Amanda Moments
November 17, 2015

One year ago, I launched a new monthly linkup called Tell me About Your Town so that I could share all about the amazing things about my town and learn more about where others are from too. It’s been an incredible year, and I’ve so enjoyed writing about the crazy weather here, my favorite restaurants, local boutiques, free things to do in Fargo and more. I’m so thankful to everyone that has joined me in writing about your towns throughout this year! While this is the last month of the linkup officially, I definitely plan on telling you more about why I love Fargo, and I hope to keep reading about cool things where you’re from too! Last November, my very first co-host in this series was the lovely Rebecca Chapman, and I’m lucky enough to have her with me again this month to wrap it up. This month, our topic is the best memories from around town or meaningful places close to your heart. Perfect for reflecting as we enter Thanksgiving season!

So, what spots have meant a lot to me? Well, I’ve got some from where I grew up in Indiana, as well as some from my current town of Fargo.

-The now-defunct Scottsdale Mall in South Bend, Ind. This was the “cool” place to hang out after school and on weekends growing up, and my teenage self spent many a day in this mall with friends. I went on several dates there, and celebrated lots of birthdays at the Hacienda restaurant inside the mall too. After I left for college, they tore the mall down and instead put up a strip mall instead. True story: I still dream about the Scottsdale mall sometimes.

Spring Hill Camp, in Michigan, a place I went to for years as an early teen for church retreats. I met some awesome people there, and while we are no longer in touch, I remember a lot of them vividly. I developed a love of Cheetos there, learned the amazing game of “Moose”, and how to make a spoon stick to my nose.

My best friend’s basement and barn in Indiana. In that basement, we spent many nights sewing weird bags to use for cheerleading (I still totally have mine), practicing our partner stunts, watching Princess Bride and jumping on the bed. We also had joint Thanksgivings in that basement growing up with her family and mine. Later, she and I migrated out to the barn where her dad built a sweet top floor perfect for teenage girls to gossip and goof off in and host many a sleepover.

Room 403, Hallet Hall, Concordia College in Minnesota, aka, the room where I met my now-husband. My first impression when he knocked on my door in early 2005 was that he was wearing way too much hair gel, but I quickly looked past that and found this boy quite charming. Fun fact: The first time we kissed in this same dorm room, I may or may not have whispered, “I could so marry you right now.” (Hint: I did. And then when he said, “what?” I acted like he was hearing things and I never spoke such crazy things.)

20151116_224545-01

Similarly, the common area between Hallet Hall and Erickson Hall, aka, the spot where shortly after meeting, we migrated to so that we could keep talking into the wee hours of the night because my dorm had stupid curfew rules about boys in girls’ dorms past 10 p.m. Cal and I  instead talked until 3 or 4 a.m. in those crappy orange chairs, and if I had to pick a spot where I figured out this kid was really special, it was there. Sad news: This area is now defunct. The dorms got a much-needed makeover and now there is a coffee chop and meeting rooms there.

Our couch in our apartment. Not gonna lie, my favorite spot in our town is totally our couch, and yes I realize that does make me sound like a hermit. But really, is there anything better than snuggling on a soft couch with a fuzzy blankie and your husband? No? I rest my case.

brick and meWe don’t have this couch anymore, but it lasted many years!

Amanda Moments

Giveaway!

Rebecca and I are both giving away one surprise gift themed to our hometowns. Our boxes will be filled with little goodies representing Fargo or Nashville. One winner will receive each box, so there will be TWO total winners! Enter to win below! a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you so much to every single person that has participated in this linkup, whether as a co-host, reader, commenter or linkup participant. I’ve loved sharing about my town with you all.

November 3, 2015

It’s with some sadness that I post this reminder about the very last Tell Me About Your Town linkup topic. I’ve loved hosting this series and sharing more about my city with you all. I’ll likely keep sharing, actually! I just need a break from the responsibility of hosting a regularly scheduled linkup.

