Monday, February 28, 2011

Patriots meeting Tuesday, March 1

Whitley County Patriots meet Tuesday, March 1 at 7 p.m. Church of The Nazarene, 506 North Main Street, Columbia City.
  Speakers include State Senator Mike Delph, Carmel, named  Legislator of the Year by Disabled American Veterans in 2006,  and given Distinguished Public Service Award by the American  Legion.  A leader in the Senate to eliminate lifetime healthcare  benefits for legislators, he has also championed legislation  cracking down on businesses that knowingly and willingly hire  illegal immigrants. 
  Dave Ditton, Senior Project Engineer for General Motors, and webmaster for Whitley County Patriots website will explain the concept of net neutrality and why we should be concerned.
  Elizabeth Griffin of Kalamazoo, Michigan will present our second  educational program on Radical Islam/Sharia Law. She is on the  Board of Directors of Mattawan Area Food Pantry.  Her journey of activism began when her mother gave her Brigitte Gabriel's book, "Because They Hate."  Beth speaks to large groups about radical  Islam, and mentors ACT for America chapter leaders around the
  Public always welcome.  Bring family, friends and neighbors. WCP strive to educate, communicate and eliminate apathy.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Wildcats earn Three Rivers Conference crown

The Whitko Wildcats hosted the Manchester Squires Saturday, February 12, defeating their Three Rivers Conference rivals 61-34. The Wildcats secured the TRC title with the win. Above, Alex Stoddard rebounds the ball high above Manchester players Jim Sainsbury, No. 14, and Derek Self, No. 3 and teammates Zac VanDeWater, No. 5 and Derek Snep, No. 21.
Above, Whiko’s Logan Irwin flies past Manchester defensemen for 2. Irwin scored 26 points in the game. (Tribune-News photos by TRSmith)

Saturday afternoon, February 12, the Whitko Wildcats beat the Manchester Squires by a score of 61 - 34 to win the Three Rivers Conference boys’ basketball championship outright with a record of 7 - 0.  The Wildcats dominated the entire conference, holding their foes to an average of 42.4 points per game; while averaging 62.2 points per game them selves, for a 19.8 average margin of victory. 
Saturday’s victory was especially rewarding as it was the perfect way to send a “get well” message to coach Rob Irwin as well as compliment the annual fund raiser for leukemia, the treatments for which have sidelined the coach. 
Additionally, Saturday was seniors day and six Wildcat varsity players were given special recognition: Zac VanDeWater, Mitch Yeager, Kory Wood, Scott Skiles, Tyler Wine and Travis Wiegold.
Coach Mike Kline started the game with five seniors and five of them added their name to the scoreboard before the game was over.
The first quarter was highlighted by three of Zac VanDeWater’s thunderous “dunks” although only one was allowed.  The officials nullified two for various violations.  Regardless, the crowd roared with each attempt.  On a fourth break-a-way, VanDeWater was hacked very hard by a Manchester player trying to prevent a possible fourth dunk.  VanDeWater was thrown to the  floor and frankly a lesser young man would have retaliated against the Mancester player.  Not VandeWater; he has too much class to lower himself to that level.
Logan Irwin demonstrated his maturity and leadership in realizing this was a game to be won; and methodically guided the team to a first half 28 - 29 lead.  Logan had 11 firsthalf points.  Max Elder was banged up a bit by frustrated Manchester Squires and remained on the bench as a precautionary measure for the entire second half.
The Wildcats pulled away in the second half to a 30 point lead behind the leadership of Irwin and VanDeWater. 
Derek Snep stepped up in the absence of Max Elder and crashed the boards to add 8 points. 
The final score was Whitko 61 - Manchester 34.  Irwin led all scorers with 26 points, followed by VanDeWater’s, Snep’s and Yeager’s 11, 8 and 5 points respectively.
Coach Mike Kline noted the team “really put together a good second half.”  The Wildcats allowed 15 second half points while scoring 33 points.  Coach Kline also indicated “We are going to have to put two halves together against the teams on our upcoming schedule.”
The Wildcat’s play away games at Wayne High School Friday and Churubusco Saturday nights. The games start at 6 p.m.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Rozlyn Bishop is Whitley County Spelling Bee Champion

