snowy trails on our extensive property
on the porch of the cabin at Lena Park
treefrog at Lena Park

best nearby attractions - updated january 2007

fun things to do

Bailey's and Toto Bargain Village

Anchored by sprawling Bailey's Discount Center just a two minute drive from the cabin. For many of our regulars, a trip to Bailey's and the rest of Toto is 'standard operating procedure'. Toto is a genuine Hoosier shopping adventure, check out their website.

Float the beautiful Tippecanoe

Tecumseh could have picked any river in the old Norhwest Territory to make his home, he picked the Tippecanoe -- find out why. The cabin is a short drive to one of the Tippey's most unspoiled reaches - why not rent a canoe or kayak and explore it yourself? For boat rentals we recommend Winamac's Riverside Rentals on the Tippecanoe River, about a twenty minute drive. (574) 946-3142.

Hoosier Valley Rail Museum

Hoosier Valley Rail Museum excursion train - 2007See repair and restoration work on locomotives, rail cars, and railroad equipment. Over 30 pieces of rolling stock, including the 1947 C&O "Kanawha" steam locomotive #2789 and a rare E.M.D. Diesel. Depot Museum and gift shop with tee shirts, etc. On Saturdays in warm weather try one of their popular train rides, including the opportunity to ride in an open car through Kankakee River countryside. 507 Mulberry Street, North Judson. 574.223.3834. Find out more at their website.

Melody Drive-In Theater

One of the best maintained and operated Drive-In Theaters you'll ever find, located on US 35 south of its intersection with Indiana 10, near Bass Lake, this place is a real gem. Two screens, usually a double feature at both. Movies start at dusk, in season. 574.772.2042, or check out what's playing at melodydrivein.com.

Chesapeake Run Golf Course

Championship quality 18 hole course adjacent to our property. Scott Roudebush's design for this course brings the beauty of Indiana's sand country to the golfing public. No fields, no power lines, no highways, just beautiful rolling, wooded countryside. Clubhouse and banquet facilities. 6430 Co.Rd.250 W. North Judson. 574.896.2424, or visit their website.

We've selected some the best bets among the attractions within a few minutes of the cabin at Lena Park. Scroll down for stores, restaurants and watering holes.

Bass Lake and Lake Maxinkuckee

Two of Indiana's largest natural lakes are located nearby. Six miles to the east find lots of activities at Indiana's fourth largest natural lake, Bass Lake (originally Lake Winchetonqua) including a beach (with lifeguards in season), public access, fishing, skiing, and restaurants and taverns. Continue a few minutes further east and visit Indiana's second largest natural lake, beautiful Lake Maxinkuckee, known for its sparkling blue waters and Culver Academy, home of the black horse troop. In the quaint town of Culver on the shores of Lake Maxinkuckee you'll find a surpising range of choices for fine dining - ask us for a recommendation!

Kersting's Cycle Center and Museum

About five minutes to the west visit the 'little shop in the middle of nowhere where wonderful people come from everywhere' a must for the motorcycle enthusiast - Harleys, Yamahas, Excelsior-Hendersons, and Kawasakis. Gear, clothing, bikes, museum with a world class collection of vintage motorcycles. Just off Indiana state road 39, five minutes south of North Judson. 8774 W. 700 Winamac, 574.896.2974 website.

Mint Fest 2002 at Norwayne Park in North Judson
Above, a crowd enjoys the free music festival in the natural amphitheatre at historic Norwayne Park during the 2002 edition of North Judson's Mint Festival, held annually on Father's Day weekend. With less than 2000 population, North Judson offers more services and shopping than most villages its size, and retains its small town charm. It's located about 5 minutes west of Lena Park on Indiana 10.

nature - parks and preserves

RIVER links

The Nature Conservancy's Tippecanoe River Project.

Official info about Tippecanoe River State Park.

SANDHILL CRANE links

The Indiana Dept. of Natural Resources Sandhill Cranes page.

Information about sandhill cranes from the Saving Cranes Organization.

From the cabin at Lena Park it's less than ten miles to three of northern Indiana's largest preserves, adding up to nearly 20,000 acres of public land to explore and enjoy -- the close proximity of these big preserves is one reason you'll see so much wildlife at Lena Park. If this sounds like hype, check out the map! Not only are these preserves close, but because paved, lightly used roads lead to all of them, you can easily opt to go on your bicycle, and leave your car at the cabin; you'll find lots of bucolic scenery (and nary a strip mall) en route.

Tippecanoe River State Park/Winamac Game Preserve

Excellent canoeing on the scenic Tippecanoe River; horseback riding, bicycling, hiking and nature study. This is considered the most under used state park in Indiana, so expect to find solitude as well as natural beauty. With good water quality owing to its headwaters in deep natural lakes the Tippy is one of the finest in the Midwest - The Nature Conservancy considers it one of the ten most important rivers in the nation in terms of biodiversity. Hunting is available in adjacent Winamac Game Preserve. Cyclists may want to get there on two wheels; it's a delightful trip. Ask us for the best route. Two portions of the park are designated nature preserves. Over 6000 acres. 4200 N. US 35, Winamac. 574.946.3213

