Plan a “color tour” with LaGrange County’s “Off the Beaten Path” self- guided trail and discover unique backroad treasures through the tranquility of the Amish countryside. Autumn’s crisp air and beautiful bright colors inspire travelers to enjoy the splendor of a country drive. Cooler weather is ideal for a self-guided trail where you can admire the fall foliage. Fall is also harvest season which is an ideal way to experience the Amish culture, including the collecting of hay to feed their livestock over the winter.
The trail will take you to backroad shops and barn quilts throughout LaGrange County. Pick up a map at the Shipshewana Visitors Center or print your own copy from their website. Make it a new seasonal tradition and drive out to the many Amish cottage shops sprinkled along the trail. You’ll be surprised to find candles made with honey, hand weaved baskets lined with fabric, and handmade leather belts, handbags, and wallets. Enjoy the sights and smells of homemade breads and cinnamon rolls, or snack on fresh cheese curds along the way.
Barn quilts celebrate tradition in the Amish and Mennonite culture. Originated in Pennsylvania by Pennsylvania-Dutch farmers, barn quilts and primitive stars were believed to protect the farm and bring good fortune. In LaGrange County, barn quilts can be seen on barns, homes, and businesses all around our towns and countryside. The trail will guide you to each barn quilt while enjoying picturesque autumn leaves.
Stay a while, enjoy the sights, and walk or ride your bike along the Pumpkinvine Trail. Take the family to the Pumpkinvine trailhead located at North Park in downtown Shipshewana. The paved trail will be in full autumn bloom while you enjoy the sights and experience more of the beautiful countryside.
As the cooler air approaches and fall turns to winter, turn your attention to the area’s upcoming holiday events. Plan to be in Shipshewana the first Saturday of November for the Lighting of Shipshewana Parade and Ceremony. See the whole town get together to celebrate the wonder of the holiday and get in some Christmas shopping—the downtown shops stay open until 9 p.m.
Experience Shipshewana’s Lights of Joy. This holiday tradition for the whole family includes a drive-through light display experience which home to two million LED Christmas lights displayed in a mile-and-a- half-long symphony of colorful lights scenes for this upcoming holiday season.
Plan to stay in one of LaGrange county’s seasonally-decorated hotels and enjoy “Noel” A Celebration of Christmas at the Michiana Events Center MEC. Two hours of nonstop Christmas excitement for the whole family, this amazing show features beautiful horses with talented riders from all around the world. See Noel singers and dancers perform. Take part in one of the largest living nativities with live townspeople with their sheep, goats, donkey and cow.
The LaGrange County Convention and Visitors Center provides free visitor guides and coupon books with 60 deals throughout Shipshewana and LaGrange County. You can find them at 350 S Van Buren Street in Shipshewana, or go online at visitshipshewana.org.