“Little” reasons to be thankful to live, work and play in Noble County.
Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things.

At this time of year, we tend to slow down. We visit with friends and family, sometimes taking us “back home again.” Sometimes we create traditions within a new community we’ve joined. Often, we cling to our favorite traditions, like cherished and familiar foods, music, events, and activities. Hot apple cider always makes my favorites list!

If you find yourself in Noble County this holiday season, this blog is for you!

My family’s traditions inspire cozy thoughts at this time of year. Those ideas led me to “count my blessings” and to name them “one by one,” as the song goes. I began to think of why I am thankful for Noble County and became overwhelmed with joy at the thoughts. So I started to ask others, “Why are you thankful for Noble County?”. Their thoughts and photos are what we share in this Thanksgiving blog. Happy Thanksgiving!

1. Grace Caswell is thankful for a “Noble” quality of life that attracts locals and visitors.

“I am so thankful I relocated to Indiana! I wasn’t born here; I am a Hoosier by choice. In 2019, I had the decision to make. I could entice my then-fiancé, now husband, Nik, to move to Michigan with me or go on an adventure and move to Northeast Indiana. I expected to find cornfields, barns, and maybe a few good-paying jobs. But I struck gold and didn’t know it yet! I found more than I thought possible, both personally and professionally. Noble County offers a great quality of life, education, recreation opportunities, and award-winning attractions. Whether visiting alone or staying with the family, you are rejuvenated here. Nik and I found 117 lakes, nature preserves, a picture-perfect courthouse, thriving downtowns, festivals/fairs, over 40 murals, a historic theater, a state park, a state historic Site, a Windmill Museum, miles of trails, cozy coffee houses, and yes, beautiful farmland, and great careers in Noble County!” – Grace Caswell.

2. Janet Sweeney is thankful for a generous and collaborative spirit.

Janet Sweeny, Board Secretary of the Stone’s Trace Historical Society, shares her gratitude for collaboration and community pride.

 “We are thankful for the cooperation between West Noble School Corporation and Stone’s Trace Historical Society. They provide parking for our festival and are willing for us to request student volunteers to work at the festival. Students are given credit hours for community service for their work. West Noble also provides buses for transportation for our visitors. We cannot give enough thanks to them.” – Janet Sweeney.

3. Kristen Johnson appreciates communities that support growing families.

Echoing Janet’s appreciation, Kristen Johnson, Main Street Manager of Historic Downtown Kendallville, expresses her love of a small, connected, and safe community that supports growing families with events and activities including the annual Fairy, Gnome, and Troll Festival.

“I am thankful to live in a small, extremely generous community of people who care for one another and can be counted on to support the many initiatives which make Noble County a wonderful place to raise a family.” – Kristen Johnson.

4. Angie Kidd is thankful for nature, like that of her childhood home in southern Noble County.

Pastor Angie Kidd of Common Grace Ministries shares her thankfulness and fondness for beautiful landscapes and the natural beauty of Wilmot, IN.

“Last year, I celebrated my birthday by returning to the land I grew up on for the first time in 40 years. As my husband and I walked around the ponds and through the trees reclaimed by nature, memories of my childhood in that beautiful place rushed back like wind through the pines my granddad’s hands planted. Lily pads cover the pond, and the cranes were enjoying the stock ponds my grandad used to raise minnows for the fishing ponds on the Tri-County Game Preserve. I couldn’t resist getting down on my hands and knees to drink straight from the ice-cold flowing well that had been flowing since long before I was born. Whispering Springs Water is bottled at the source on this land in southern Noble County, on CR W 350 S, just south of Wilmot off State Road 5. The Wilmot Mill is still standing and is a great photo opportunity if you love rustic buildings and water wheels. While our homestead is not open to the public, the Tri-County Game preserve is, and I spent many hours on the trails there as a kid. Just a little south of W 350 S is CR E 350 N. A right-hand turn will take you to the Pisgah Marsh Boardwalk and the marshland that bordered the property where I grew up. While it is technically in Kosciusko County by a few feet, this is a place you don’t want to miss if you are exploring the natural world in southern Noble County. Now is the time to visit while the trees are sporting their fall colors!” – Rev. Angie Kidd.