And so, I really do hope that you will join me for the final month. This time, the topic is best memories from around town, or meaningful places close to your heart. It’s a pretty fitting topic as Thanksgiving is coming up on us, and will help us reflect on the places that have meant a lot in our lives. This month, it doesn’t even have to be all about the same town. Perhaps you want to jump around the country or world and talk about the locations that served as backdrop for important times in your life.

Whether memories from growing up like the orchard where you used to play and build tree houses, the movie theater where you had your first kiss, the spot where you got engaged, the room you were in where you you and your bestie became BFFs, the surprising spot you maybe learned a valuable new life skill, or the table you and your family gathered every holiday. Any setting with meaning we want to hear about.

Got photos of these places? Please share them! And if you don’t have photo evidence, that’s OK; just share your heart.

This month, the linkup is on November 17, and the co-host is Rebecca Chapman. We’ll also be hosting a sweet little giveaway, so don’t miss it! Grab the button, write your post, come back and link up!

Amanda Moments

Will you be joining us?

October 20, 2015

As I’ve told you before, winter hits Fargo longer and harder than any other season, which makes getting outside tricky sometimes. We also live in a northern prairie, which leaves lots to be desired in terms of scenery. That being said, we’re a hearty bunch up here and do our best to be active as much as we can, and we do have some pretty places to do it! That’s the topic for this second-to-last Tell Me About Your Town. Please join Mar and me in sharing your town’s outdoor offerings.

The linkup info, button and rules are below, but first, about Fargo!

Growing up in Indiana, I was outside all the time. Climbing trees, jumping in a pile of leaves, playing with my Skip-It in the driveway, sneaking out of the house hanging with friends, swimming at the pool, playing tennis, snowboarding in Michigan, ice skating in downtown South Bend. Now that I’m an adult and live in the tundra though, I do way less outdoors, which is probably a bad thing. But when I tell my hermit self to shove it and force my butt outside, I always love it. It’s just nice being in nature, isn’t it? It centers you and reminds you how beautiful our planet can be.

These are some of my favorite spots:

Lindenwood Park // Fargo has some really nice parks, but Lindenwood is always my favorite. It has so much to offer for the active or the lazy (like me). I like going there just to walk Brick, take photos, bring my nephews to play or have a picnic. It’s where we took our engagement photos!

P1030345

My neighborhood // Of course I’m biased, but I do like my neighboorhood a lot, and even though it’s kinda residential, it can be quite pretty. When I don’t feel like driving to the park, I stroll the sidewalks around my apartment with the husband and/or dog.

20141024_181604

fall trees

By the river // Any place by a river is pretty, right? Our Red River ain’t much to look at, but a few spots are lush and green. The area by the Hjemkomst Center (a museum dedicated to a Viking ship and old Norwegian church) is great to rent kayaks, and one day I even came face to face with this little lady:

deer

The fro yo table // I adore fro yo in the warmer months here, and one of my favorite things to do is savor my icy treat outside for some good sun and people watching. I just fit in probably my last trip just the other day!

20151011_162432

Thunder Road // One other thing I love doing in the summer is playing mini golf, and Thunder Road is the best place to do just that in town. You can play some holes outside, hit up the batting cage or race around in go karts.

Downtown // Our downtown is really great. Our city has spent a lot of money to revitalize it and it has a sort of “old world charm” about it. I like window shopping all the boutiques down Broadway or stopping in somewhere to grab a bite and eat outdoors, weather permitting. Rhombus Guys pizza has a great rooftop patio. Speaking of downtown, I just got word that we approved an ice rink there, and this year the first farmer’s market was held for afew hours each Saturday too.

Snowboarding nearby // OK fine, I don’t do this anymore, but I could! I used to love getting out and snowboarding. The nearest spot to do that here is in Alexandria, Minnesota.

 

Amanda Moments



Next Month (the LAST Month!)
Please join me again next month — and LAST month! — for the next installment of Tell Me About Your Town! The topic will be best memories from around town/meaningful places close to your heart, and the co-host will be Rebecca Chapman. A nice Thanksgiving-esque topic to reflect and wrap up this series. We’ll also be hosting a sweet little giveaway to mark the occasion, so don’t miss it! Mark your calendars and come back on Nov. 17 to link up!

