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Dittmann: Paddling is still in season

Labor Day weekend traditionally marks the end of the beach season, but it doesn’t mean the end of events on the water. The Northwest Indiana Paddling Association (NWIPA) keeps paddling as summer streams into fall and welcomes those with experience, or even an interest in …

Dittmann: Time travel seems possible this weekend

This weekend, you can drive a little to travel a lot — far back in time, that is, at two historical re-enactment events. Experience Native American times to the 1930s at the Aukiki River Festival near Kouts, and have Renaissance-period fun at the Michiana Renaissance …

Dittmann: Night events get a glowing review

A garden or an arboretum can be a lovely place to visit during the day, but what about after the sun goes down and the lush greens look black, the blossoms fade to grays, and the squirrels and songbirds retreat? The folks at Taltree Arboretum …

Dittmann: Stars are the stars of the show this week

Eyes will be looking to the night skies over the upcoming week for the Perseid meteor shower, with several stellar opportunities to watch and learn more at local stargazing events. “Every year there are several predictable meteorite showers. The Perseid is usually one of the …

Dittmann: Music makes its mark locally

From park hillsides to unique little venues, there is a lot of good music to hear locally, even more so in the summer. A few musical high notes this weekend include a symphonic celebration, an impressive competition of music on the move, and film blended …

Take a vacation at the movies

Two very different kinds of adventures await in South Bend this week: one through a children’s international film festival; the other through a bike ride to challenges across the city and surrounding area. A passport to creativity and experiences from around the world, and even …

Dittmann: Peru circus fest tough to top

In most places, the circus just comes to town. Not in downstate Peru. There, the town celebrates its long and colorful circus history and annually produces an impressive circus in which all of the performers are local youths. This week, that circus activity culminates with …

Dittmann: Getting that sinking feeling can be fun

Cardboard and duct tape plus creativity equals an event that makes a big splash with participants and spectators alike: the Cardboard Boat Dash. This year’s is slated for Saturday at the Washington Park Marina in Michigan City. Thirty-two cardboard creations entered the 2013 event, according …

Dittmann: These aren’t humdrum music fests

Unplug the electronics and plug into some good live music this weekend at family-friendly events coming to Northwest Indiana: the Lightning Bug Music Festival, with a variety of music and children’s activities and which is for a good cause; and the Big Show, blending booming …

Make some waves, have some fun

Although summer is heating up, lake temperatures are still chilly. Instead of being cold in the water, try a cool activity on the water. Sailing lessons, joining a crew on a sailboat, kayaking and even whitewater rafting are just some on-the-water possibilities nearby in northwest …

These summer fests are nods to history

History will combine with old-fashioned fun at a couple of local events on Saturday: the Midsummer Celebration and summer solstice evening concert at Chellberg Farm, and the Portage Community Historical Society’s Summer Festival. *** Saturday is the summer solstice, the longest day of the year. …

A Shakespearean summer is upon us

Shakespeare will be all over northwest Indiana this summer: indoors and outdoors, in a garden and even by the beach. So whether you are a longtime fan, eager for an introduction to his works for children, looking for a unique outing or even a freebie, …

Paddle event takes Hawaiian spin

Dust off your favorite Hawaiian shirt and join the Northwest Indiana Paddling Association for a luau-themed paddle to kick off the season at Sunday’s eighth annual Trail Creek Fun Float, a paddling excursion of up to six miles starting at the Michigan City Marina in …

Orangutans in our midst (well, not far, anyway)

Indianapolis offers so much to do on a visit, and now add the International Orangutan Center at the Indianapolis Zoo, with an opportunity for visitors to get face to face with members of one of the most endangered species on Earth. The Simon Skjodt International …

Explore the wonders of Wolf Lake

Wolf Lake is at the boundary between Indiana and Illinois and the intersection of urban life and industry with water sports and ecology. The lake and its shores long have been a location for a broad range of endeavors, from wind surfing to hosting a …

Luge experience for kids this weekend in Illinois

Although our winter finally is over, there is a cool opportunity for youngsters ages 9 to 13 to get a taste of a winter Olympic sport on Saturday and Sunday as the USA Luge Slider Search makes its only Midwest stop this year in the …

Bird-watching takes center stage

It seems rather unusual seeing a person walk down the road with binoculars around their neck, but then again this is spring, so it’s bird-migration time. And birds — along with bird watchers with binoculars, spotting scopes and tripods — are flocking to the dunes, …