Bradford Raths

This year’s Huntingburg Herbstfest is in the books and officials have announced the winners from this year’s parade.

OFS Brands took home this year’s Herbstfest Queen’s Choice Award. Meanwhile, Shared Abundance took home Best Walking Unit, RG Mechanical was named as Best Car; Eagles Kid’s Club was chosen for the Mayor’s Choice Award; the Grand Marshal’s Award went to Central Christian Church; the Duckville Purple People Eater took home Best Float honors and the Huntingburg Volunteer Fire Department was awarded for having the Best Fire Apparatus.

Of course, the parade marked the official end of the Huntingburg Herbstfest. It got underway at 2 o’clock yesterday afternoon along 4th Street.

A Warrick County man was jailed over the weekend after an investigation into aluminum that was taken from a Jasper business.

Back on September 17th, officials at Jasper Rubber Products contacted Jasper Police to report that aluminum items worth nearly $4,000 was stolen from one of the company’s facilities. JPD says they were able to develop 48-year-old Danny Saddler of Tennyson as the suspect throughout their investigation. Saddler was a Jasper Rubber employee and worked at the facility where the aluminum was stolen from according to police. Danny Saddler

Jasper Rubber officials then called police early Saturday morning to report that Saddler had several other items belonging to the company in his vehicle. After arriving on scene and taking Saddler into custody, police say they found another $500 worth of aluminum items inside of his vehicle.

Saddler was booked into the Dubois County Security Center. He faces a Level 6 felony count for theft.

Jasper Police are investigating credit card skimming devices that were found at a pair of local gas stations.

JPD says one of the devices was found at the Huck’s gas station along Hoffman Road in Jasper at pump #15. The 2nd device was found on pump #3 at the Huck’s location along 3rd Avenue.

Now JPD says the devices are believed to have been placed on the pumps back in July. Authorities found the skimmers yesterday.

Police are warning anyone who used those pumps between July and now to be particularly vigilant when it comes to the security of their credit or debit cards. Hucks is cooperating with authorities in this investigation.

The proposed Jasper Cultural Center is continuing to gain traction.

Earlier this week, the Jasper City Council expressed their support for the idea. Councilmen Tom Schmidt and Ray Howard went on record as being in favor so long as a new building would be built on the current Hoosier Desk site and the current building would be torn down. The remaining council members on hand expressed support as long as the city could afford it and a referendum could pass for the site. Councilman Greg Schnarr did not register an opinion at Wednesday’s meeting as he was not at the meeting.

Of course, the Jasper Arts Commission went before the council Wednesday night to start the discussion on funding for their portion of the cultural center. Mayor Terry Seitz says that effort is still a work in progress, but it can be done:

Seitz says the arts commission will likely have to do some fundraising on their own to cover some of the cost.

Now the Jasper Cultural Campus could be done at a combined cost of $12.6 million dollars. The Jasper Library and Jasper Arts Commission would share the building and each would kick in roughly $6.3 million. The cost of purchasing the building is around $864,000.

The Jasper Library Board voted last week to move to the Hoosier Desk site pending the passage of a referendum in 2016.

Yesterday marked a big day for TRI-CAP.

TRI-CAP board members along with city, state and federal officials were on hand as the organization held a ribbon cutting for their newly renovated south side Jasper facility. The renovation had been ongoing for several years on the building, which formerly housed Dippel’s Food Store and TRI-CAP has been in the building for a couple of months now since work was completed.

TRI-CAP Executive Director Joyce Fleck says the work began back in September of 2012 when she approached USDA officials about potential funding. The USDA ultimately kicked in funding through its Community Facilities loan program. In the end, TRI-CAP was able to purchase the building and took ownership of it last summer.

Fleck says she’s happy with how everything turned out. She says the biggest addition has been the new training room, which is making a huge difference in routine costs for TRI-CAP:

The new training room holds about 80 people.

Meanwhile, Phil Lehmkuhler is the state director for USDA Rural Development of Indiana and is from Jasper originally. He says the renovation fit exactly what his agency looks for:

The renovation cost around $600,000 in all. Work was done by Seufert Construction of Ferdinand.

This year’s Huntingburg Herbstfest is officially underway.

The fest opened at around 5 o’clock last night with food and the beer garden. Entertainment was also at a premium with music from Nick Dittmeier and the Sawdusters of Jeffersonville and a performance from the Dubois County Country Cloggers.

Now this year’s lineup of entertainment is strong with Kirby Staley, Haywire and the Celebration Singers among the musical performances. There are also a few new organizations setting up booths this year such as Southridge cross country.

Jennifer Baseden is part of the Huntingburg Herbstfest committee. She says the entertainment lineup is a work in progress from year to year:

Baseden says the committee often gets its recommendations from the Gaslight or other local entities that host live music to come up with their lineups each year.

Of course, Herbstfest runs through Sunday. Other highlightable events include a barbecue and chili cook-off; the wildcard and championship rounds of the WBDC Cornhole Tournament of Champions; and the parade.

The parade will conclude this year’s Herbstfest. It gets underway at 2 o’clock Sunday afternoon along 4th Street.

MACKEY, Ind. (AP) – Authorities say a van crash in southwestern Indiana has killed one person and injured 23 others.

Sgt. Bruce Vanoven of the Gibson County Sheriff’s Office says the 16-passenger van was carrying 24 people when a tire blew out Thursday afternoon, causing the vehicle to overturn on Interstate 69.

Vanoven says the van was headed from the Washington, Indiana, area, about 30 miles northeast of the crash scene, to a factory in Evansville, about 20 miles to the southwest.

A spokesman for Gibson General Hospital in nearby Princeton said it was treating six of the injured, all with minor injuries. The Evansville Courier & Press and WFIE-TV reported two Evansville hospitals were treating a total of 17 patients from the crash with various injuries.