Let me know if you want to be added to my monthly email reminder!

October 6, 2015

Are you guys ready for the second to last ever Tell Me About Your Town? This month, we’re going outdoors and talking about our favorite outdoor activities and best outside spots in our towns.

Where is the most beautiful spot to have a picnic, stargaze or simply take in nature? Where do you go when you need some fresh air? What does your town look like outside in each season? What activities do you most like to do outdoors? Anything specific that your town organizes?

Please join me and my co-host Mar from T.O & Fro on Tuesday, October 20. Grab the button, write your post, come back and link up!

Amanda Moments

And don’t forget about the FINAL Tell Me About Your Town link up on November 17 with Rebecca Chapman to share your best memories from around your town or meaningful places close to your heart in your hometown.

Let me know if you want to be added to my monthly email reminder!

September 15, 2015

Being a native Hoosier, when I first moved to the Fargo area, I was hyper-aware of all the strange things people here said. It was almost like another language sometimes. I had to ask what certain sayings or words meant, and sometimes there was confusion because the way I talked was different than the way my new friends did.

Ten years later, I’ve adjusted and most of the Fargo-area colloquialisms are old hat. In fact, I’ve even (unintentionally) adopted the Nordic “o” sound and slight accent.

This post is one that’s been on my list for many months, because I think regional slang is just so fascinating. That’s why I knew it was a perfect Tell Me About Your Town topic! Please join Christine and me in sharing your own region’s unique sayings.

The linkup info, button and rules are below, but first, I present you … the weird things that people say in eastern North Dakota/western Minnesota (from the perspective of an Indiana girl).

things they say in fargo

Karaoke
The one thing that grates on my nerves more than anything up here is how locals pronounce karaoke. All I had ever heard it pronounced before was “carry-oh-key.” Up here? “Kuh-row-key.” Blech.

Kitty corner
This is another thing I will argue to the death about. When something is across the street on the other side from you, in Indiana, it is catty corner. Here, it’s kitty corner. Which you’d think I prefer because cats are awesome, but even Buzzfeed agrees with me that it’s catty.

kitty corner

Taco in a bag
Back home, walking tacos were the shit. You know, taco meat and toppings inside a bag of Fritos. Here, they are tacos in a bag and they are eaten with Doritos. I would be upset about this, but it turns out it’s damn delicious with Doritos, so I give this one a pass.

Aunt
Where I come from, your parents’ sister is your aunt, rhyming with ant. Here, it rhymes with haunt.

Lunch/dinner dinner/supper
This is the most confusing thing of them all. Many folk here (primarily the older ones) refer to the second meal of the day as dinner and the last one as supper. Which makes dinner plans quite confusing sometimes. So in Indiana, we ate breakfast, lunch and dinner; here they eat breakfast, dinner and supper.

Hotdish
I’m on a fine line between hating and embracing this term. In Minnesota country, they eat hotdish. Hotdish is any kind of meal consisting of a meat, veggie, starch and cream of whatever soup baked in the oven. So basically, what the rest of the world calls a casserole. I literally had never heard of a hotdish before moving here, but I came to quickly find out they are all the rage here. It’s like, a giant culture thing. Tater tot hot dish is by far the most popular (and delicious).

Ride bike/drive truck
I recall finding this little colloquial gem out when I worked as a summer intern as a copy editor at the Fargo newspaper. I saw the phrase “drive truck,” as in “No I can’t go to the party. I gotta drive truck tomorrow.” and I promptly red-penned that sucker for correction. I then found out that it is such a common phrase here that they let it fly, but only by profession. So if you are a semi driver that gets paid from a company, you can drive truck. But if you’re poppin’ in your pickup to get some milk, you drive your truck or a truck or the truck, or you drive trucks, or you’re a truck driver.

Similar to ride bike. My husband sometimes says things like “I remember when I was a kid riding bike to my neighbor’s house,” and I always say “you mean riding your bike? You’re missing an article, chief.” But no, he contends that’s just how they say it here. I will never succumb to this silly rule of a grammatical mess.

