Street Savvy: Arcadia
Known for glass-making, this Hamilton County burg wakes for its annual May Fest.
The most surprising thing about Lisa’s Pie Shop in nearby Atlanta isn’t the signature pie in a jar, which stays fresh—crust and all—for six to eight months. It’s not the height of the meringue crowning the coconut cream, either. It’s that owner Lisa Sparks doesn’t like pie—she just makes a darn good one. The American Pie Council has named her the best independent baker in the country several times. 5995 S. U.S. Hwy. 31, Atlanta, 317-758-6944, lisaspies.com
Bob Moore of Bob’s Trading Post mans a quirky establishment that doubles as a golf-cart shop and a mini-museum of Native American antiquities. Moore might be convinced to play his favorite hand-carved flute while a taxidermied black bear, frozen mid-growl, looks on from the balcony. 200 W. Main St., 317-984-4342
Like any true small-town fete, the Arcadia May Festival May 16–17 offers a mishmash of things to do, buy, and see. Take home handmade soap and flea-market finds. Jam to live country music. Grant your kid a pony ride. Scarf down a giant pork tenderloin. Admire collector-quality muscle cars. New this year: a sock hop–style street dance on Saturday.
Sometimes a brick wall is not just a brick wall. Armed with blankets, chairs, and kids in red wagons, townies in the ’50s would focus their eyes just below the faded Mail Pouch Tobacco sign at 121 W. Main Street, where movies were projected on weekends. To envision it, stand with your back to the train tracks.
“I was heartsick and needed nature—that’s what drew me to Arcadia. The sound of the wind through the cornfields is just like the sound of the waves on the breakwaters.”
—Jacqueline Luczywo, retired pipe organist
Conceived as a “musical delicacy,” Hedgehog Music Showcase occasionally breaks out washboards and kazoos to bring patrons a lineup of live country, jazz, and what owner Bob Foster calls “antique pop.” Guitarist magazine’s player of the decade performed a few months ago at the venue, named for Django Reinhardt, a famous jazz musician who is said to have feasted on wild hedgehogs with his gypsy comrades. Take that, Fountain Square. 101 W. Main St., 317-984-3560, hedgehogmusicshowcase.com
Inside Hartley Interiors & Antiques, you’ll find green Depression glass, a wooden box for storing ladies’ evening gloves, and other treasures—some belonging to owner Kay Hartley’s grandparents. Hoosier-history buffs will appreciate the furniture finds from the defunct Tell City Chair Co. 317-103 E. Main St., 317-984-3424
Never operated a loom? At Tabby Tree Weaver, Linda Adamson can teach you to weave scarves, blankets, and rugs, or spin and dye your own yarn. A rainbow of purchase-ready fibers hugs the shop. 107 E. Main St., 317-984-5475, tabbytreeweaver.com
Rookery Preserve houses a herony of great blue herons, whose giant nests dot the tree line. You can’t get up close, so bring your binoculars to zoom in from the viewing deck. Optimal visibility depends on spring vegetation and often extends through May. 25440 Scherer Ave.
Brett Morrow converted his B&B for avid scrapbookers, Crop-a-Doodle-Do, into Maple Lane Inn & Pavilion, a rentable country getaway for you-name-it events: family reunions, writers’ retreats, weddings. Located on 110 acres, the 1865 house can accommodate up to 10 overnight guests—and pets. Morrow is converting the barn into a year-round reception hall and plans to offer post-
nuptial “exits” aboard a hot-air balloon. 12120 E. 266th St., 317-984-2979, maplelaneinn.com