Community enhanced as Amish folks settle into the Tri-City Area
By Angela Stair Over the past five years Amish families have been moving into the Tri-City Area and adjoining townships in the area. There is now a community of approximately thirty families that have taken up residence. These hard-working people have improved the overall look of the communities by buying up abandoned or rundown farms and homes. Before long improvement develops as the farm becomes a cleaned, cleared, working farm again and the homes are upgraded with improvements.
AMISH BUILDER… Samuel Eash, the mini barn maker, is just finishing up this custom ordered beautiful barn type building that will have the cupola placed on the top when finished. He is located at the corner of 48th Avenue and County Road 681. (TCR photo by Angela Stair)
But more than that, the Amish have brought their businesses to this area. The Hostetler family was the most visible in the community. They began building a huge, huge barn-like building along Red Arrow Highway, just east of Hartford and had everyone wondering what it was going to be. Almost a year ago the Hostetler Metal Shop was completed and opened for business. They make the sheet metal that is used on the beautiful barns made by the Amish. But this business is for the general public too. For anyone that wants a metal roof or to side their house, plus more, this is the place to go to. Freeman Hostetler said they have 18 or 19 colors to choose from. They are willing to work with customers on whatever project they have. As an example, fascia for a roof can be made the exact size. They do not have one size fits all, but bend the metal to perfectly fit and in one long length instead of several smaller pieces. Orva Bontrager is a carpenter with more than fourteen years experience. His Carpentry Shop located on Butcher Road, just east of County Road 681 is now open for business and he is taking orders. He can be reached at 937-354-2163 to find out more information or set up an appointment with him. Just leave a message and he will return the call shortly. Bontrager makes custom furniture, designs and builds kitchens to suit, and even something as delicate as a Grandfather Clock. The building he was converting for his shop is done now and equipment installed, but his show room is not completed yet. He does have a shop book showing some of the work he has done over the years.
HEATING THE SCHOOL… Last October the Amish School Board, family and friends spent several days clearing trees, cutting wood and storing it so their school would be heated all winter. The brave man in the foreground riding chariot style would be hooked up to large trees to move them after being cut down to where the workers were. (TCR photo by Angela Stair)
The Bontrager family moved up here from the Ohio area. He said they were thinking of moving and liked this area and decided to make it home to them. Samuel Eash makes mini barns and is located on the corner of 48 Avenue and County Road 681. He and his family also moved to the area from Ohio. He said they liked the area; it was what they were looking for. Eash not only makes the mini barn storage units, but just completed an order for a chicken coop. The mini barns can be made to a customer’s specifics, to match their yard, house etc. or made to look like one of the models he has. They are just the right size to store that extra stuff or outside tools and equipment. The Bulk Food Store and Bakery located on Butcher Road, just east of County Road 681 has become a thriving business since they first opened. They have finished their new building and will open it to the public around June 12. Martha Petersheim said their shop will have in addition to the bakery and bulk food, cheese and butter will be available. The bulk supplies will also expand with the extra room they will have. In the bulk food they carry sugar, flour, spices, nuts, etc. along with fresh brown eggs, their well-known maple syrup and more. The bakery has an assortment of homemade cookies, candies, pies, bread and of course the really great hand pies. Right now, they are open on Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 9:00 a.m. Watch for signs in front yards that show there is an enterprising Amish housewife that has a home business running; like the candy lady up the road or the cleaning ladies in the other direction. The Amish have been a definite improvement for the community.