Rozlyn Bishop, right, was the winner of the 2011 Whitley County Spelling Bee. She is the daughter of Vic and Jacki Bishop of South Whitley. Rozlyn is a fifth grader at South Whitley Elementary School.  The championship word was quotient. At left is runner up Lenah Beck, a Northern Heights Elementary School fifth grader.                  (Tribune-News photo by TRSmith)
SOUTH WHITLEY -- Rozlyn Bishop, a fifth grader at South Whitley Elementary School spelled her way to the county spelling bee championship at her home school Thursday, April 10.

Rozlyn, daughter of Vic and Jacki Bishop of South Whitley, correctly spelled delicacy, capillary, tangential, despicable, yeti, convivial, elocution, abacus, Kelvin and, for the championship word, quotient.

Runner up was Lenah Beck a Northern Heights Elementary School fifth grader. She was stopped in the ninth round misspelling narcoleptic after correctly spelling desolate, onus, rhombus, ultramarine, impromptu, legalese, and feral in the first eight rounds.

Other contestants were Sam Boneff, an eighth grader at Churubusco Middle School; Eric Burkholder, a fifth grader at Coesse Elementary School; Samina Qureshi an eighth grader at Indian Springs Middle School; Lena Owen a fifth grader at Little Turtle Elementary School; Taylor Ruby a fifth grader at Mary Raber Elementary School and Ashlie Martz a fifth grader at Churubusco School.

Other spelling words given in the 2011 Whitley County Spelling Bee were (words which were misspelled are preceded with a hyphen): - writhe, unkempt, testimony, abominable, medallion, engineer, - intellectual, - unchangeable, establishment, bombastic, - zoology, speculate, tangential, misinterpret, supremacy, literacy, - peripheral, gigabyte, and - toxicosis.

Harbringers of Spring

This group of robins found the top of a vehicle on South State Street in South Whitley of interest Saturday, February 5. The birds seem to have arrived extremely early and in not quite ideal conditions as snow continues to fall and accumulate in the Whitko area. Robins often move ahead of warm fronts, arriving just before or along with rainy weather. This means they arrive right when earthworms must emerge from their tunnels or drown, according to information found at This group of males will be joined by females within the next couple of weeks. Robins stay as far north in the winter as berries can be found. They travel, when migrating, about 100 miles per day. Punxsutawney Phil, the groundhog, predicted an early spring. So, maybe, along with the arrival of robins, we can anticipate a gradual warming and storing the snow shovels and winter gear away soon.
(Tribune-News photo by TRSmith)

Strong heart program at Parkview Whitley February 28

COLUMBIA CITY - Parkview Whitley Hospital will present a free program, “2011: Strategies for a Strong Heart,” for people interested in learning how to protect their heart and keep it healthy.

The program will be presented by Mark O’Shaughnessy, MD, of Fort Wayne Cardiology, on Monday, Feb. 28, at 6:30 p.m., in the lower-level auditoriums at Parkview Whitley Hospital, 353 North Oak Street, Columbia City.

Reservations are required, and light refreshments will be served.

To make a reservation, call Parkview Whitley Hospital Community Relations at (260) 248-9400 or (800) 325-1338, ext. 89400.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Remember When?