5. John Lipasek is thankful for “Fall’s Kiss.”

“Each of our four seasons is here one minute and gone the next leaving a brief reminder that they existed at all. Fall is no different from Winter, Spring, and Summer. What makes fall unique is its kiss. Fall’s kiss on the trees makes them blush in colors not seen in any other season; reds, yellows, oranges, and browns abound. This tells me that fall has arrived for the trees because, as if in a trance, they prepare to sleep, laying a carpet of leaves at their feet to help keep them snug and warm.

Fall’s kiss on the lakes shows up in exciting ways. One of them is the “dragon’s breath” upon the waters, which inhibits one’s visibility to see. The waters are cooling in preparation for winter. While I stand on my dock admiring this spectacle, Jack Frost, is there to remind me that he is alive by the tingle in my ears. Fall’s kiss on our feathered friends is another marvel. They are migrating now, introducing a person to species not typically seen in their area. They stop to feed and rest but only briefly, preparing to continue to a place known to them. How far they travel is a marvel.

Fall’s kiss on the land tells the land that it is time to relax; your work is done for this year. Plants and animals feel Fall’s kiss and prepare for winter by taking in as many nutrients as possible before Old Man Winter arrives. The plants now live underground, giving up their flowers to Fall. They wait for next spring and summer to begin anew. Mammals and amphibians will eat until they seem to burst, knowing that Old Man Winter is not their friend. Fall’s kiss on humanity takes many forms, but all adapt as best they can. Some prepare to migrate south while others continue to live their everyday lives. Most people do not stop to marvel at Fall, which is unfortunate because they miss the beauty of Fall’s kiss.” – John Lipasek.

6. Many residents appreciate beautiful libraries, including the Kendallville Public Library.

Photo of the Kendallville Public Library by Jeremy Streb, a resident of Kendallville.

Too many individuals to name are thankful for the beautiful public libraries in Noble County. We encourage you to stop by the Kendallville Public Library to enjoy the many programs and adventures waiting to be had! Guests may reserve rooms for parties or meetings at all library locations. The library offers a variety of family-friendly activities, learning experiences, and unique activities that engage the whole community. Elevators allow anyone to explore every aspect of the library. Accessible parking is near each entrance, and aisles are spacious for wheelchair access. Take a walk, go on an adventure! The Kendallville Public Library’s Adventure Walks take you on a stroll through Kendallville and Rome City. While walking, you’ll read a story or complete various activities.

Take a walk; go on an adventure! The Kendallville Public Library’s Adventure Walks take you on a stroll through Kendallville and Rome City. While walking, you’ll read a story or complete various activities.

Some of the upcoming Adventure Walk stories and activities include:

  • Everything I Need to Know I Learned from a Little Golden Book by Diane Muldrow (in November)
  • The Office: The Official Party Planning Guide to Planning Parties (in December)

The adventure Walk in Kendallville has 18 stations starting at the front of the Kendallville Public Library, then continuing around the library through Bixler Lake Park. View a map of the Kendallville Adventure Walk here!

Learn more about Noble County’s libraries:
Kendallville Public Library at 260-343-2010
Ligonier Public Library at 260- 894-4511
Limberlost Library in Rome City at 260-854-2775
Noble County Public Library (Albion) at 260-636-7197
Noble County Public Library (Avilla) at 260-897-3900
Noble County Public Library (Cromwell) at 260-856-2119

7. Lori Gagen is thankful for thriving entrepreneurs and residents who supports them.

Community members gather frequently at The Fox Den in Albion to enjoy live music and pop-up shops featuring local talents. Photo by Lori Gagen, Operations Director for Be Noble Inc., the county’s local economic development organization.

“We are blessed to have, in Noble County, hundreds of locally-owned small businesses that not only support our economy but also enhance our quality of life. From funky and unique coffee shops to a corn hole and sand volleyball venue, Indiana’s oldest continuously operating theatre, and unique clothing boutiques, these small businesses are beloved! One of the greatest things that happened when the COVID-19 pandemic struck was the launch of SHOPNobleIN.com, a website featuring a “shop local” directory that helps people find and support our small business community. Residents and other businesses made conscious choices during and since the pandemic to shop, eat, and hire locally. I cannot think of another place of our size and population blessed with so many unique and thriving small businesses. The people who own and operate them live here, too.  They are proud, friendly, and a great asset to Noble County!” – Lori Gagen.