You MUST DO these 10 things in DeKalb County in 2018!

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It’s going to be a great year in DeKalb County and you aren’t going to want to miss out! We are famous for our classic automobiles but with our award-winning wineries, chic boutiques, unique festivals and fantastic food options you don’t have to like cars to LOVE DEKALB COUNTY.

We’ve compiled a list of some of our favorite and best things to do that you will definitely want to do in the coming months. Make your plans now!

  1. Attend the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Classic Car Show & Festival and Fall R.M. Southeby’s Auction. – Okay, people, this is seriously one spectacularly fun weekend in DeKalb County. There’s the excitement of the auction coupled with a blend of classic car shows, parades, concerts and plenty of fun in between. Labor Day Weekend IS the best time to come to DeKalb County!
  2. Visit our Three Wineries. (Country Heritage Winery & Vineyard, Byler Lane Winery, Hartland Winery) Either add one of our great wineries to your trip or make plans to visit all 3. What’s not to love about a day of sampling wines and enjoying the day? Make sure you check their schedules for live music and no visit is complete without a wine slushy!

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    Sechler’s Pickle Factory Store

  3. Add the Pickles! Head to the small town of St. Joe, Indiana, where pickles reign supreme. Take a tour of the Sechler’s Pickle Factory that was featured on Cooking Channel’s Unwrapped and then stock up on all your favorites in their onsite shop. (seasonal April – Oct)
  4. Cruise the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum. Head to where the tradition all started, the headquarters of the Auburn Automotive Company is now a world-class museum showcasing the glamorous and gorgeous automobiles that were once built in this city.
  5. See One-of-a-Kind Treasures in the National Automotive and Truck Museum. You’ll want to spend hours checking out the truck that has the land speed record, the GM Futurliner, the General Lee from the Opening Footage of the Show and so many other unique and classic vehicles. Whether you enjoy cars or a good history lesson, this is a must-see on any DeKalb County visit, along with our many other museums showcasing history, art and transportation displays.

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    DeKalb County Free Fall Fair

  6. Grab a Donut at One of the Largest Street Fairs in the State. The DeKalb County Free Fall Fair is one of the most popular street fairs in NE Indiana and features free concerts, games, rides, industrial tent and 4-H Fair activities. Oh, and did we mention the famous fair donuts? Always begins on the 4th Monday of each September. Mark your calendar now.
  7. Get Shopping. Need a new outfit? Something new for you house? We have a growing list of boutiques and shops filled with clothing, jewelry, home decor, original art pieces and more. Downtown Auburn is growing quickly but don’t miss our other great shops around the county. Don’t worry, you can find them all listed on our website.
  8. Come see the transformation of the Early Ford V8 Foundation Museum. Make plans to visit this year as they unveil their epic expansion which triples their size and will feature a spectacular replica of the famous Ford Rotunda. The museum is open during expansion so don’t be shy…come on in.
  9. Have the Crab Cake Topped Filet at Shorty’s Steakhouse. DeKalb County has a
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    Shorty’s Steakhouse in Garrett

    growing list of amazing restaurants that you MUST try out. Have a steak at Shorty’s. Indulge yourself with lasagna at Sandra D’s or a calzone from the Italian Grille. Or try out another one of our fantastic eateries listed here.

  10. Hunt for Treasures in our Antique Shops.  The best part about collecting antiques is finding and exploring new antique shops! From our 25,000 sq. foot Gallery 326 Antiques off the interstate to Miss Vicky’s in Garrett, you are just scratching the surface on all our great shops. Carve out a day for antiquing fun. For a full list of all our shops, click here.
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It’s Crunch Time:10 Last Minute Gift Ideas

It’s crunch time for holiday shopping so here’s 10 last minute gift ideas that you can purchase right here in DeKalb County! #Shoplocal

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Accessories from Sixteen:Thirteen Boutique located at 102 N. Main St., Auburn, IN