“Oh fer cute”
This really is an endearing little phrase you’ll hear old grannies say in these parts. Show someone your rad new kicks and you’ll get an “Oh fer cute” response. Tell a side-splitting knock-knock joke and you’ll get an “oh fer funny.” Say something stupid and you’ll get an “Oh fer dumb.” It’s a thing.

Uff Da
The most cliche and totally true phrase Minnesotans and North Dakotans say is definitely uff dah (pronounced “oof-dah”). You’d think this is limited to old people but I legit hear young folk say this too. It’s used as a strong exclamation of any emotion, but I like to think of it as a “gosh darn it.”

uff da

 

Doncha know
Another cute expression similar to Uff Da and the “oh fers.” As in, “Dolores said it’s pretty windy out today, doncha know?” Also must be said with the long “o” sound.

Duck Duck Gray Duck
You probably know this game as Duck Duck Goose.

duck duck gray duckvia

Frig
Many folk (mostly older) shorten the word refrigerator to frig. They still pronounce it fridge, but write it as frig.

frig off ricky This is a different frig, but we do still like our Trailer Park Boys up here. Being a Canadian show, it hits pretty close to home.

Pop
The one thing both (most) Hoosiers and Fargoans can agree on though, is that bubbly carbonated beverages are called pop.

This is also pretty accurate:

Amanda Moments


Next Month & An Announcement
Please join me again next month for the next installment of Tell Me About Your Town! The topic will be outdoor spots or activities, and my co-host will be Mar from T.O & Fro. Mark your calendars and come back on Oct. 20 to link up!

Sadly, I’ve decided to end this linkup after this November. It had a wonderful one-year run, and I’m so grateful to each of you that has co-hosted or linked up. Please join me for the FINAL link up on Nov. 17 with Rebecca Chapman (fittingly, my first and last co-host) to share your best memories from around your town or meaningful places close to your heart. And, there will be a sweet giveaway to celebrate as well. Don’t miss it!

Let me know if you want to be added to my monthly email reminder!

September 1, 2015

I am so excited for September’s Tell Me About Your Town topic! I’ve been collecting thoughts on this topic for months for a blog post, but thought it would be great to extend to this linkup and ask all of ya’ll to join.

We’re talking regional slang or unique phrases people use in your area. It’s fascinating how different people in different areas of the same country talk. You know how little pockets of certain areas speak a certain way and sort of have their own language? What are those words or phrases that only people in your neck of the woods use?

This month, feel free to go “outside your town” and use a region instead. Maybe it’s the South where you call shopping carts buggys, or in Maine where people say “wicked.” Do you call the last meal of the day dinner or supper? Tell us every unique-to-your-area words or phrases you say that may be confusing to someone else.

My co-host this month will be Christine from Christine Everyday. Mark your calendars, grab the button and come back on Sept. 15 to link up!

Amanda Moments

Let me know if you want to be added to my monthly email reminder!

August 18, 2015

Know what I love more than getting a really good deal? Free things. Hence my 100% support of Chelsea’s idea to make that this month’s Tell Me About Your Town linkup topic! So let’s take a moment to celebrate all the amazing experiences just waiting to be had without spending a dime. I’ll be sharing the free things to do in Fargo and would love to hear what’s free in your town too! Think of this as a handy dandy vacation guide from a local.

free things to do in fargo

Visit the Park

Fargo has some really nice parks and a surprising amount of them for the size of the town. I’ve found some adorable ones hidden in neighborhoods near me, but there are also some bigger ones with lots to do too. Lindenwood Park is probably my favorite — they have lots of great walking and bike trails, playgrounds, baseball diamonds, a fountain that the puppies love and camp and fishing sites. I highly recommend picnicking in the park or just taking a stroll or rollerblading on a nice summer day.

Go to the Mall

Just because you’re surrounded by stores doesn’t mean you have to spend money, people. Be a creeper and get your share of people watching in! If you’re old, you may also enjoy speed walking the hallways in the early morning hours.

