I was Born in a Small Town...
We left Ohio as we continued our pilgrimage to the 2019 BOB. On the way we visited a diner in Seymour, Indiana for lunch. Of course, Seymour is the hometown of John Mellencamp. The town is actually a bit larger than I expected from the description Mr. Mellencamp provides in song. Paynetown Campground was only 45 minutes or so from Seymour and 15 minutes from Bloomington, Indiana. We played John’s album Scarecrow as soon as we were settled into our spot in Paynetown Campground.
Paynetown Campground is in the Paynetown State Recreation Area on Lake Monroe. Lake Monroe was built in 1964 by the Army Corps of Engineers to prevent flooding of the White River downstream of the damn. Essentially, the corps displaced families that had occupied the region for generations, including the entire community of Paynetown, and flooded their homes to prevent the flooding of others' homes downstream. Suze, Jim, and I joked over breakfast about what the reaction of the townspeople of Paynetown must have been during the town meeting when the plan was originally announced. “Wait a minute, you’re going to do what?”
Lake Monroe has been a source of drinking water for Bloomington since 1967. I guess that’s a good thing. The lake also provides a very beautiful state park, campground, and some fantastic summer recreation.
Bloomington is a very nice college town and home of the beautiful IU campus. As an Indiana boy, I still take pride in being a hoosier. I remember watching the 1976 IU undefeated National Champion Basketball team on TV with my Dad. It was arguably the best team in the history of college basketball. Quinn Buckner, Scott May, Kent Benson, and Tom Abernathy and were all great college players. The coach was pretty good too. All of the TV games were sponsored by Farm Bureau Insurance and the team had the best warm-up pants in basketball history - candy cane stripped red. That is not up for debate.
Bloomington reminds me a bit of Madison, WI. We met Don and Mary, and half of the nation (that’s what Don calls his 6 children - the nation) for lunch at the Upland BrewPub. The food is great, but I didn’t have an opportunity to sample the brew. Don recommends it highly, however.
It was a very warm day in Bloomington, but Suze and I took a short walk around campus to get some photos.
Our next stop is St. Louis, Missouri for the 2019 Battle of the Bend Golf Tournament. We can’t wait to catch-up with family and friends from across the country!