5 years ago
from the Tribune-News
Wednesday, February 8, 2006
Elizabeth Hall will be opening Country Halls, a craft store right behind Lil’ Dumplin’s on State Street in South Whitley.  Crafts, wood signs, candles, baskets, pillows, and other primitive merchandise will be available for purchase in the store.  The grand opening will be March 1.
Whitko’s Bryan Frush, Brett King and Ryan Poage will advance to IHSAA wrestling semi-state competition in Fort Wayne.  The three wrestlers displayed their talent last week during regional competition where they earned their berths in the semi-state tournament.
Brittney Allender was crowned Whitko High School Sunshine Queen.  She raised $4,120 for Riley Children’s Hospital.
Jarred Jagger and Melinda Kessie, both of South Whitley, are named to the Dean’s List at Manchester College for fall 2005.  Jarred is a senior and is majoring in mathematics and Melinda is a freshman majoring in secondary education.
Robby Harris was presented a $500 scholarship from Kosciusco Farm Bureau by member Ray Fisher.  He was one of five area students awarded a scholarship.  Robby is a 2005 graduate of Whitko High School and attends ITT College in Fort Wayne.  He is the son of Kevin and Deb Shoemaker and Stephen Harris.  His grandparents are Harry and Kay Kyler and George and Thelma Eberly.

10 years ago
from the Tribune-News
Wednesday, February 14, 2001
After seven years of leaking and five years of legal battles, the Whitko School Board approved funds to fix the leaky middle school roof this summer.
Beautician Sandy Kraft recently opened Sandy’s Salon at 106 South State Street, South Whitley.  Today, February 14, is the official opening and the grand opening and ribbon cutting is scheduled for February 21.
Gail Morford of South Whitley, has been awarded the pestigious Sam M. Walton Hero Award.  She has worked at the Columbia City WalMart for 8-1/2 years.  The award is given to a cashier who best personifies the qualities and skills desired in a WalMart cashier.
Amanda Rose, a 2000 graduate of Whitko High School, is now a freshman at Ball State University and is a disc jockey for WCRD, a campus radio station.
U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Jesse J Conreras has graduated from the Airman Leadership School at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas.  The course focuses on preparing and better equipping senior airmen to serve as supervisors, managers and rating officials as they progress in their enlisted military careers.  Jesse is the daughter of Priscilla and Bruce Klingaman of Larwill.

25 years ago
from the South Whitley Tribune, Pierceton Tribune-News
Wednesday, February 12, 1986
Mitch Winger as been named the acting South Whitley clerk-treasurer.  He will complete the unexpired term of Harold King, who resigned recently.
Jarrad Lancaster received second place at the Snider Regional wrestling match Saturday, making him eligible to advance to the Semi-State match to be held this Saturday.
Paula Easterday was crowned Whitko Sunshine Queen last Friday.  Duane Sheppard was her escort.
A bridge engineer has advised Whitley County officials that the old iron truss bridge over the Eel River on CR 500W, near Pook Road, should be closed immediately due to its deteriorated condition.  After discussion by the county council, the bridge was officially closed as of noon Thursday, February 6.
Justin Hockemeyer, a student in Mrs. Grant’s fifth grade class at the South Whitley Elementary School, was recently notified that his entry in the “Ask Shagg” Weekly Reader contest was chosen winner and it will be displayed in New York City.  The participants in the contest were asked to draw a solution to the question, “How do you keep a dog and cat from fighting?”

40 years ago
from the South Whitley Tribune
Thursday, February 11, 1971
Seventy students are enrolled in the junior class at South Whitley High School.  The class officers are Tim Sutton, president; Kim Slater, vice-president; Doris Richard, secretary; and Pam Weaver, treasurer.  The class sponsors are Roxanne Casper and Tom Dilling.
US Marine PFC Larry D Hall, son of Mr. and Mrs. Robert E. Eib of South Whitley, has graduated from a four week Motor School at Basic Infantry Training Battalion, Camp Pendleton.
James Bolinger, son of Mr. and Mrs. Richard Bolinger of South Whitley, arrived home February 1 for a 30 day leave with his parents.  He was stationed aboard the USS Frank Knox in the Pacific.  When he returns to duty, he board the USS Mahan at Long Beach, Calif..
John Pflieger, formerly of South Whitley, won first place in the Metropolitan Opera Company’s Eastern Wisconsin District auditions held January 30.  Mr. Pflieger, 28, is a baritone and one of 32 contestants in the audition.  He is currently teaching mathmatics in a junior high school in Milwaukee.