All about you boutique- umbrellas

Umbrellas from All About You Boutique located at 202 S Jackson St, Auburn, IN

Betsey- Braclets

Bracelets from Betsey’s Boutique Shop located at 1343 S Jackson St, Auburn,IN

Country Lane General Store

Unique little knick-knacks from the Country Lane General Store located at 221 N Main St, Auburn, IN

essentials and frosting

These cute pillows especially this Tibetan Lamb Pillow from Essentials and Frosting located at 106 W. 6th St in the Auburn Atrium MarketingPlace

Expressions Gallery

Unique pieces from Expressions Gallery located at 106 W 6th St in the Auburn Atrium MarketPlace

Great Lakes Coffee Shop

Chocolate from Great Lakes Chocolate & Coffee Co. located at 1106 W. 7th St Auburn, IN

Kim's Korner

Music magnets and bottle openers from Kim’s Korner Music & More located at 211 N Jackson St, Auburn, IN. Perfect for the music lover in your life.

Lamms Glass

Glass pieces from Lamm Glass Engraving located at 127 W 8th St. Auburn, IN

Paper Gourmet

Cute little Hoosier gifts for those Indiana fans from Paper Gourmet located at 106 W.  6th St. in the Auburn Atrium MarketPlace Auburn, IN

Check out our website for a list of more places to shop in DeKalb County!

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When it comes to shopping, there’s no shortage of it in downtown Auburn. Turning off of 7th street and turning onto 6th street, you see a line of shops filled with all kinds of things to buy. If you’re into … Continue reading

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A Day of Shopping in Downtown Auburn

I recently spent the day shopping in Downtown Auburn and when I turned into the downtown my eyes were met with buildings both old and new ; with shops that were filled with everything from boutique clothing to locally brewed beer. What’s convenient about shopping in Downtown Auburn, is that the shops are close together making it easy to park and navigate.

If you’re into cooking or just enjoy anything culinary then “The Olive Twist” should be the first place you visit. Inside this culinary boutique they have everything from specialty spices to first-pressed extra virgin olive oil to flavor fused balsamic vinegar from around the world.

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Olive oil tasting bar.

You can try their olive oils or balsamic vinegar from their tastings bar before you purchase.

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Vinegar and olive oil tasting bar.

They also try to keep their inventory local by selling items such as honey from Waterloo, IN or Bubble Bath Beans from Albion, IN.


Located in the building on 6th and Main is a cute little shop called “Hidden Key Boutique”. The shop opened up five months ago in a space formerly occupied by a shop called Peeker’s.


The owner decided to keep the Peeker’s merchandise which is comprised of specialty kitchen gear and the famous Melissa & Doug Toys. They also sell women’s clothing items such as boutique tops and athleisure wear.

Hidden Key Boutique

Cross the street again and you see another boutique called “Sixteen: Thirteen Boutique” located at 102 N. Main St. Here there is another fabulous collection of women’s clothing and accessories. They have wide selection of purses, tops, dresses, hats and much more.

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Here there is another fabulous collection of women’s clothing and accessories. They have wide selection of purses, tops, dresses, hats and much more.

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On the same street you can stop at Mad Anthony’s Auburn Tap Room to grab a bite to eat for lunch. I had their famous Greek Unwrap and my friend had the Asparagus Salad with Balsamic. Or can grab a mid-day brew from their selection of locally brewed beer.



You would definitely need more than one day to explore all the shops and restaurants in Downtown Auburn to get the full experience. It’s amazing what hidden gems are located in a small town; all you need to do is explore and see for yourself. For a list of the other shops in Downtown Auburn, visit our website.

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The Amazing Fall Fun Corn Maze

This past weekend I went to the Amazing Fall Fun Corn Maze in Waterloo, IN and it was an absolute blast. There were three different mazes you could try out depending on the amount of time you wanted to spend on each one.


