Joe Bonamassa at Fort Wayne’s Embassy Theatre

Hey, guitar fans – get ready to plagiarize new licks on your axe. Blues-rock artist Joe Bonamassa is coming to the Fort at 8:00 p.m. Monday, November 17, 2014.

Joe Bonamassa VFW.0021 Joe Bonamassa at Fort Waynes Embassy Theatre

Look to the Embassy Theatre to lay down the red carpet for the superstar who said, “I’ve really had to push myself to make everything I do better than the last project. I know the fans expect it and I feel like I owe it to the fans to give them an original record after all these years.”

And his latest gorgeous album, “Different Shades of Blue” is worthy of a fall-on-your-knees drum roll. Released September 23, it is his first solo studio album in two years with all original music. Check out “Never Give All of Your Heart,” “Hey Baby (New Rising Sun),” “Trouble Town” and more outstanding songs on the album.

This dude has been playing guitar since toddlerhood. His father bought him his first electric guitar when he was 5 years old, and he opened for BB King when he was only 12. That first gig began his outstanding professional career and currently, he has 12 #1 Billboard Blues albums to his name.

GRAMMY-nominated Bonamassa, who has recorded a plethora of albums since 2000, plays approximately 125 shows a year, and has a collection of guitars – standing at 175 at the time of this writing. When he went on his first Australian tour, almost 30 of his instruments – both acoustic and electric – traveled with him. One of his collector guitars, his first 1959 Les Paul, has been nicknamed “Magellan” because it, “circumnavigated the globe,” said Bonamassa, who has at least 200 amps in his music instrument collection.

Come and experience one of the greatest guitarists of today’s blues /rock world – this is ear candy at its best! Ticket prices are $99, $89, $79 and $69 and tickets are on sale at the Embassy Theater (124 W. Jefferson Blvd, 46802) box office or call 260-424-5665. Or order from www.Ticketmaster.com or call 1-800-745-3000.

Barb

About

Barb Sieminski is a freelance writer and photographer for several magazines and newspapers. She received her B.A. and M.S. in art and English, from the University of St. Francis. When not chained to the computer, she follows her passion of fishing, believing that all good things come to she who baits . . .

Salomon Fall Harvest Festival

IMG 6767 300x225 Salomon Fall Harvest Festival

Autumn has finally arrived, bringing all the beautiful bounties of the harvest season! What better way to celebrate this time of year than with local fall festivals? The Salomon Fall Harvest Festival is a free, fun-filled weekend ideal for families. Come to Salomon Farm Park October 3-4 to learn about the history and culture of the American farm.

IMG 6765 300x225 Salomon Fall Harvest Festival

From 10 am to 5 pm Friday and Saturday, families can visit with live animals, participate in corn husking and oat/wheat threshing demonstrations, enjoy hayrides and yummy concessions, and see antique farm equipment displays.

IMG 6763 300x225 Salomon Fall Harvest Festival

Saturday’s fun includes a tractor parade and farmers market, where you can shop local goods from area farmers and artisans. And the kids will surely enjoy a step into rural farm life with a chance to make their own butter and milk cows.

This festival is great for families with kids of all ages to enjoy. Bring everyone to the Salomon Harvest Festival for a perfect autumn weekend filled with fall fun activities!

Free admission!

817 West Dupont Road
Friday, October 3, 2014
Saturday, October 4, 2014
10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.

Learn more here!

Deb

About

Born and raised in Indianapolis, almost nothing could move this downtown girl from her native Circle City—except true love. Deb now calls Fort Wayne home, and lives with her husband and their three amazing children in a cozy north side neighborhood. Armed with a Master’s in English, Deb was an editor for Northern Indiana LAKES Magazine, and a copywriter and proofreader for a local marketing and design firm. An avid reader, nature enthusiast, and amateur gourmet, she also loves to take walks and hikes with her family.

My Fort Wayne Favorite – Lions Park

Folks who live in Fort Wayne, Indiana, have a lot to be proud of, not the least of which is our amazing park system. My favorite park – and honestly, my favorite place in the city – is Lions Park. One of the city’s many neighborhood parks, you can find it at the intersection of Carew Street and Hazelwood Avenue, not far from Coliseum Boulevard. It’s a suburban oasis of fields, trees, and a lot of great memories.

Lions1 My Fort Wayne Favorite   Lions Park

Lions Park was a two-minute bike ride from the house I grew up in, so you can imagine I spent a lot of time there as a kid. My first real memory of the park is from a kindergarten field trip my class took there. It was a gloomy day, much like the day I’m writing this post, and I remember riding the merry-go-round and then…not. Yup, I fell off and got caught underneath. Luckily, I wasn’t hurt, so this can stay filed under (relatively) good memories.