50 years ago
from the South Whitley Tribune
Thursday, February 16, 1961
Alice Bruch, a freshman at South Whitley High School and the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Foster Bruch, has been named, by popular vote, as Sunshine Queen of the school.  Her escort for the evening was Tom White, son of Mr. and Mr. Kenneth White.
Harold Brower, of Larwill, recently leased the Marathon station at 415 State Street from Wallace Eberhart.  Brower had previously worked for Eberhart when he opened the station 10 months ago.
Marine Pvt Ralph R Sparks, Jr.,  son of Ralph R. Sparks, Sr. of South Whitley and Pvt. Jackie E. Ulshafer, son of  Julia E. Ulshafer of South Whitley, recently completed their recruit training at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot, San Diego, Calif.
Bill Metzger, son of Mr. and Mrs. Joe C. Metzger, and a freshman at South Whitley High School, placed first in the Judging Contest for 4-H and FFA boys.  The contest was sponsored by the Indiana Duroc Breeders Association and Marhoefer Packing Company.
Ted Easterday of South Whitley and Estel Sylvester of North Webster, left February 4 for a six month tour of duty with the National Guard.  The boys are both stationed at Fort Dix, New Jersey. 
Harold Arnold, Etna Troy Township, was awarded the Whitley County Conservation award at the fifth annual Soil Conservation District meeting.  Mr. Arnold farms 320 acres in Etna-Troy Township with 240 acres under a cnservation rotation.
Cpl. Billy D.. Martin, a Marine recruiter here for the past three years, has been transferred to Camp Pendleton, Calif.

65 years ago
from the South Whitley Tribune
Thursday, February 7, 1946
Robert M Miller, son of Mrs Grace Lantz, has returned home with his discharge from the Army after 38 months service as a mechanic and trainer at various camps in the US.
Meridith Arnold, son of Mrs. Mary Arnold, received his discharge from the Army and is home.  He served in Germany.
Von M. Snyder, son of Mrs. Daisy Snyder, received his discharge from the Navy on January 29 and is now home.  He served aboard the USS Rowan in the Pacific.
Sgt. Paul E. Kite arrived home Friday with his discharge from the the service.  He served for 1.5 years at the 4th Army Headquarters at San Antonio, Texas.
Harold Eugene Stensel, seaman first class is serving aboard the USS Jarvis. Stensel, from South Whitley, and the Jarvis, served in the North Pacific.
The South Whitley Bulldogs scored wins against Sidney and Roann recently and managed to have the first undefeated home season on record in South Whitley.
Virgil Juillerat, of Washington Township, returned to his previous job as clerk in the North Manchester Post Office.  He recently received his discharge from military service.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

South Whitley Little League signups: February 12, 19 and 26

It's time to register for South Whitley Little League. 
The dates for registration will be February 12, 19, and 26 from 9 am to noon at South Whitley Town Hall.  Registration forms will be going home with students this week and will also be available at the time of sign up.  Leagues are available for youth ages 4-14.  All students aged preschool through 8th grade are encouraged to participate.
Because of the number of youths that are involved in summer league, no late registrations will be accepted.  Please plan to register your son or daughter on one of these dates.  For questions or more information, please contact Stephanie Cokl at 260-609-4088.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Saturday is Rob Irwin day at Whitko High School

