Immerse yourself in the heart of small-town life during a visit to Wakarusa. With only one stoplight and locally owned businesses inhabiting century-old buildings, you’ll experience a pace of life that can’t be faked. Here, tree-lined sidewalks guide you through the quintessential small town Indiana experience: a welcoming, hard-working community ready to show you a world far away from the hectic, crowded one waiting for you back home.
Experience the Seasons
People get pretty sappy here in the spring because that’s when we hold our annual Maple Syrup Festival. From stacks of pancakes to Elkhart County’s top BBQ, this event brings people from all over. Beyond the food and titular syrup, we crown the Queen, Sweetheart, and Little Sapling, with the celebration culminating in a fun parade.
If you come in the autumn, you have to check out the amazing Pumpkin Tree that literally stops traffic. You’ve never seen anything like it, and once you post from this Instaworthy attraction, you'll get plenty of likes before you even make it back to the sidewalk.
Learn Some History
Experience an authentic 19th-century railway depot at the Wakarusa Historical Society. Originally built in 1892, the first trains rolled in a year later. The trains no longer roll through, but the vibrant history remains alive. In the mid-1970s, citizens came together to restore the building and connect the community with a proud part of its past. These days there are 11 exhibits in nine buildings spread over three acres.
Pick up a special treat for your furry friends back home at Richmond’s Feed. A family-owned business since the 1960s, David, Jane, and their kids help you make sure more than your pets are full and happy, humans are taken care of too. They sell a wide variety of accessories and seasonal home decor items.
Step into the past when you visit Wakarusa Pro Hardware. From the original hardwood floors to more than a thousand drawers, it recreates an experience of your grandparents’ era.
Enjoy a Meal
When you get hungry, grab a slice and mingle with our community at Cook’s Pizza. Brothers Steve and Stan Cook brought their ‘pie’ in the sky dreams to life when they opened their pizzeria in 1971, and grateful generations of fans have been stopping in ever since.
Feel like a kid again at the Wakarusa Dime Store, it’s as old school as the name implies. Life-changing Jumbo Jelly Beans are big on taste and low on guilt (they’re fat-free). The shelves are filled with an assortment of nostalgic candies you won’t find in just any store and wash it all down with a glass bottle soda with flavors like Bacon and Peanut Butter and Jelly.
Make sure you stop by Grandma’s.. as in Grandma’s Pantry. Pick up fresh-baked bread or donuts. Grandma’s also specializes in gourmet items. And if you’re having a group event, they’ll set you up with deli and dessert trays as well as gluten-free selections.