66th Annual Mitchell Persimmon Festival



June is Limestone Month!

The Empire Quarry in Lawrence County supplied the limestone for the construction of the Empire State Building in New York.

The month of June is celebrated as Limestone Month in Lawrence and Monroe Counties. Special events, including tours, carving demonstrations, exhibitions, and festivals, are scheduled throughout the month to highlight the area’s most notable industry and heritage. Lawrence County’s rich limestone quarrying and carving history began in the early 1800s and since that time Indiana limestone has been prominent in our nation’s historic and significant architecture. Limestone from Lawrence County has been used in the building of many US landmarks such as the Empire State Building, the Pentagon, the new Yankee Stadium, the Federal Triangle, the National Cathedral, the Chicago Tribune Tower, and the Biltmore Estate, just to name a few.

The dimensional limestone belt in south central Indiana stretches for 30 miles from Stinesville in Monroe County to Bedford in Lawrence County. This type of limestone is fine-grained, durable, and carvable, which makes it a versatile and weather resistant material for architecture. 340 million years ago a gentle inland sea covered Illinois and Indiana, and the skeletons of animals, fish, and invertebrates over time compacted into our present day limestone layers. In some of the layers, fossils are still discernible to the human eye.

The Land Of Limestone Tour will be held Tuesday, June 5, from 10-11 AM. The Land of Limestone exhibit is permanently housed in a historic limestone building located at 405 I Street in Bedford. It is on the National Register of Historic Places and was once the headquarters of the Indiana Limestone Company. Today, Oakland City College and IVY Tech share the building.

Land of Limestone Exhibit, 405 I Street, Bedford, Indiana.

“If Tombstones Could Talk” features interpreters in character at a special tour of Greenhill Cemetery in Bedford. Visit monuments of historic figures in the limestone industry. This event will be on Sunday, June 24, from 10 AM-Noon. Tickets are available for a picnic lunch and tour for $15 or $5 for the tour only. Call the Lawrence County Tourism Commission to reserve your tickets, 800-798-0769.
Stone Carving Exhibit will be held in downtown Bedford on Friday, June 29, and Saturday, June 30, from 11 AM-6 PM. Professional stone carvers will demonstrate live and provide an opportunity for you to try your hand at limestone carving. An exhibit of limestone sculptures will be at the nearby Lawrence County Museum of History, 929 15th Street, Bedford. While there, vote for your favorite sculpture for the People’s Choice Award. Located around the corner is the Wiley Art Center with an exhibit of limestone-related paintings by local artists, 1402 J Street, Bedford.

Festivals cap off the month with the BBQ at the Quarry on Friday, June 29, from Noon-Midnight, and Saturday, June 30, from 8 AM-Midnight. There will be BBQ contests with sampling, beer garden, and live bands. On  Wednesday, July 4, celebrate our nation’s birthday at the Limestone Heritage Festival at various locations in Bedford. Events include a showcase parade at 11 AM, an ice cream social, the Lawrence County Community Band Concert, and a live band concert with fireworks.

Other limestone attractions in Lawrence County are Bluespring Caverns underground boat tours, Spring Mill State Park with Twin Caves boat tours and the Pioneer Village and the Gristmill constructed of limestone, and limestone architecture, art, and quarries throughout the county.

The Limestone Trail is a self-guided tour through Monroe and Lawrence Counties. Each point on the trail demonstrates the functionality, art, or significance of limestone in the area. Brochures can be downloaded at http://www.limestonecountry.com or copies are available at the Lawrence County Tourism office, 533 W. Main Street, Mitchell, 800-798-0769.

The complete Limestone Month calendar of events can be found online at http://www.limestonemonth.

June is Limestone Month.

Published in: on May 29, 2012 at 4:00 pm  Comments (6)  

Lawrence County Gets Its Twinkle On!

This yuletide season begins the first weekend in December in Lawrence County with a sprinkling of sparkling activities for the Santa believers in all of us.