This Saturday, February 12, is the last home boys’ basketball game for this year. The day begins at 1 p.m. as the Wildcats host teams from Manchester High School.
The administration has also designated this Rob Irwin Day.
The Whitko High School Student Council will honor Rob Irwin with a fundraiser for leukemia.  Whitko Student Council members will collect money for the “Pennies for Patients” Leukemia and Lymphoma Society during the game.
 The Whitko Student Council has made this fundraiser an annual event at the high school over the past few years and, ironically, this year the campaign came at the same time Rob Irwin, Whitko athletic director and head boys’ basketball coach, was diagnosed with leukemia. He received treatment last week and is resting this week.  He may or may not be at the game.
Whitko Student Council members would like everyone in the community to attend the games and support Irwin and the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.  Collections will be accepted at the high school office until February 25 and at the February 12 game.  Checks can be made to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society

An afternoon of basketball with senior recognition
The C-team game begins at 11:45 am with junior varsity teams taking the floor around 1 p.m.
Whitko will honor senior members of boys’ basketball team, pep band members, and chamber ensemble members after the junior varsity game. Please join the fans this afternoon as they congratulate these dedicated students and their parents.

Whitko High School is having a Football Fundraiser Dinner February 12, 2011 at approximately 4:30 pm (following the basketball games) in the WHS cafeteria.
Dinner is pulled pork or pulled chicken, baked beans, cole slaw, chips and cookies.
Cost for adults is $6, students $5, children 12 and younger $4; family rate is $20.  Carry out is available.
This dinner is sponsored by Whitko football and the meal is prepared by Jabba’s BBQ Hut.
Members of the KC Mustangs semi pro football team and staff also will assist.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Whitko wrestlers advance to regional competiton

Whitko wrestlers advancing to regional competition are, from left, Colton LeTourneau, a sophomore in the 112 pound class with a record of 27-7, he placed second at the Carroll sectional match Saturday, Jan. 29; Cody Bays, junior, 140 pounds, 22-10, first at Carroll; Chas Busz, junior, 119 pounds, 22-0, first at Carroll; Jordan Gilbert, senior, 125 pounds, 33-4; first at Carroll; Ian Pherigo, junior, 145 pounds, 22-13, fourth at Carroll; Ben Hinora, junior, 285 pounds, 28-11, third at Carroll; and Austin Striggle, junior, 189 pounds, 6-1; second at Carroll. The team finished fifth with 11 teams competing. The regionals are Saturday, February 5, at Carroll High School in Fort Wayne           (Tribune-News photo by TRSmith)

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Talent Show Thursday, February 3, at SWPL

Round three

The third round of South Whitley’s Got Talent contest was Thursday, January 27 at the South Whitley -Cleveland Township Public Library. Contestants, shown above, from left, were: Morgan Puterbaugh playing bass guitar and singing, “Ghost of You,” Kiara Galloway dancing to “Fireworks,” De Shockney, dancing to “Get Ready for This,” and Ivory West, playing acoustic guitar and singing “Kiss Me.”
West, Galloway and Shockney move to round 4 which is this evening. Join the contestants as they vie for the South Whitley's Got Talent crown!
The event is open to the public Thursday, February 5 at 6 p.m. (Tribune-News photo by TRSmith)

Snow emergency downgraded to Level 2

Whitley County Commissioners have issued the following statement

“Whitley County has upgraded to a level 2 snow emergency this morning.  The public needs to be aware that roadways are slick, snow covered and that some have not been cleared as of this morning.  County highway crews have been working since 5am to get at least one pass on all roadways and will be out all day working on the roads.  Blowing and drifting overnight have roadways that were cleared yesterday, now covered with drifts in areas.  State highways are cleared but snow covered and slick.  Travel is slow and you may need to take a different route of travel when going out.  Take extreme caution when driving today.”

A Level 2 Snow emergency states that
3.2    A Level 2 Snow Emergency may be declared conditions threatening to the safety of the public.  Only essential travel is recommended (i.e. to and from work, emergency situations, etc).  Emergency action plans have been or should be implemented by businesses, schools, government agencies and other organizations.

Digital Image Project Underway

Joan Hostetler and her husband, John Harris, have been scanning vintage photographs featuring people and places from Pierceton and Sidney and Washington, Jackson and Monroe townships since June 2010 to create the body of work they’re calling the Whitko Community Digital Image Project.