Who knows, maybe you’ll even learn something at the mall! The West Acres mall in south Fargo has a Roger Maris exhibit in one wing with memorabilia from his baseball days and a free movie playing too. Duck inside the tucked away nook for some knowledge … or just act like teenagers and make out in the dark.

Bonus: Both the West Acres Mall and Moorhead Center Mall have farmer’s markets in their lots right now, which means free access to farmers and all their know-how. While it’s not free, you can score great deals on produce, especially near the end of the day when they want to get rid of everything.

Window Shop on Broadway

Our downtown has such an old world charm about it and is a really cute, distinct place to hang out in the daytime. There are some amazing boutiques along Broadway too, and if you’re strapped for cash, window shopping can be just as fun. Plus, more people watching opportunities abound. If you’re lucky, you’ll also catch some of our resident hobos!

Look for Hidden Art Downtown

One really cool thing about our downtown is that they have lots of hidden art. Like, in the sideways, on buildings, in alleyways and behind hidden doors. It’s like a treasure hunt.

Speaking of art, the Plains Art Museum is a great cultural offering here, and admission is free every 2nd and 4th Thursday of the month!

Volunteer

There are so many non-profits and charities in town and lots of them are always looking for volunteers to lend a hand. Do some good for the world and give back! My personal suggestion is to play with the animals at one of our local pet rescues. Cat’s Cradle Shelter and 4 Luv of Dog Rescue get my support.

Visit the Woodchipper

Take a stop by our FM Convention & Visitor’s Bureau where they have the actual woodchipper from the movie Fargo. They also have a replica on display that you can take a fun photo with!

Fun fact: Josh Duhamel was just in town the other day shooting a tourism commercial for the state and he even posed with it!

Road Trip!

If you have access to a car, it’s always fun to wander around and see what gems you come across. There are lots of cute little towns scattered in the countryside around here. My suggestions would be to check out Casselton or Harwood, N.D., or Hawley, Minn.

Find a Fair

There are some fun little fairs and markets in town in the summertime too with great opportunities to meet local craftsmen. Walk the booths at Unglued’s Craft Fest or the annual Street Fair for more people watching too!

 

Amanda Moments


Next Month
Please join me again next month for the next installment of Tell Me About Your Town! The topic will be regional slang or unique phrases people use in your area, and my co-host will be Christine from Christine Everyday. Mark your calendars and come back on Sept. 15 to link up!

Let me know if you want to be added to my monthly email reminder!

August 6, 2015

This past Tuesday evening, I attended an amazing event called Banquet in a Field put on by CommonGround North Dakota and fellow North Dakota blogger Katie Pinke. Katie is a blogger who’s been at this game far longer than me, and about a year ago, I found her blog and fell in love with her voice. She’s become someone I really admire for many reasons, but we hadn’t even met in person yet, so when I got the invite to this event, I was beyond honored.

banquet in a field collage

CommonGround North Dakota is a group of farm women trying to start conversations about people and food. It’s all very agricultural, farm-to-table, and celebrating good folk and the great food they grow right in our own backyards. This event gathered local influencers and leaders, media and city folk out to the farm to see and talk about food and farming up close and personal. And for this Hoosier transplanted to Fargo, I couldn’t have been more proud of what these people do in my new home state.

As my husband and I drove just out of city limits, the concrete jungles quickly turned into wispy, lean grasses as our car traveled down I94, and those grasses quickly turned into open fields with green, growing crops.

Upon arrival at Peterson Farms Seed, the company hosting the event on their land, we were transported from our cars to the nearby field via a trailer hooked up to a tractor. At the field, we were greeted by a host of volunteers, farmers and film crews that made me feel like a celebrity stepping out to the paparazzi. Tractors, combines and farm equipment scattered throughout the grounds, with grain and seed bins in the background.

