Time For Some Fun

One of my favorite solo road trips took me meandering around southern Indiana a few years ago. It was one of those incredible, freeing weekends when I just sort of wandered into all the right places.

A Pokey Lafarge concert at the Astra Theater in Jasper, pictured here, was my destination but I found so many wonderful things to see and do along the way. There were nice people, roadside oddities, museums and so much more that I can’t even begin to describe what fun it was. One cool morning I spent wandering around photographing architecture and chasing the incredible green roof of a church in the distance. Not to mention the sweet lady who ran an one of Indiana’s oldest hardware stores.

These memory, while sweet, are making me discontent. I’m ready to get out and do something soon.

Even when the world stopped last year I managed to get out for hikes and socially distanced fun. I took a couple of short, calculated trips in the fall but neither of them worked out as planned thanks to weather, Covid and other issues. It was satisfying hibernating this winter but my spring allergies have been merciless, making it hard to even leave the house. A mere walk to the mailbox steals my voice and leaves me with fluid on the ears the next day.

There’s not been much fun this spring beyond reading and dreaming of days when the pollen gets washed away by the rain. I just reread that line and realized how sad it sounds.

I’m ready to hit the road and see something new. It would be difficult to take a trip right now that compares with that Great Indiana Adventure of 2018, as I like to think of it, but it doesn’t hurt to try.

I’m hoping to hit the road soon. I’m vaccinated and have some ideas about how to have fun that will be low risk and new to me. My escape is so close I can almost taste it.

For now though, I’ll keep my head down and my windows closed while I wrap up a work project and avoid the pollen so that running away from home is an option in the (hopefully) near future.

The Astra Theater


Little makes my heart happier than seeing historic sites brought back from the brink of ruin. Such is the case at the Astra Theater in Jasper, Indiana. I had never heard of Jasper or the Astra until perusing the tour schedule for Pokey Lafarge several months ago but I’m so glad I found it.

The Astra was shuttered in 2002 and only just reopened this past April.  Tucked into a small corner of Jasper’s town square, this building would be easy to miss if you’re not looking for it. But it has a great sign that looks amazing at night and the town is so enthusiastic about their theater. People are proud to have it back, proud to usher, proud to serve on the board, thrilled to know that an out-of-towner came to see a show.

Opened in April 1936, the building originally had a neat art deco vibe. They were able to salvage some details like the original lobby ticket booth and colorful lights inside the theater. They extended the stage and stripped the walls down to beautiful exposed brick. It feels both old and modern at the same time.

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The space feels intimate and it’s just a fun place to see a show. It’s a little far for me to go all the time but certainly a theater I would visit again for the right act. I’ll tell you more about the town of Jasper another day. Here’s another look at this outside, this time with me mugging for the camera!

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PS: A duo called The Honey Vines opened for Pokey and they are beautiful singer songwriters. So glad I got to hear them too!