Phase 1 lasted about 20 minutes, Phase 2 was the longest lasting around 40 minutes, and the “Fairytale Trail” was for families with small children.

The Fairytale Trail had the story of “Jack and the Beanstalk” as the theme with a story board on each corner explaining the tale.Photo Oct 07, 2 44 45 PM

I recommend devoting several hours to visit so that you can have enough time to enjoy everything. And I also recommend wearing proper outdoor footwear because it can get pretty muddy at times.


Besides the different mazes there was plenty of activities for families to enjoy.


There was “Farmer Foosball”, straw mountains, tires slides, a petting zoo, a hayride and plenty of other family fall fun activities.

The Amazing Fall Fun Corn Maze was a great example of Hoosier Agritourism and I highly recommend going and checking out “Northeast Indiana’s Largest Corn Maze”!


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The Hoosier Hoodlum

What would make a notorious gangster want to come to a small county pocketed in Northeast Indiana? A Tommy-wheeling gangster so famous that he was deemed “Public Enemy #1”. His crime sprees made him such a celebrity that an Indianapolis lottery betting on when he would be captured was so popular that it had to be shut down. While most robbers steered clear of the lawmen, Dillinger seemed to be fearless, facing the law with guns slinging.

John dillinger

No one knows the exact answer as to what attracted Dillinger to Northeast Indiana but we do know that he did leave his mark in DeKalb County. On October 14, 1933 his gang made a raid at the Auburn City Hall. They held up two officers and made away with about one thousand dollars’ worth of weapons and ammunition as well as a machine gun.

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It’s even rumored that his gang robbed the Farmer’s State Bank in Hudson, Indiana which was the former restaurant called “Gangster’s Grill”. The restaurant was notorious for its Dillinger memorabilia, original teller window and vault display. Dillinger was incarcerated at the time the bank was robbed so his presence at the bank is folklore but the story is interesting nonetheless. Unfortunately the Gangster’s Grille restaurant closed its doors this summer but the original building is still standing.

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In 1934, John Dillinger was shot and killed in Chicago. When the police searched his apartment after his death, they found maps of DeKalb County showing the location of Auburn City Hall and all county banks. Dillinger is buried in his hometown of Indianapolis, Indiana at the Crown Hill Cemetery.

In 2014, the FBI returned a stolen Thompson submachine gun that was taken during the 1933 raid to the Auburn Police Department. That same gun is now on display at the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum. His 1933 Essex Terraplane car was also on loan from the National Museum of Crime and Punishment in Washington D.C. from June 2015 to December 2016 at the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum.

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We will never know what attracted John Dillinger to DeKalb County but he sure did leave behind an interesting story.


To read more about Dillinger’s heyday in DeKalb County, check out the Genealogy Center’s resources such as John Martin Smith’s three-volume set history on DeKalb County from 1837-1987.

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This is a painting of the Biograph Theater where John Dillinger was shot by the FBI in Chicago in 1934. The theater is on the National Register of Historic Places and is designated as a Chicago Landmark.

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61st Annual ACD Festival

The 2017 ACD Festival ended with another successful year. The Festival officially kicked off on Thursday with the arrival of the Hoosier Tour. The cars made their grand entrance one by one lining the street in front of the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum.


On Friday night downtown Auburn was bustling with spectators admiring the Cruise-In and classic cars that lined the court square. For the Cruise-In Concert Hubie Ashcraft and Chris Worth entertained the crowd as they danced the night away.

The Parade of Classics happened on Saturday afternoon with ACD Club members from around the world driving their classic cars around the streets of Auburn. Saturday evening ended the day’s festivities with another Cruise-In Concert.



The Festival ended on Sunday with the 4th Annual Classic City Historic Home Tour. The ACD Festival and Tri Kappa of Auburn joined together to open the doors to Auburn’s automotive and carriage history through public tours of privately owned homes.


Next year will be the 62nd year for the ACD Festival and we can’t wait!

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