Videos, photos

Here are some videos and photos.

Tim Neese is inaugurated as Elkhart’s new mayor

Tim Neese won a pitched battle for mayor, defeating the two-term incumbent on Nov. 3, 2015. Look here for a story about his inauguration on Jan. 1, 2016, and here’s a video marking the occasion:

Take a spin on Elkhart’s newest railroad overpass

It’s not high art, but I took a vid of the ride over a new railroad overpass after its inauguration, offering the public a hint of what to expect. The 15-second vid, posted on my Instagram account, appeared embedded in the story, “Elkhart’s Prairie Street railroad overpass opens after 17 months of work and detours”:

What it’s like to win an election, Mayor-elect Tim Neese offers a few words after his political victory

I covered municipal voting on Nov. 3, 2015, via 140-character tweets and a pair of stories (here and here), but also mixed in video. I Instagrammed a snippet of the victory comments of the winner in the Elkhart mayoral race, Tim Neese, and followed that with a video conveying the spirited response of his backers as they awaited his election night appearance:

#ElkhartVotes Backers go wild after mayoral challenger Tim Neese beats Incumbent Dick Moore #WhatItsLikeToWin

A video posted by Tim Vandenack (@timvandenack) on Nov 3, 2015 at 8:47pm PST

#ElkhartVotes Backers go wild after mayoral challenger Tim Neese beats Incumbent Dick Moore#WhatItsLikeToWin


Life in Washington Gardens, a low-income housing development in Elkhart

I made regular visits to Washington Gardens and the south side of Elkhart as part of a series on the area. It’s the older, core part of the city, where much of the highest-profile crimes happen, and it’s got a rap — not completely off the mark, not entirely deserved — as the tough part of town, the place to watch out. I took pictures along the way, and here are some:

Washington Gardens resident Jessica Dubose says the low-income housing development is “a stepping stone” to other housing arrangements. Yes, there’s violence, drugs, but that’s “not what Washington Gardens is all about,” not what all the residents are about. We continue to gather material for our south side series.


A photo posted by Tim Vandenack (@timvandenack) on Aug 17, 2015 at 1:18pm PDT

South Elkhart resident Forrest Ludwick: “I have good neighbors on either side and across the street, but the neighborhood is going downhill… I’m not afraid if it. Then again, I know how to handle myself. I have a couple dogs.”


Meko Erwin at Washington Gardens, outside a relative’s apartment: “You have a lot people that fight each other over nothing,” over shoes, over taking the last piece of chicken. His uncle George Erwin, there but not pictured, touted the import of religion: “If you ain’t got God, you ain’t got nothing.” Mieko Erwin: “Amen.”


Mekhi Gilbert, 10, right, and Amyia O’Brie, 13, offer their take on life and crime in Elkhart’s south side. “Most of the things happening are there on Washington Gardens,” said Mekhi. “It has a lot of shooting, a lot of fighting, arguments.” They were speaking at the Tolson Center.


A family living on a busy curve tires of cars hitting their home

Every now and then, the Lang family has to deal with cars — coming into their yard, smashing their grills or slamming through the front door. Look here for a blog and here’s the video I made:


A crane crumbles a home as if it were made of toothpicks

A railroad overpass project meant numerous homes had to be demolished. Look here for a blog on the effort and here’s video of one structure being reduced to toothpicks:


One of the bumpiest, crappiest roads

Cold, snow and ice take their toll on roadways. This was one of Elkhart’s worst (look here for the blog post):


The Mennonite quilt auction

Each year at the Michiana Mennonite Relief Sale in Goshen, a slew of donated quilts are put up for auction as part of the fundraiser. Quilts may not seem the stuff of high-paced action — but the activity can get fast and furious. I covered it in September 2012 and here’s the story and here’s the video:


Tea partiers speak out

I did this video to accompany a story I did about the tea party movement in and around Elkhart in the lead up to November 2010 elections (look here). It zeroes in on a tea party protest outside the office of a local U.S. congressman, Joe Donnelly, a Democrat who’s now U.S. senator for Indiana:



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