One of our shinning stars is Spring Mill State Park with “Christmas in the Pioneer Village” on Friday, December 3rd, from 5-9 pm. The Pioneer Village is an authentic late 1800’s town and the folks there will welcome you with candles in the windows, while warming you up with wassail, baked cookies and live musicians playing seasonal songs. The heritage artisans craft holiday gifts and decorations while waiting for Father Christmas to make his way there. Just follow the luminaries to find him. This living postcard happens again the next day, Saturday, December 4th, from 1-9 pm. This is an opportunity for your family to experience something memorable as you are transported two centuries back in time.

A novel idea to light up community spirit in Springville is their “Christmas at the Park”. The park is divided into sections and the public is invited to decorate their own section with lights and holiday displays. The judging will begin at 6 pm, on Friday, December 3rd, and the winner receives a cash prize. More prizes will be awarded at the “Chil-lie Cook-Off” at the old gym in Springville. Judges will decide the best three chilis and Santa Claus will come to see if the judges did a good job!

Also, on December 3rd, 7:30 pm, Forever Gold will give a concert at the Schafer Auditorium in Bedford. This band will perform holiday rock and roll, as well as 50’s, 60’s, and 70’s music. We don’t forget the “boomers” when we plan the holiday festivities here! Tickets are $10 at the door and $8 for “rockers” 65+ years young.

LIGHTS! CAMERA! ACTION! are the three words that depict December 4th in downtown Bedford. The premier event is the Bedford Christmas Parade with the theme “A Toyland Christmas” beginning at 5:45 pm with the illumination of the downtown lights, then the parade at 6 pm. It would be a good idea to bring your cameras and camcorders for all the spectacular action! Last year with 130 entries in the parade made this the largest Christmas parade in southern Indiana.

We begin this day of festivities with the L.I.F.E Christmas Fantasia, starting at 9 am at the Parkview School in Bedford with the viewing and auction of decorated trees and wreaths to benefit the Lawrence County Interfaith Endeavor food pantry. Truly beautiful trees for a beautiful cause, truly.

The Twelve Months of Christmas, downtown Bedford, is having Children’s Story Time, beginning at 12:30 pm until Santa arrives at 1 pm. He will bring a small gift for the children that visit him until he leaves for the North Pole at 3 pm.

At that same hour, the horse-drawn carriage rides begin around the Bedford square until 5 pm.

To keep everyone toasty and happy does a nice bowl of chili sound good? We have that too with lively entertainment by The Lloyd Wood Show. The Chili Supper begins at 4 pm and includes a steamy bowl of chili, hot dog, cookie, and a drink, all for $5 until the conclusion of the parade.

For a vintage video of the Bedford Christmas Parade, circa late 1930’s to early 1940’s from YouTube:


We end the evening on a heartfelt note but with some holiday cheer thrown in, as its back to the Twelve Months of Christmas for a Shopping Party that benefits The American Cancer Society.

Enjoy the sparkle in your loved ones eyes during our wonderful holiday celebrations here in lovely Lawrence County, in serene southern Indiana. Peace, Comfort and Joy to everyone!

-Antique Tractor & Farm Implements Show-


Antique farm tractors, working farm implements, and gas engines dating back to the 1940’s will be on display at Spring Mill State Park. Step back in time and imagine what it was like in the days when the family tractor was the most important piece of machinery on the farm! Presented in cooperation with the Tri-County Antique Farm Machinery Association.


Sat Apr 25 (9am-5pm) and Sun Apr 26 (9am-3pm)

 Sycamore Shelter at Spring Mill State Park in Mitchell

For more information click here!

March & April 2009 Events

March 7 – Stardusters Swing Band – Opera House in Mitchell

March 21 – Mark Newton’s Band – Opera House in Mitchell

April 4 – Lost River Rising – Opera House in Mitchell

April 4 – Guided Lost River Field Trip – For more information call 317-253-6951

April 9 – Full Moon Hike – Spring Mill State Park

April 12 – Easter Egg Hunt – Spring Mill State Park

April 17 – Side Street Strutters – 7:30pm – Bedford Performing Arts Center

April 17 – 19 – Spring Singles Ride – Midwest Trail Ride Horseman’s Campground – Norman – For more information call 812-834 -6686

April 18 – Dixieland Rhythm Kings – Opera House in Mitchell

April 18 & 19 – Lawrence County History Fest – Murray Forest Park – Bedford

Published in: on February 27, 2009 at 7:32 pm  Leave a Comment