Lions4 My Fort Wayne Favorite   Lions Park

As I got older, I still spent a lot of time at Lions Park. My friend Kyle and I would spend hours there in high school, listening to R.E.M. and Counting Crows and talking about comics and video games and zombies. When I told my wife I was going to write this post, she reminded me we had our first non-date there (I was actually interested in her friend), and I remember someone getting smacked by a tree limb (one of the girls, if memory serves). Even into college, my friends and I hung out there, usually after dark, even though the park closed at dusk (I was a rebel, I know). It was a quiet place we could all just sit and talk.

Today, I work close by and often take my lunch at the park. I can always head over after work, too, to shoot some hoops or practice my tennis swing.

Lions8 My Fort Wayne Favorite   Lions Park

What else is there to do at Lions Park? There’s a baseball diamond where I’ve played a bunch of softball games. There’s a playground with lots of things for kids to do. There’s a pavilion for picnics, family reunions, and work outings. And if you’re a pickleball fan, there are now four courts on which to play.

Lions Park is one of the many great places to play and relax in Fort Wayne. For more information on this and all of Fort Wayne’s parks, including special events held all over the city, check out www.fortwayneparks.org.

Mike

About

Apart from spending his college years in West Lafayette, Indiana, and Dayton, Ohio, Mike Flohr is a lifetime resident of the Summit City. Today he divides his time among his wife, Megan, his job as a college librarian, and his many geek obsessions.

Highly Recommended Women-Owned Businesses in Fort Wayne

Recently, I’ve decided to branch out on my own as a full-time business consultant. In my research on the logistics of running my own business, I wasn’t at all surprised to discover that most new businesses in the U.S. today are owned and operated by women.

I really enjoy lending support to all locally-owned businesses in Fort Wayne. It just so happens that some of my favorite spots are women-owned.

Reasons Why Women-Owned Businesses Thrive

Based on my research, I believe that this current swell of women-owned businesses in Fort Wayne can be mainly attributed to 5 reasons:

  1. Costs of doing business have dropped.
  2. More women are attending and graduating from local career-focused colleges, like Purdue who offers excellent career services.
  3. The idea of work-from-home suits many women just fine.
  4. Digital marketing, digital coupons and discounts, and social media benefits. Advancements in these areas have considerably reduced costs of traditional advertising and women tend to be naturals at these “word-of-mouth” strategies for offering and promoting great deals.
  5. Use of technology in lending has lowered cost and quickened the process of getting capital.

A Trifecta of Woman-Owned Fort Wayne Businesses

Fort Wayne has several successful women that I am pulling inspiration from to build my own business model after:

K Monique 150x150 Highly Recommended Women Owned Businesses in Fort Wayne

K Monique’s Dance Studio (6336 West Jefferson Boulevard)– Now in her 13th year as a dance instructor, studio owner Kristin Thompson has been described by her more than 250 dance students and 400 fitness members as a woman with a “strong will and desire to succeed.” From recreational fitness classes like Zumba and Piloxing to competitive instruction on a variety of styles such as modern dance and ballet, K Monique’s has something for everyone from age 3 and up.

Local tip: The annual showcase at the United Arts Center in June is your chance to catch all the action. Although if you can’t wait that long, you may catch a surprise flash mob from time to time.

Paulas on Main 300x111 Highly Recommended Women Owned Businesses in Fort Wayne

Paula’s On Main (1732 W. Main St.)– This Fort Wayne staple for the some of the best seafood in town has been around for almost 2 decades. Behind the scenes, there’s been more than the catfish frying in the kitchen. A sorted and complex court case that went all the way to the Supreme Court was finally settled recently with ownership in the trusting hands of Paula Phillips.

Local tip: Exotic catches like Mako Shark and Arctic Char are posted on Paula’s Facebook page daily.

Pranayoga 300x107 Highly Recommended Women Owned Businesses in Fort Wayne

Pranayoga Institute of Yoga and Holistic Health (1301 Lafayette Street) – Not all organizations were created for profit. In 2009, foundation director, Dani McGuire, started a yoga center in Fort Wayne that provides wellness and healing for cancer patients and sufferers of chronic pain. Dani and her caring team at Pranayoga are true inspirations for those of us that want to make a difference and have a positive impact on people’s lives.

Local tip: Sign up for one of the local retreats – sure to be an enlightening and rejuvenating experience.

So, What Are These Women Doing Right?

The truth is that there is no shortcut to business success. We all must wake up early each morning and work hard through the day and sometimes into the night. It’s common to say we must work harder to achieve greater business success. In many ways that’s true, but it’s not the sum of our experience.

