Location: 154 N. Main Street
The Nappanee Theatre originally opened in 1926 as the Fairy Theatre. The week before the theatre opened, the Nappanee Advance-News spoke highly of its original owner, Guy Loudermilk, stating he “had left nothing undone” when building the new theatre. The theatre opened its doors in 1926 with “Let’s Get Married.” Ticket prices varied, costing ten or fifteen cents to see a show at that time. The theatre also had live shows intermittently, such as the Weidengott Radio Girls and Master Phillip Brownstellar. Seating up to 435 people, the theatre maximized its space using the balcony and box seats above.
In 1936, the theatre changed hands but continued to have both movies and live shows. With some remodeling and updating, the theatre stayed open for seven nights a week. A neon sign with the theatre’s name was added to the outside to draw people in. Even though the theatre name has been updated to reflect its modern usage, the mosaic tile under and around the box offices still bears its original namesake.
Today, the theatre is independently owned and operated, and continues to screen movies, usually on Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings. For more information, please visit their Facebook page
Nappanee Welcome Center
Location: 302 W. Market Street
While visiting Nappanee, be sure to add the Nappanee Center to your itinerary. With over 10,000 square feet of Nappanee history on display, you’ll be immersed in the city’s story as you enter the first jail cell and discover artifacts as extraordinary as a prototype space capsule developed by Aeronautical engineer, Lee Weaver, and a three-wheeled Foo Car, inspired by the cartoons of Bill Holman.
In the military room, you’ll find Lt. Col. Todd Beer’s Air Force One uniform and the story of his time as pilot for Presidents, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton. Many military items are on permanent display, with memorabilia, weapons, uniforms and more ranging from the Civil War to the Gulf War.
The Center’s collection of “Hoosier Cabinets” and other kitchen furniture helps illustrate the story of how Nappanee became the Kitchen Capital of the World at the turn of the last century, exporting thousands of cabinets across the country by rail and saving home cooks hundreds of steps in completing tasks like making an apple pie, according to a Coppes Bros. & Zook advertisement from the early 1920’s. Don’t forget to step inside one of the oldest homes in the city, built by businessman, John Hartman, in 1897.
Need a laugh? Look no further than the Center’s display of cartoon strips, illustrations and other artifacts from Nappanee’s six nationally-known cartoonists – more than any other city can claim per capital.
The museum is free of charge and is open Monday through Friday from 9:00am-5:00pm and Saturday from 9:00am-4:00pm. Sunday from 1:00pm-4:00pm June through September. Come in today and journey into Nappanee’s past!
Questions? Don’t hesitate to ask the Nappanee Area Chamber of Commerce staff, also located inside the center. Learn about the area’s attractions, lodging, shopping, events and more while enjoying a free cup of coffee or tea and accessing the free wireless internet.
Location: 401 E. Market Street
Nappanee’s colorful history comes alive when visiting Coppes Commons. Originally the factory for Coppes Kitchen Cabinets that once produced the famous “Hoosier Cabinet,” the 100,000-square foot renovated factory now houses a variety of small businesses perfect for shopping for locally made, handcrafted and freshly baked items. Get a glimpse of the fascinating history into the Coppes Kitchens, once ordered by Frank Sinatra and President John F. Kennedy, while shopping this rustic and rambling brick structure. Watch and taste creative ice cream concoctions come to life using liquid nitrogen, taste and buy made-from-scratch baked goods, cheeses, bulk foods or look for a good book. That’s just a sample of what’s in store at Coppes Commons. For more information, please visit coppescommons.com.
Nappanee Public Library
Location: 157 N. Main Street
The library holds many programs and events throughout the year. They also offer many electronic resources, meeting rooms and ‘The Cube’. The Cube is the Makerspace at the Nappanee Public Library where you can learn and use new technologies and equipment you may not have access to. Start a project, finish an old one, meet other makers, learn a new skill or technique and collaborate on projects. The space is what you make it! The library is open Monday through Thursday from 9:00am-9:00pm, Friday from 9:00am-5:30pm, Saturday from 9:00am-5:00pm & Sunday from 1:00pm-5:00pm. For more information, please visit nappaneelibrary.org.