Jasper-Pulaski State Game Preserve

Sandhill Cranes at Jasper-Pulaski Fish and Wildlife AreaConsidered Indiana's premiere wildlife refuge, J-P hosts a spectacular gathering of the entire population of Greater Eastern Sandhill Cranes every spring and fall. During the peak of the migration gathering (typically mid-November) More than 10,000 of these huge and graceful birds can be seen assembled together, sometimes joined by a few whooping cranes. In season, the cranes can be observed right from our cabin on most days flying low overhead in v-formations and making their characteristic chortling calls.They can be seen feeding in nearby fields. For a closer look you'll want to try the observation towers at J-P, about a twenty minute drive. The cranes attract an international cross-section of bird lovers; there's no more convenient place to stay than the cabin at Lena Park. There's also a spring gathering, it's a bit smaller and of shorter duration. J-P also provides hunting in season, fishing, and an extensive oak savanna nature preserve. Over 8000 acres. 5822 N. Fish and Wildlife Lane, Medaryville, Indiana. (219) 843-4841


Kankakee State Fish and Wildlife Area

Wetland lovers, fishing enthusiasts, hunters and bird watchers will all find lots to interest them at this extensive marsh and swamp forest preserve. It's easily enjoyed from a car (or better yet, a truck or SUV) along 'Ten Mile Road' Over 4000 acres. 4320 W. Toto Road, North Judson. 574.896.3522


best eats nearby

Disclaimer - Okay, folks, this is obvious but here goes - these selections are based upon our personal opinions and experiences. Maybe you'll like them, maybe you won't. Maybe they'll be having a bad day when you get there. These are just suggestions, your mileage may vary, we're not responsible for other people's businesses, blah, blah, blah.

Bass Lake Pub and Ristorante

Casual Italian on the east side of Bass Lake. 574.772.6668.

Brantwood Family Dining and Lounge

Home of the Famous Italian Beef Sandwich. Serving Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner on State Road 10, North Judson. 574.896.2538

Chesapeake Run Clubhouse

Chesapeake Run Golf Club is adjacent to our property on the west; their clubhouse restaurant is the closest eatery, but is open primarily during peak golf season, so you'll want to call 574.896.2424 to confirm before heading over outside the summer months. To get there from the cabin go north on Co.Rd. 100W, turn left (west) on at the first county road (that's 700S) go a mile and a half and then turn right (north) on Co. Rd. 250W. You'll see the entrance to Chesapeake Run about a half mile north. It's an excellent bicycle trip, and hikable in good weather. Here's a link to their website

Dairy Queen and Orange Julius

At Mark Bailey's Bargain Center at Ind. 10 and Range Rd. (go north to Ind. 10 and east 1 mile) - closed Sunday.

Carolyn's Cafe

A nice independent coffee house in old-house rich Winamac; 113 E. Main Street, across the street north of the historic Pulaski County courthouse. 574.946.0948 -- if you like old buildings, peak inside the courthouse.

a Victorian house in Winamac

Fingerhut's Bakery and Cafe

A great place to get fresh baked goods - 'like a step back in time' - located at 119 Lane Street, North Judson. Try the coffee cakes, cherry cream cheese danish; the sourdough bread is another winner. 574.896.2821. website.

Grand Central Station Restaurant

Dine on historic Lane Street in North Judson -- look for the street clock. For reservations call: 574.896.3010

The Pizza Point

On Lane Street in North Judson. 574.896.5935

The Point Drive-In

Pure Americana, the Point is a drive-in little changed by the tides of fast food. Features the 'cruise-in' of classic cars on alternating Saturday nights throughout the summer. At the intersection of state roads 10 and 39 in North Judson. 574.896.5932

Richards of Toto

Popular family dining destination and bargains too - my pick for best country breakfast near the cabin. Go north to Ind. 10, turn right (east) then go one mile. Turn north on Range Rd. at Bailey's Discount Center. Go north three miles, and look for the giant Indian.

Wooden Nickel

Tavern with a rock and roll theme, we recommend the thin-crust pizza made in classic pizza ovens; pool tables, sports on tv, also live music on weekends. Great small town atmosphere serving folks six to sixty and beyond - my pick for the best tavern/restaurant. Corner of Main and Lane, North Judson. 574.896.5219

Farmer's Market

Saturday mornings in season, at the North Judson water tower.

Waldrop and Sons Produce

Old fashioned country grocery in Toto (intersection of Range Road and Toto Road) 574.772.4339

North Judson Foods

On Highway 10 in North Judson. 574.896.2400

Ray's Super Foods

On Lane Street in North Judson; check out Ray's homemade Polish sausage and brats. 574.896.2331 - website.

Fine dining further down the road

There's no finer dining than what you cook yourself at the cabin, but if you get the urge to go out, here are some of our picks for finer dining experiences:

Go east on Ind. 10 about 20 miles to Culver and pick from a surprising variety of dining experiences.

Corndance Cafe and the Edgewater Grill are two popular choices.

Twenty-nine miles north on Ind. 39 try Cafe L'Amour in LaPorte, for classic French food, located at 701 Lincolnway (that's downtown LaPorte). Carnivores will want to consider a roadside steakhouse, the Heston Bar at 1000 North and Fail Road.

drinks and such

North Judson Bottle Shoppe

Liquor store located at 222 Lane Street in North Judson, convenient and friendly.

Brantwood Lounge

Home of the Famous Italian Beef Sandwich. Serving Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner on State Road 10, North Judson. 574.896.2538

Knox Liquors

Well stocked - 1200 S. Heaton Street, Knox IN 46534. 574.772.4341

Wooden Nickel

Tavern with a rock and roll theme, outstanding Chicago style pizza made in classic pizza ovens; pool tables, jukebox with excellent sound. Corner of Main and Lane, North Judson. 574.896.5219

Please don't drink and drive! It's dangerous and illegal. Be warned, the local roads are much better patrolled than you might think.