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LAC Blog

All posts by Maggie Gendel

Heart of the Matter – Denny and Ronnie Maggioli Retire

Most people might not know that my parents, Denny and Ronnie
Maggioli, have had a huge impact on the success of Lighthouse Autism Center, going all the way back to the very beginning, when our first center opened in 2012. When we opened our first center, my family and I lived in Carmel, Indiana and I commuted back and forth for nearly two years. During the week, I lived with my parents and traveled home to Carmel on the weekends. Not only did my parents welcome their grown son back into their home, but they have played a huge role in the design of each center. With an eye for interior design, my mom has picked paint colors to be used inside the centers, creating a bright and warm, and most importantly, non-clinical feel for the children who attend the centers. My Dad has worked as a dedicated handyman, carpenter, painter and fixer of all things for each of our centers since 2012. Simply said, Lighthouse Autism Center would not be what it is today without the time and love put into each center by my parents. As they officially announce their retirement, we could not be more thankful for their impact not only on the centers, but on each of the kiddos who have attended Lighthouse. Thank you for your tremendous work and dedication to Lighthouse Autism Center – we could not have done it without you!

Fall Activities in Michiana

It is finally starting to feel like fall and we couldn’t be more excited. We love the colors of the changing leaves, the crisp air, ciders and donuts and of course the pumpkin patches and apple orchards. From u-pick pumpkin patches, to hay rides, corn mazes, and the best apple cider, we have compiled a list of the best fall activities in Michiana.

1.) Thistleberry Farm – this fall activity in South Bend, IN offers a pumpkin patch, bounce houses, a corn mazes and a petting zoo. Children of all ages can find something fun to do at Thistleberry Farms!

2.) Knollbrook Farms – located in Goshen, IN, Knollbrook Farms has a corn maze, giant slide, petting zoo, train rides, pumpkin slingshot and more! This is a real working Dairy Farm that you can tour as well.

3.) Kercher’s Sunrise Orchard – also located in Goshen, Kercher’s offers activities for the apple pickers and pumpkin pickers! Visit the farm for apple picking, pumpkin picking, hay rides, a corn maze and more. The farm is open for various u-picks all year round!

4.) Ashley’s Pumpkin Farm – located on the North side of South Bend near the Michigan line, this small pumpkin patch offers affordable pumpkins, a corn maze and a petting zoo.

5.) Hesston Steam Museum’s Ghost Train – operating the last 3 weekends in October, take a spook-tastic ride aboard the Hesston Ghost Train. Appropriate for children of all ages.

6.) Lehman’s Apple Orchard – located in Niles, Michigan this u-pick orchard has offered apple picking for nearly a hundred years! In the Fall they offer apple picking, pear picking and blackberries!

7.) Potawatomi Zoo – Zoo Boo – each year the Potawatomi Zoo hosts Zoo Boo, a three day event where children can see their favorite animals and trick or treat around the zoo. For this years dates visit their website.