One of the best things about Indiana small towns are the church dinners! These fundraisers rock for more than a few reasons.
First, everyone knows everyone so it’s just another chance to get the community together for a little chit-chat, to break up the long winter, or to finally celebrate the arrival of Spring (which I am so ready for!). Sometimes, it’s also to raise funds for a specific cause or event, like a family in crisis.
Secondly, church ladies (and men) really know how to cook (yes, I’m totally talking about you, Alice!). Sometimes church dinners are partly catered, like for the main course, or they are completely made by church members (can you say chicken and noodles?). Either way, the men and women of the church take responsibility for the sides–and dessert!
As you can see from the photo above–it’s good stuff! Of course, I was so busy getting Kid #1′s plate together I kind of forgot about my own. I think, however, that you can get the general idea of all the goodness!
The church pictured here is St. John’s in Rensselaer, Indiana. It’s tiny! There’s a neat (and very old) graveyard on a large sloping hill (not anywhere near as large a hill as at Ball Hill Cemetery in Cutler, Indiana) but definitely possesses that same peacefulness and quiet. It’s also in the middle of nowhere and basically surrounded by cornfields.
But every year they have a fantastic chicken dinner. Our wonderful neighbor (who also makes the best zucchini bread EVER– hi, Donna!) surprised us with freebie tickets! Last year we had the great good luck to sit near a man who loves to bake (and share) pies.
Apparently he’s known is his small community for his pie-making skills and frequently enters his pies in multiple fairs in the summer–and wins.
We managed to snag a piece of his homemade Apple Pie before it was gone. Apple isn’t anywhere near my favorite (unless it’s made by you, Cathy) but this was so good I forgot to take a photo!
No matter what your religion, I strongly urge you to branch out a little and check out the next church dinner in your area. Whether you attend the church or not, it is a lot of fun and completely pressure-free, at least in our experience so far.
Just think: a chance to meet new people, eat some yummy food, and donate a few bucks for a good local cause (in the case of St. John’s Lutheran Church in Rensselaer, Indiana, it was for needed renovation if I remember right).
St. John’s Lutheran Church
2723 N 700 W
Rensselaer, IN 47978
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little Indiana: Where to Stay, Play, and Eat in Small Towns in Indiana. Discovering Indiana’s best small towns!