Rensselaer Adventures

This blog reports events and interesting tidbits from Rensselaer, Indiana and the surrounding area.

Monday, July 25, 2016


The Fendig Gallery at the Carnegie Center has a new art exhibit that will run through Sept 9. Called "Cycles", it features art from four artists with connections to Rensselaer. You can read about the artists on the Prairie Art Council's website, here.

The reception for the exhibit was held on July 22 and had a large crowd.
 Many of the works on display are sculptures or ceramics. This large face greets visitors as they enter the gallery.
 If you go around the back, you see this.
 This would probably scare some of my grandkids.
This painting is titled, "After Birth Earth".
 This teapot is an upside down bird. One person suggested that it was a pelican. I objected that pelicans have webbed feet, so it could be a hummingbird. She was not persuaded.
Notice the table for the display. It and a number of other tables were specially made for this exhibit.

It is a fun exhibit, so check it out. The gallery is open from noon until 2:00 pm Monday through Friday.

PS: Rock The Arts festival is coming this week. The web page for the event, here, has video clips of all the musical groups that will be performing.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

End of a busy week

I made only two visits the the fair this year--it was hot and I had other things keeping me occupied.
This old road grader did not have any signs indicating how old it was. It may have been one of the older things on display in the Retired Iron barn.
 These old corn shellers on display in the Retired Iron barn were also very old. I was told that kids enjoyed them.
 Traveling on SR 114, I stopped to take a picture of the memorial to the Hanging Grove School that is under construction. It expected something a little smaller.
Rich's Cycle Solutions burned this week. The Thursday's Rensselaer Republican had details.
 The control building for the storm water treatment plant is getting walls. Lincoln Street is completely blocked with construction material.
 Part of the plant will be circular and the rebar for that part is on site.
 On Saturday TV Cable had a customer appreciation day. During it, Ted Filson, who founded the company was given a posthumous Sagamore of the Wabash award. It was accepted by his widow and son.
Recently the company changed the menu of options and some people at the event were updating what they were getting.

For several days this past week crop dusters were flying in and out of the airport, buzzing the town. They have moved on.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

The travels of Jasper

On July 19 the Commissioners met for a second time during the month in a meeting continued from their July 5 meeting. The primary purpose of the meeting was to prepare grant submissions to the State for road repairs. The consultant was late because of traffic, so they heard an update on Bicentennial preparations.

The most interesting bit of that discussion was the news that Jasper, the county bison, will not be able to attend the Touch of Dutch festival. He will be vacationing at the Indiana State Fair. The State Fair will have a display of 50 county bison and the bison are not allowed to leave the grounds during their stay. The thought was that this would expose Jasper County to a lot of people and because Jasper is impressively decorated, he might have a chance to win one of the two awards given, on by the panel of judges and the other the people’s choice award.
The bicentennial  group would like to buy some large flower pots to decorate the Court House steps and to paint some green benches blue. There was also some discussion of buying a trailer to transport the bison.

The grant application for roads will probably be submitted next week. Kevin Kelly, head of Jasper County Economic Development Organization, is trying to round up letters of support for the various projects--they add weight to the applications. One comment that I thought interesting is that now that the state has gotten the counties to inventory and rate their roads, they will be better able to micromanage what the counties are doing with maintenance.

The county fair came to Rensselaer on Tuesday night with the annual Retired Iron parade to the farmers market. This year the route went down Jackson Street because Lincoln is closed for construction of the storm water treatment plant.
I recently posted some pictures of the remodeling of Halas and Gallagher Halls at SJC. Below are two that show many of the stages of work. On the left below are the original facades, and then to the right give different stages of work.

Two additional stages are shown on Halas, which is further along in the remodeling.
I also posted a picture of work on a state-highway building. It is now getting is covering replaced.
The city has been doing line work on the utility poles. Below three bucket trucks are being used to replace a pole.
The Rensselaer Urban Forestry Council has planted trees along Angelica Street.

Monday, July 18, 2016

At the fair

The 2016 edition of the Jasper County Fair has arrived. On Sunday evening  the fairground received only light sprinkles of rain but those paying attention saw a beautiful rainbow as the rain retreated to the east.
 I was impressed with the decoration of the Jasper County buffalo. There was a lot of thought given to what should be on it and those painting it did a great job.
 One side featured some of the most recognizable landmarks of the county.
 The decoration was a collaborative effort.
 The Sunday free stage featured the band Nightshift.
 Also on Sunday, the Volunteer Fair sponsored by the Jasper Foundation occupied the Commercial Building.
 Earlier on Sunday I wanted to see what progress was being made on the National Gypsum addition. Nothing was above ground, though it seemed stone had been spread in preparation for a concrete slab. However, there was activity on the skeleton of the big building at the state highway department. This building usually has what appears to be a fabric or plastic exterior. There were workers doing something to the frame, but I could not tell what it was.
We got a lot of rain Sunday night and Monday morning. My rain gage had over three inches, though that included some from Sunday morning.
The rain flooded one of the pits at the construction site of the storm water plant. It must have some storm sewers that dump into it. The second pit did not have the water.
It is a bit hard to see the water through the fence. The "No Trespassing" signs are new--they went up late last week.

A lot of new building materials were being delivered to the site on Monday morning, though some may not be usable until the pit is drained.