I’ve always been interested in history, “ Hostetler said. “I worked at the Pierceton Library in junior high through high school. It gave me a strong interest in Pierceton history, stories and genealogy.”

More than 50 people have shared photographs with Hostetler and Harris while they’ve worked out of the Pierceton Library. Some of the images are available for viewing on the Internet on the Facebook site Memories of Pierceton and on Flickr Eventually, the Whitko Community photos can be accessed at Indiana Memory

“We’re looking for photographs, postcards, stereo views. maps, drawings, posters, flyers, brochures, advertising, objects made in the area,

manuscripts and old letters. Subjects of interest include street scenes, houses, farms, buildings, churches, businesses, school class or activity photographs, clubs and organizations.

“History is not just about “important” people,” Hostetler said. “We hope to document the everyday life of our small towns and rural communities from past to the present. Ordinary snapshots of a family or house will be fascinating in the future.”

The operation moves to South Whitley-Cleveland Township Library this summer where more than 3,000 photographs are archived. But that shouldn’t stop people from bringing in their images for scanning.

“We’re trying to get high resolution images. We’ll scan the originals and return them or they can be sent to us scanned, sized at 8-inches by 10 inches, at 600 dpi,” she said.

The main collection has come from Jack Phillips who gathered Pierceton-area photographs for many years. He has provided more than 800 images.

“Walter ‘Ducky’ Long was a professional photographer in Pierceton, a veteran of the Spanish American War, World Wars I and II and a rural route mailman. We have his negatives from 1900 through the 1930’s. It’s a real treasure trove.”

“My husband, John Harris, and I come to the community the third week of the month. What we’re scanning and cataloguing will end up in Indiana Memory - a data base at the Indiana State Library. We ask that if people want to share their photos, they make an appointment.”

The couple are available to make presentations and hope to visit alumni reunions.

Hostetler studied photography at the Herron School of Art and Design in Indianapolis. She worked for the Indiana Historical Society and was involved with its collection of 1.5 million photographs.

A job at the George Eastman House International Museum of Film and Photography in New York led to a master’s degree in imaging arts, specializing in photographic preservation and archives management.

Since 1998, she’s owned Heritage Photo Services offering individuals and groups her expertise on image storage and arrangement and the advantages of digital imaging.

The Kosciusko County Community Foundation approved a grant to purchase scanning equipment, a computer and a backup system housed at the Pierceton Library. A grant from the Whitley County Community Foundation will get the Cleveland and Richland phase of the program started this summer.

“There’s no hard and fast deadline,” Hostetler said. “We’ll keep taking photos as long as they come in.”

Hostetler can be contacted at Heritage Photo Services, 716 Dorman Street, Indianapolis, IN 46202 and by calling 317.639.2814 or 317.956.0203. The Web site is

Pierceton -Washington Township Library, P.O. Box 328, Pierceton, IN 46562, or by calling 574.594.5474.

South Whitley-Cleveland Township Public Library, 201 East Front Street, South Whitley, IN 46787 or by calling 723.5321. The SWPL Web site is

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

KC Mustangs move to Whitko field

The Ryan Huff Memorial Stadium is the new home of the KC Mustangs, a semi pro Interstate Football League team.

According to ‘Stangs general manager Sid Phillips and confirmed by Whitko High School football coach Wayne Swender, the Interstate Football League Team will battle brother IFL teams from the middle of June through August in South Whitley.

“Shaun Craft has been with us since we started eight years ago,” said Phillips about the move from Triton High School in Bourbon. “He’s always pushed us to move to Whitko.”

The KC Mustangs’ first home field was at Lakeview Middle School in Warsaw where they were quite comfortable for five years. For the last three years they’ve played at Triton.

With a roster that includes two other Whitko graduates, Tyler Elder and James Smith, several players from the Fort Wayne area, including new head coach Bernard Pollard Sr. and Columbia City resident and assistant coach Bart Brower another Whitko alumni and member of the 1986 football team, the move makes logistical sense.

