The Journal Gazette
Sunday, September 12, 2021 1:00 am

Around the Fort: Places doing it the old school way

TERRI RICHARDSON | The Journal Gazette

If “I remember when” tends to be part of your vocabulary these days, then this list is just for you. These places are still kicking it old school, just like mom and dad or grandpa and grandma used to do.

Historical DIY

Johnny Appleseed Festival

Don't expect modern conveniences at this festival. Cooking is done over an open fire without the use of propane. Everything is designed to replicate the 1800s, which means vendors and reenactors are dressed in period clothing and products and demonstrations fall into that era. Where else can you walk around with a giant turkey leg, munch on kettle corn actually made in a kettle and find a cure for what ails you at the Old Time Medicine Show? The festival happens Sept. 18 and 19.

Where: Johnny Appleseed Park, 1500 Harry Baals Drive; right next to Memorial Coliseum.

Hours: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sept. 18 and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 19

Information: Parking is free at Purdue University Fort Wayne, 2101 Coliseum Blvd. E., and Concordia High School's athletic field off Anthony Boulevard and St. Joe River Drive, where a free shuttle is available to and from the festival. Parking is also available at Memorial Coliseum for $8.

Reenacting city history

The Old Fort

This is a replica of the fort that once sat in the city. It's operated by Historic Fort Wayne and has regular events complete with reenactors dressed in period clothing and people demonstrating what life would have been like in the fort during the 1800s. The fort's buildings are only open during events, but the campus is open year-round. Admission is free, but donations are accepted.

Where: 1201 Spy Run Ave.

Hours: Open year-round, but will be open for tours today from noon to 5 p.m. as part of “Be a Tourist in Your Own Hometown.”

Make mine a float

Lincoln Tower Soda Fountain

This little restaurant located inside Lincoln Tower has one of the only remaining soda fountains in town. It's a bit of nostalgia as you watch them make hand-mixed sodas, hand-made shakes and old-fashioned floats. It's a great place to stop and grab lunch as many downtown workers do.

Where: 116 E. Berry St.

Hours: 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday

On the big screen

Drive-in theaters

Northeast Indiana is lucky to have three drive-ins, and all of them are 45 minutes or less from Fort Wayne. You can still watch the movie from your vehicle while tuning into the sound from the radio. It's definitely a throwback to the 1950s when drive-in theaters were all the rage.

Where: Huntington Twin Drive-In Theater, 1291 Condit St., Huntington,; Auburn Garrett Drive-in Theatre, 1014 Ind. 8, Garrett,; 13-24 Drive In, 890 N. Indiana 13, Wabash,

Hours: Check the websites. Some of the drive-ins may be closed for the season, while others show movies through October, weather permitting.

Around the Fort is a once a month feature that highlights places to go and things to do in and around the Fort Wayne area. Got an idea to be featured? Send it to Terri Richardson at

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