Family Reunions

Host your reunion along the Heritage Trail and take advantage of plenty of lodging choices, a wide range of activities, walkable downtowns, well tended parks and outdoor gathering spaces. And, of course, our expert help in planning.

What makes our area a good reunion destination?

Our location: Interstate 80/90 travels through Elkhart County as well as US 20 and US 6. We’re within several hours driving distance of major Midwest metro areas including Chicago, Detroit, Indianapolis, Toledo and Grand Rapids.

Great value: You’ll enjoy affordable, yet high quality, accommodations, dining, entertainment and events.

One-of-a-kind places to explore: We’re home to one of the largest Old Order Amish communities in the western hemisphere. You benefit from unique facilities including historic sites, distinctive and fun museums. We have several excellent parks for hiking and wildlife viewing, disc golf, picnic shelters with grills, two rivers providing options for canoeing, kayaking, and the Pumpkinvine Bike Path that spans several communities. Our lively downtowns offer a variety of dining choices, arts and entertainment, special events and distinctive shopping. And you won’t want to miss North America’s only Quilt Gardens Tour.

We’re here to help: The Elkhart County CVB provides free assistance for reunion planning. That’s 20 years of group planning expertise with: Site Visits; Hotel bidding service; Resource Information; Regional Information; Customized arrangement coordination; Customized itineraries; and Collateral materials.

Unique properties: Host your reunion in the relaxed and family-friendly ambiance of one of our distinct reunion facilities. Smaller reunions have plenty of B&B choices, many with private areas for families to gather. And you’ll also find lots of group-friendly cabin accommodations.

Das Dutchman Essenhaus, 240 US 20, Middlebury, IN,

www.essenhaus.com

With five meeting rooms and over 5,000 square feet of space, well over 400 total people can be accommodated at the Essenhaus Inn and Conference Center. Meeting rooms are also available for private dining in the 1,100 seat Amish-style restaurant where groups of 15 to 500 can be served simultaneously.

89 uniquely decorated guest rooms are available for overnight accommodations. Flexibility was built into the Inn with unique room configurations that allow two bedrooms to connect to a common living room, if so desired. The living room with overstuffed and comfortable furniture and separate kitchenette allow families the opportunity to sleep in separate guest rooms but also join together for board games, cards, snacks or to just catch up on the latest family news in a relaxing atmosphere.

46 Standard double/double; 28 Balcony rooms; 9 Suites; 6 “Living” rooms (kitchenette and living area between two standard guest rooms)

Planning Help: A complimentary professional group coordinator is assigned to groups booking 10 or more guest rooms. This specialist assists with menu selections, lodging accommodations, food and beverage service, and any audio-visual needs.

Restaurant/Catering: The 1,100 seat restaurant on the main campus serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner Monday through Saturday. Essenhaus Catering provides food and beverage service to the Essenhaus Inn and Conference Center. A deluxe complimentary continental breakfast for all overnight guests at Essenhaus Inn & Conference Center.

Public areas available for group gatherings: There is no fee charged to utilizing public areas for casual gatherings but seating and privacy is limited in the breakfast area and atrium sitting area. For best group gatherings, we rent meeting rooms by the half or full day. Charges are listed below and floor plans and specs are on www.Essenhaus.com

On-Site Amenities/Attractions:

  • Indoor pools (2)
  • Therapeutic hot tub
  • Game room
  • Exercise room
  • Children’s play area
  • Miniature golf course (Hands-on demonstrations and interactive class opportunities for 15 people or more)
  • Horseshoe pitching
  • Fishing in the stocked pond
  • Horse-drawn carriage rides
  • Hand dipped ice cream is available
  • On-site shopping
  • Board Games

Off-Site Amenities/Attractions to which the property is particularly convenient:

  • Two public golf course (links style) located nearby
  • Bonneyville Mill County Park & historic gristmill
  • Downtown Middlebury
  • Shipshewana Flea Market – 15 minute drive
  • Free RV Manufacturing Tours

Accessibility of lodgings to attractions and each other: The Essenhaus campus consists of the restaurant, home style bakery, gift shops and specialty stores, and Inn & Conference Center all in close proximity and handicap accessible.

Kid-friendly: Special children’s pool and play area; miniature golf, game room and board games, carriage rides, fishing, horseshoe pitching; family friendly rooms.