“We’re excited about having the Mustangs use our home field,” said Whitko head coach Wayne Swender. “Hopefully, it will be a nice attraction for the town. They wanted to get closer to Fort Wayne, but not in Fort Wayne.”

Phillips said the team has a 10 game season, five at home and five away, on Saturday nights, starting June 18.

Right now the team members are playing basketball at Pierceton Elementary School for winter conditioning and they plan to use the football field there for practice.

Sign ups continue through the off season with formal work-out, tryouts scheduled in February and March. The player’s fee is $100 until April 16, then it is increased to $150.

The February tryout will be at Indian Springs Middle School in Columbia City at a date to be announced.

“We’re always looking for players,” Phillips said, “and we can take them up to the third game. After that the roster is set.”

Players must be 18 years old to participate and not enrolled in high school. Players provide their own helmet, shoulder pads and uniforms.

“Any current senior in high school could work out with them now,” Phillips said. “If they’re 17 they must have parental consent. Playing semi pro doesn’t hurt eligibility to pay in college.”

And Phillips advocates going to college.

“Sometimes we get guys who are sitting out a year and they want to stay in shape,” he said. “They have a true love of the game. They love to come out and get their head beat in,” he said, laughing.

“Actually, our league mission is getting up to go to work on Monday.”

The average player is in his late 20’s, although the team doesn’t seem to have any age or gender barriers.

“Larry Fisher is our 50-year-old. He went to college to coach and did coach a few teams out west. He still has a good leg on him.”

The team also has a woman on the roster, Chaney Hyde, the extra-point kicker.

“She was the woman who scored the first female point on a Division 1 team. She’s great on extra points. And she loves to talk to young players.

“We have all sorts of people on the team, from all walks of life.”

The IFL is down to six teams; last year there were 14 teams in the league.

“We lose 15 to 20 players every year. They might go to another team. And then they come back. Some guys go on to play arena football,” Phillips said. “The teams come and they go. One team can be really dominant one year and the next year they don’t exist.

“The thing about it is commitment. We give these young gentlemen a chance to do something instead of going into a bar and drinking. One guy said he believes if he didn’t have this to go to he’d be in jail right now.”

The Mustangs’ schedule includes three teams from Elkhart, one based in Brazil, one from Bloomington and one from Detroit.

“We play everyone twice, one home and one away game. We keep the travel distance within three hours.”

The season wraps up with a championship game on the league-leading team’s home field.

For the community the teams presence in South Whitley means an influx of visitors every Saturday night. Phillips plans to support and feature area organizations.

“We’ll have an event for the food pantry. By bringing two canned food items fans will get a dollar off at the gate. We’ll do anything to help the community.”

Admission is $5 for adults. Children 12 and younger get in free.

“It’s up to the high school administration who runs the concession stand. They keep all the proceeds,” Phillips said.

The team is happy to accept sponsorships and program advertisers.

“If a company wants to advertise during the game, we’ll put their banners up and roll ‘em up and store them after the game.

Vendors interested in a place at the game can contact Phillips at 574.268.7979 or by email at

The ‘Stangs Web site is

The Web site doesn’t yet reflect the move to South Whitley. However, there is a great amount of information about the Interstate Football and other leagues available.

Level 1 Snow Emergency until Noon Wednesday, Feb. 2


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Weather advisory

Whitley County Government Offices and Courts will be closing today’s date at noon.

Whitley County Commissioners have issued the following statement concerning travel within our county.

“A Caution Snow Level has been declared at this time. No travel restrictions have been reported but citizens should be alert to changing road and weather conditions.” 

Roadways are snow covered and slick with some blowing snow throughout the county at this time.  Caution should be taken if travel is necessary.  Citizens should be aware of the Blizzard Warning that is in effect until Wednesday at 7pm, per the National Weather Service.