The setup itself was upscale, yet somehow fit the cozy field atmosphere. Rusticly decorated tables and flower, lace and burlap centerpieces sat behind the white wooden archway that led us toward gentlemen playing music, a very welcoming wine and beer tent and several farmers waiting at tables scattered between the rows of crops to tell us about the various North Dakota commodities. At each table was the raw seed so we could see its harvested, natural state, plus an appetizer created by local chefs Sarah and Tony Nasello of Sarello’s, that each featured an ingredient, as well as some notable facts about the crop itself and examples of finished products that you would find in the store. The point was so we could see that everyday items and amazing dishes are made with the great products grown a few miles away.

banquet in a field appetizer tables

I gotta tell you, the sunflower brittle completely blew. my. mind. I had no idea it was so delicious! The man there told us that North Dakota is the leading producer of sunflower crops in the country and that sunflower oil is the best oil to cook with because it has the highest amount of omega 6s. I became so enamored with it that I told Cal to buy me a bucket of sunflower brittle for my next birthday.

We also sampled corn fritters, wheatberry salad, flax muffins, candied bacon (Cal’s favorite) and lamb kebabs (which was the first time I’d ever tried lamb, and I apologized to it), and everything was fresh and beyond delicious.

We learned fun facts, like…

-96% of flax and more than 50% of the sunflowers in the U.S. are grown in North Dakota
-96% North Dakota’s barley is used for beer
-90% of the state’s total land is used for agriculture
-Cattle outnumber people 3:1 in the state
-ND grows more than 2.7 billion pounds of potatoes in a year
-More than 70% of ND soybeans go to Asia, which means we feed the world!

After visiting the farmers’ tables, snacking on apps, drinking all the wine and meeting new friends, Carl and Julie Peterson gave us all a warm welcome to their land and shared what they do before passing it off to the Nasellos to describe the amazing meal we had coming, and we all gave thanks to the bounty that we had before us that these amazing people grew and raised.

carl and julie peterson

For dinner, we were served  handmade gnocchi, a chilled watermelon cube with lime juice, carved beef tenderloin, potato salad, pickled radishes and beets, cucumber and tomato salad, and for dessert, the most amazing honey vanilla ice cream in a cookie cup. Tony and Sarah Nasello came up with the menu, the NDSU BBQ Bootcamp cooked the meats on site in a food truck in the corner of the field and a lovely and attentive group of FFA kids served us, including Katie’s own son. The volunteers also made sure to pump us full of wine and beer, which is always welcome:)

dinner collage

Guys, that beef in the above photo is legit the most amazing steak I think I’ve ever eaten, and that honey ice cream was divine.

During the meal, we sat with Nancy, who is a farmer and on the North Dakota Beef Commission, and Mrs. Laura Beth, whose husband is a fourth generation ND farmer as well! Nancy shared with us that the number of dairy farmers in the state has drastically reduced in the past few decades — like from 1,800 to 100 — and they had to ship in milk from other areas. She also told us that there is quite a bit of new technology in the beef industry, but it’s flying under the radar because it’s not as glamorous as agricultural technologies such as drones (which, by the way, were flying above us getting footage of the event!).

The day was absolutely gorgeous, and though there were a few too many bugs at first, they quickly went away as the night went on, and then we were treated to a beautiful ND sunset.

north dakota sky

As the tractor brought us back to our cars — and to reality again  — we received swag bags packed with more local goodies thanks to sponsors such as the Soybean Council and Corn Grower’s Association.

swag bag

What an enchanting, eye-opening and awe-inspiring event Banquet in a Field is, and what a treat to have been brought face-to-face with the farmers that grow the food that I eat. I certainly feel more aware and thankful to their contributions and blessed to have been given the opportunity to experience it. My thanks also goes to the lovely Katie Pinke, blog rock star and ag advocate.

August 4, 2015

As you may or may not know, I’m a bit of a couponer, and I’m always looking to save some cheddah when going out. That’s why when Chelsea pitched me a “free” theme for a future Tell Me About Your Town, I was totally down. The only thing better than getting something discounted is getting it free, and that goes for experiences too, my friends.

Whether it’s for date night, girls’ night or a me day, what things can you do in your town for nada? There are always some hidden gems to occupy your time without spending a dime. Does your town have any great parks or museums that don’t charge admission? Where are the best spots to people watch or window shop? Are there any fun experiences or things to see that people might not know about? Where would we go if we were strapped for cash?

