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Trailblazing: The B&O Trail Continues to Grow

Writer / Christy Heitger-Ewing Back in the fall of 1992, Diana Virgil, an accountant by trade but a biking enthusiast at heart, attended a meeting in Speedway about abandoned railroad corridors. The meeting inspired her to get involved in creating a trail system for bikers, walkers and runners, and she began educating herself about the 65 miles of abandoned trails extending through Marion, Hendricks, Putnam and Parke counties. In 1994, Rail Corridor Development, Inc. (now B&O Trail Association, Inc. or BOTA) and Hendricks County Trail Development, Inc. (which Virgil and her husband, Hall, formed) combined forces to convert the former ...

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Q & A with Avon Town Council Member Marcus Turner

Where are you from? (Background, school, etc.) I was born in LaPorte, Indiana, but my family moved to the north side of Indianapolis when I was three. I attended North Central High School, then spent four years in Bloomington, Indiana attending Indiana University before returning to the Indy area. How long have you been on the Avon Town Council? This year is the beginning of my sixth year on the Town Council. I was first elected in 2012 and was re-elected for a second term in 2015. My involvement with the Town actually began in 2007 when I was appointed ...

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Ready, Aim, Fire: Parabellum Firearms & Indoor Range Offers Classes, Competitions

Writer / Christy Heitger-Ewing Though Joe Sellmer always had a long-term goal to open up a gun shop, it was his wife, Terry, who urged him to do it. Six years ago, when she was working for the Avon Police Department, civilians frequently came into the station requesting information on where to buy a gun and get training to use it. “Back then, Indianapolis was behind the curve in the gun market compared to a lot of cities,” Sellmer says. In May 2014, he opened Parabellum Firearms & Indoor Range in Avon — a shop that not only rents and ...

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Biz Academy Giving Back On and Off Stage

Writer / Melissa Gibson “There is richness and overwhelming acceptance in the wonderful people I’ve met, which is something I’ve always loved. Everyone is accepted,” says Craig Whitcombe, Director and co-owner of The Biz Academy in Avon, of theater.  Whitcombe’s partners, Jeff and Jan VanParis, are educators in the County and created the theater organization to develop and empower young actors, singers and dancers. The Biz offers a variety of classes and expertise to young thespians, perhaps most unique is the experiences offered behind the scenes. The “My Time to Shine” program, a program for children and adults with special ...

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Russell “Twister” Garrison: The Nicest Troublemaker You’ll Ever Meet

Writer / Christy Heitger-Ewing In Russell “Twister” Garrison’s 97 years, he’s been a husband, a father, a teacher, a mechanic, a Navy veteran, a district supervisor, a roller skater, a golfer, a philanthropist, a storyteller and a poet. Above all, he’s an inspiration. Garrison was born in a tiny Kentucky town that consisted of a general store, church and school. “We lived outside of Cane Valley,” Garrison says. “In fact, we lived so far out that when we went hunting, we had to come toward town.” He got the nickname “Twister” over eight decades ago when he was riding home ...

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Avon Junior Athletic Association to Host First ASK AJAA Golf Outing

Event will support the Athletic Scholarships for Kids program. Writer / Jarod Turner In 1963, Avon was nothing more than a region between Plainfield and Brownsburg that had a one-year old School Corporation. As this area got its own school, it started becoming its own community. The Avon Junior Baseball Association became just the second non-profit organization in the area that bore the name Avon. It was started with the help of the Avon Optimist Club, which started in 1959. Games were played where else, but right off of Highway 36. There were fields where the current Harlan Bakery and ...

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The Flip Zone Partners With Special Olympics Indiana

Gymnastics facility is creating programs for kids with special needs. Writer / Heather Chastain A Hendricks County gymnastics facility is making a difference in the lives of kids with special needs. The Flip Zone in Plainfield, in conjunction with Special Olympics Indiana, has created programs designed to help those with autism, cerebral palsy and down syndrome. Owner Stephanie Strout says working with the Special Olympics was important to her. “Gymnastics used to be a big part of the Special Olympics and it kind of died off, so I wanted to help bring it back,” she says. The students participate in ...

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Business Spotlight: Fu Yuan

Writer / Heather Chastain The newest, most elegant buffet in Hendricks County has made its home in Plainfield. Fu Yuan, which means blessing in Chinese, just opened its doors on Main Street. It’s located in the shopping plaza in front of Metropolis Mall.  Fu Yuan’s buffet boasts more than 200 menu items, rotating monthly. “Our main courses include prime rib, crab legs, a sushi bar and teppanyaki grill,” says Manager Tommy Lin. “A chef will cook your food right in front of you.” Fu Yuan’s owner has 40 years of experience in the restaurant industry and has travelled all over ...

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Hendricks Regional Health YMCA: 
A Gathering Place for Fun, Fitness and Friendships

Writer / Christy Heitger-Ewing Chuck and Carolyn Culp were dealt a double whammy when they were both diagnosed with cancer. Thankfully, both conquered the disease, though surgeries and treatments took their toll on the couple’s bodies, leaving them wobbly and weak. Motivated to achieve optimal health, two years ago they joined the LIVESTRONG program offered through the Hendricks Regional Health YMCA, designed to empower cancer survivors by improving their muscle mass and strength. The program improved their stamina and stability, reduced their waistlines and weight, and increased their energy and enthusiasm for physical fitness. Eager to continue in their health ...

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Taking Flight: Locals Get Their Wings at Hendricks County Aviation

Writer / Christy Heitger-Ewing Last year Chris Johnson, owner of Nature’s Choice Landscaping in Brownsburg, took ownership of Hendricks County Aviation, a flight school on the edge of Avon that opened in 2005. Hendricks County Aviation may be the area’s best kept secret. Not that it’s meant to be, but given that it’s somewhat concealed from public view (the runway ends just south of Rockville Road but is hidden by trees and railroad tracks), not everyone knows it exists.  Johnson has been involved in aviation most of his life, having moved in 1998 from the West coast to Avon for ...

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