Amish Acres Historic Farm and Heritage Resort, 1600 W. Market Street, Nappanee, IN.

Contact: Marlies West, 574.773.4188 X 240 www.AmishAcres.com

Listed in The National Register of Historic Places, Amish Acres is an 80-acre historic resort in Nappanee, Indiana, dedicated to honoring the Amish way of life through historic interpretation.

Reunion guests can enjoy tractor-drawn wagon and guided tours, learning the whys and ways of Amish life on the historic farm and guests enjoy on site shopping.

Seasonal special events are an added bonus.

Amish Acres can accommodate up to 2000 in a beautiful outdoor setting on the 80 acre historic farm. Bicycle rental to pedal to town and along country back roads. Backroad tours offered.

Amish Acres century old barn restaurant offers 5 different meeting rooms which can accommodate 30 to 400 people and the room charge is discounted or waived depending on meal choice. There are many meal choices including Amish Acres famous family style Threshers dinner, plated gourmet meals, and outdoor picnics.

Amish Acres has an experienced and friendly group sales department offering group discounts and planning assistance. All events are subject to a coordination fee.

Amish Acres -The Inn at Amish Acres is located within walking distance to the historic farm and offers 64 country guest rooms that feature plain pine furniture constructed in Indiana, wrought iron lamps, replica Amish quilts on the beds, web-seated chairs and hand-signed framed photographs of Amish Acres.

Rooms feature wireless internet connection, coffee makers, hairdryers, irons and ironing boards. Sixteen of the sixty-four guest rooms feature king beds with whirlpool tubs, wet bars, microwave ovens, and refrigerators in a single room setting.

The Inn has a AAA 3 Diamond Rating.

Inn offers:

  • complimentary continental breakfast and
  • outdoor swimming pools (weather permitting).

Amish Acres offers on site entertainment with Indiana’s only professional musical repertory theatre. The restored 1911 majestic Round Barn Theatre at Amish Acres offers a 9 month season of family-friendly musicals such as Annie, 42nd Street and Cinderella in repertoire with Plain & Fancy.

Nearby:

  • Within walking distance to downtown Nappanee with shops, dining, library and old fashioned movie theater.
  • Nappanee Municipal Golf Course within 2 miles. RV factory tours.
  • Borkholder Dutch Village – ½ mile
  • Explore Amish Country backroads. Visit Amish run businesses such as quilters, furniture makers, general stores, harness makers, etc.
  • RV Manufacturer tours, flea markets

Eby’s Pines Campgrounds, State Road 120, Bristol, IN (close to Indiana Toll Road exit 101 or 107)

Contact: Barry Lang, Manager, 574-848-4583 www.ebyspines.com

Family owned campground among 75 acres of pine trees nestled along the Little Elkhart River. Water, electric and sewer hookups.

Rustic log cabins.

Amenities: 2,400 sq. ft. heated pool with certified lifeguards on duty plus smaller heated, therapeutic pool; game room; playground, tennis and basketball courts, volleyball court, shuffleboard and horseshoe pits; and stocked fishing pond; grills.

Pavilions to rent for affordable fee.

Banquet facilities that seat from 30 to 300. Professional in-house catering staff

Eby’s Family Fun Skate Center – (just across SR 120 from campground) Family owned 10,000 sq. ft. facility with hard wood floor skating arena, snack bar, game room and gathering area. Facility can be rented out for private use. Skate rental is free for daytime private functions. Daytime 2 hr. function Mon-Sat. before 4pm. Friday or Sat. evenings 5-7pm. Also Monday – Thursday evening private use.

Scenic hiking paths from the campground connect to Bonneyville Mill County Park (approx 20 min.hike). Park is site of Indiana’s oldest continuously operating gristmill open to tour free, fresh ground flour for sale. County park offers 5 miles of marked nature trails, picnic shelters, grills, etc.

Close by:

  • Sims Oak Hills public golf course less than 2 miles away
  • Popular restaurants noted for group dining: Das Dutchman Essenhaus and Patchwork Quilt, plus in-home Amish dining options in area.
  • Canoeing on St. Joseph River, Fluid Fun Canoe Rental, Bristol
  • RV Manufacturing Tours in area
  • Amish Country backroads and shopping