have made him a go-to leader in the House, and those same attributes will enable Luke to deliver results when he arrives in the U. S. Senate.”

Ohio forum set

The Paulding, Ohio, Chamber of Commerce is inviting candidates to participate in a candidates and issues breakfast next month.

The breakfast, which will focus on economic issues, is 8:30 a.m. Oct. 3 at First Presbyterian Church, 114. W. Caroline St. in Paulding. Speakers will have an allotted time for remarks, followed by a meet-and-greet opportunity.

“The candidate breakfast is a fantastic opportunity to hear about the issues,” Chamber Director Mikayla Pieper said in a statement. “We want to know what plans the candidates have for economic growth in our community. It's a great way to stay involved and informed prior to Election Day.”

Candidates who would like to participate are encouraged to contact the Chamber of Commerce via email at pauldingchamber@gmail.com or by phone at 419-399-5215.

Dave Gong of The Journal Gazette contributed to this column.

To reach Political Notebook, email Brian Francisco at bfrancisco@jg.net or Niki Kelly at nkelly@jg.net. An expanded Political Notebook can be found as a daily blog at www.journalgazette.net/politicalnotebook.