The following business best practices are common with successful women who are also business owners and are great tips for any aspiring entrepreneur:

  • Telling others your success story and reaching out to other women
  • Launching your social business
  • Choosing the right pathways to scaling
  • Planning for transition and success
  • Reaching out to corporations
  • Finding sustainable income streams
  • Recruiting, developing, and retaining the best talent

So whether you’re starting your own business like me or a seasoned veteran, it’s always important to do what you love and look to those that are getting it done right. Both men and women have come a long way in the work force and come to respect and appreciate each other’s contributions over the years. And with today’s technology, you can simply log in from virtually anywhere and work from the comfort of your own home and still have time to enjoy all of the fun festivities in Fort Wayne.

Kaila Strong

About

Kaila is a technology blogger and active online as a writer for over ten years. Her passions include technology, business, travel and much more. She has fond memories of Fort Wayne, spending summers with her grandmother as a child and is also a continued supporter of local businesses in the area.

Gyms for Visitors: Workout While On The Road

I know how frustrating it can be when you’re traveling and you can’t find a gym that will let you work out in their facility for an hour or two. Unless, of course the they get to charge you an exorbitant price. I’m here to help! There are a few gym options for those passing through or visiting Fort Wayne that are reasonably priced and have great equipment and space.

Spiece Fitness – The facility is huge! What I like most about this facility is sheer number of machines and weights available. In the weight area, there are machines and free weights to use. The best part about that area is that there are multiples of most machines and more benches than people at any time. The space between the benches and machines doesn’t make you squeeze around people like you’re trying to get a drink at a bar. I often feel like gyms try to fit too many machines/benches/weights into an itty-bitty workout space and create an awkward, sweaty, smelly situation. The cardio machines are extremely numerous as well. There is also a running track, though it isn’t as wide as I prefer, making it difficult to pass other people. The sport shop has nice items, name brands and all that jazz, but it is kind of expensive. There is even some pretty good space for those who enjoy cross-fit training. Really, the best part about this facility is the sheer magnitude of the space and number of machines to use.
• 5310 Merchandise Dr. Fort Wayne, IN 46825
• $5 a day if you attend with a member
• $15 a day if you visit alone
• Hours: Mon.-Thurs. 5am-10pm, Fri. 5am-9pm, Sat. 7am-7pm, Sun. 8am-6pm

Anytime Fitness – There are 7 Anytime Fitness locations around Fort Wayne. This makes it more accessible than other gyms in the area. Being a member of Anytime Fitness gives me a great advantage because there are gyms all over the country. Anytime Fitness definitely has smaller facilities than other gyms I’ve visited so far. Even though the facilities are smaller, they have at least one of each machine and treadmills, ellipticals and some stationary bikes. Because members can access the gym 24 hours a day, I rarely find the facilities crowded. My husband and I often share the whole facility with maybe 4-5 other people. The Anytime Fitness owners know how to efficiently use the space and have open rooms for classes and cross-fit training. Each Anytime Fitness location is slightly different, with varying machines and classes. To find the local locations and see the equipment and classes specific to each location, visit http://anytimefitness.com/find-gym.
• Hours of operation are different for each Anytime Fitness, they can be found on each facilities website
• $5 a day for non-members, regardless of whether they visit with a member or not

Maxx Fitness – Maxx Fitness has three separate facilities around Fort Wayne. I have found that their gyms are somewhat more limited in their capacity. I know the southwest location has added on a room for classes and cross-fit type training. The Maxx Fitness gyms have two different membership packages. The first level gets the member in during staffed hours only. The next level of membership affords the member 24/7 access. Because of these two different price levels, I tend to find the Maxx Fitness gyms crowded during the regular hours. Even when it’s crowded, the staff is always friendly and available to help you with any gym/workout question you may have. Each of the Maxx Fitness locations is similar in layout, machines, and policies to the other facilities. The staffed hours at Maxx Fitness gyms are the same from gym to gym as well and are longer than Anytime, but shorter than Spiece. You can find the three Fort Wayne locations at http://www.joinmaxfitness.com/fortwayne/.
• $5 per day for non-members, whether they attend with a member or not
• Hours: Mon.-Fri. 8am-8pm, Sat.-Sun. 7am-7pm

There are, of course, other options around Fort Wayne, but from experience, these are the most cost effective for what you get at the facility. If you are just looking for a good lift and some sweating or to pump up your heart rate doing some cardio, I definitely recommend Anytime or Maxx Fitness. If you plan to spend several hours in the facility (and you definitely could) Spiece is definitely my recommendation. Wherever you choose to workout, you can’t really go wrong at one of these three gyms. Enjoy!

Holly Perry

About

Holly moved to the Fort Wayne area in 2012 and have enjoyed exploring all of the nifty "things-to-do" around the city! She is an aspiring writer and is currently working on her first novel. Holly lives with her husband, two crazy cats, a bearded dragon, and a ball python. She enjoys exercise in all forms and setting out on adventures during the day, then reads anything and everything she can get her hands on all night!