Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Wabash is Worth Exploring

Originally published on the Chicago Moms

If you’re looking for a new place for a long weekend, take a look at Wabash, Indiana. It’s an easy 2.5 – 3 hour drive from most suburbs, with plenty of distractions along the way. We just spent four fun days in Wabash. I have to admit we hadn’t thought of Wabash as a road trip destination until the Charley Creek Inn ran a Groupon offer. My husband said, “I’ve heard this is nice. We should go.” So we did.


The Charley Creek Inn was wonderful. It was recently renovated. We splurged on a one bedroom suite, which has a stocked mini-kitchen with a microwave, fridge and Keurig. We brought cereal and juice for breakfast, picking up a gallon of milk at the convenience store across the street. It was a good option for us as our girls are only 8 years old. They don’t want more than a little cereal for breakfast. The area restaurants provided enough food at each meal for us to enjoy leftovers for our last dinner.

When you drive into Wabash you might not realize everything available to keep you busy. In a charming touch, the Wabash Visitors Center left a welcome packet for us at the front desk. There was detailed information about everything from concerts to a walking paths to historic sites to gardens. We looked through the packet and picked a few things to do, including walking the Charley Creek Gardens. This path doesn’t seem like it will take very long until you start down the path. With a maze, labyrinth, wildflower garden, waterfall and sculptures, it’s a wonderful, shaded way to spend a couple of hours.

We also enjoyed the Wabash County Historical Museum. As the tourism director said to our girls, “It’s fun. It’s not a snoozer museum.” It’s very nicely put together with rotating and permanent exhibits. The current feature exhibit honors WWII veterans. Our girls caught all the details we took for granted. At one point they pointed at this tall black thing and said, “What’s that?” I replied, “A telephone from the 1940s.” We then talked about how you made a phone call without pressing buttons. They were fascinated when they say another display with a rotary dial phone. A few minutes later they wanted to know about the typewriter. There are several interactive exhibits on the second floor, including a scooter tour of the area.

The Honeywell Center brings national artists to perform and offers free outdoor concerts. There is an art gallery and restaurant we visited for lunch. If I had planned better, we could have gone to the Savion Glover show. We did luck out and ended up taking advantage of the Eagles Theater directly across the street from the Charley Creek Inn. We had fun at free movie night Monday.

The next time we visit we’ll venture outside Wabash a bit more. There are charming towns in the area such as North Manchester, Lagro, Urbana and Roann. In each place we found several things we could do. We also found a u-pick orchard about 30 minutes outside Wabash. the Wabash County Convention and Visitors Bureau has a full listing of activities and events.

If you’re looking for some place new that will keep everyone entertained, visit Wabash. It’s a trip worth making.

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