Come back and join me and Chelsea on August 18 to share what amazing and totally free things there are to do in your town. Grab the button in the sidebar and join in the free fun in two weeks!

Guys, this is like the goldmine of travel blogging. I can’t wait to see what all I can do around the country, so link up and share! I’ll be pinning all posts for my own future (free) adventures.

Let me know if you want to co-host a future month in this series or be added to my monthly email reminder!

July 21, 2015

Holy cow you guys. Just last night I got back from a week away for my high school reunion and trip home. I’ll fill you in on how it went soon, but in the meantime, it’s time for another Tell Me About Your Town! In honor of just being in my birthplace and actual hometown, this month, I’m gonna tell you about South Bend, Indiana, instead of my current town of Fargo. (Disclaimer: My actual hometown is a teeny weeny town of 600 people in the country 10 miles south of South Bend, but because there’s like nothing there, I just consider my home area of South Bend my home, since that’s where we went to shop, dine and work anyway.)

Please join Melissa and me this month to share fun facts from your own town’s past! But first, about South Bend.

South Bend Fun Facts

South Bend is in northern Indiana, not even half an hour from the Michigan border. We can get to Chicago pretty quickly as well, and Ohio isn’t far to the East either. What I think is so unique about the state of Indiana is that those of us from the northern part don’t have accents and tend to identify with the Midwest way of life. The farther south you go, and especially so south of Indianapolis, they tend to have a Southern drawl much like Kentuckians and are more culturally similar to the south.

South Bend gets its name from its placement on the St. Joe River on its southernmost bend. That same river makes for a beautiful walk along what we call the East Race in downtown South Bend. We took our prom photos there because of the pretty trees that line the pathways along the river and gazebo. Many love to kayak there as well, though it is pretty choppy.

The Internet tells me (because I definitely don’t remember anything from history class; sorry Mr. Flowers!) that South Bend was first settled by Native Americans in the mid-1800s, primarily by the Potawatomi Tribe, which makes sense because our local zoo is the Potawatomi Zoo. Then fur traders moved in, the city was established, and the area became home to lots of manufacturing.

Notre Dame

notre damephoto credit: IMG_3292 via photopin (license)

The most obvious thing about South Bend is that we’re home to Notre Dame. And fandom is huuuge there. Notre Dame is the largest employer in the county and a major contributor to the local economy. The Catholic college was established in 1842 and was actually all male until 1972.

Fun fact: Even though I had no desire to attend Notre Dame, I do have a family tie to it! My grandfather was a baker for Notre Dame many moons ago. My mom even has some of his recipes from those days.

Also related to Notre Dame is the movie Rudy, which was actually shot in South Bend. My high school computer science teacher told us that he had a very minor part in the movie, so that is my claim to fame. Rumor has it that Sean Astin’s grandmother was in a nursing home in Walkerton, Indiana, which is a nearby town we would go to as well.

Studebaker

studebakerphoto credit: Studebaker 1 via photopin (license)

Because of its manufacturing roots and close vicinity to both Chicago and Detroit, South Bend became involved with the auto industry in its heyday. Studebaker was one of the area’s biggest corporations in the day. You may know Studebaker cars as those old school, shiny cars popular around the ’50s. They started by blacksmiths and first made wagons and buggies, but went on to make those famous bullet-nose cars, and even the vehicle that was used in the 1951 Muppets movie! The actual vehicle that Fozzie drove is now on display at the Studebaker Museum in South Bend, and we went to see it on our last trip home!

In the 1960s, Studebaker closed its plants in South Bend as the economy was starting to fall, and then that became a big downfall for the city. It’s been struggling since.

But the best thing about South Bend history is that I was born there almost 30 years ago! Haha.

Amanda Moments

What kind of history does your town have? Have you ever been to South Bend?

Next Month
Please join me again next month for the next installment of Tell Me About Your Town! The topic will be free things to do in your town, and my co-host will be Chelsea from The New Wifestyle. Mark your calendars and come back on August 18th to link up!

Let me know if you want to co-host a future month in this series or be added to my monthly email reminder!