January 5, 2010



City of Mishawaka, Indiana



A regular meeting of the Mishawaka Historic Preservation Commission was held Tuesday, January 5, 2010 at 4:00 PM in Room 106, City Hall, 600 East Third Street.  Commission members attending:  Dick Barnette, Judy Gray, David Vollrath, Dave Eisen, Mike Bultinck, David Schmidt, Tony Obringer and John Gleissner. Absent:  Cynthia Harington. Advisory members attending:  Dr. Bill Gering and Cliff Zenor.  Also attending: Peg Strantz, Planning Department; and Paul Hayden with Historic Landmarks Foundation of Indiana.





MOTION:         Dick Barnette nominated John Gleissner to serve as Chairman.  David Eisen seconded the motion.  The nominations were closed. With a vote of 7-0 John Gleissner became Chairman for the third consecutive year.


MOTION:         John Gleissner nominated Dave Schmidt for Vice-Chairman.  Michael Bultinck                                                seconded the motion.  The nominations were closed.  With a vote of 8-0 Dave Schmidt                   became Vice Chairman for the second consecutive year.


The 2010 Rules of Procedure were adopted as submitted.





The December 1, 2009 meeting minutes were approved as circulated.





Local Landmarks


Michael Bultinck volunteered to be Chairman of Local Landmarks Committee.



Public Relations and Community Education


Judy Gray volunteered as Chair of Public Relations and Community Education Committee.



Christmas Gift Wrap Fundraiser


Approximately $80.00 was raised.  It was determined that we need to tighten up the procedure for 2010 with regard to displaying the Commission’s name on the table, contact information of member wrapping, what to do with the money, name tags, educational materials, etc.




Requests for the calendars remain high.  The Commission will start planning the calendar much earlier in the year than rushing at the end of the year.  One suggestion was to plan a 16 or 18 month calendar. The biggest Mishawaka alumni crowds meet in July when they have the fish fry. The consensus of the Commission was to sell calendars to help fund historic house markers, brochures, etc.







JANUARY 5, 2010





Paul Hayden led the brainstorm planning session. 


Historic Designation        


  1. The main purpose of historic preservation commissions to exist.  To protect historic properties.  Local designation is one of the most important ways of doing so is through local designation.  Locally designated properties are protected against demolition and inappropriate remodeling. 


  1. Designation is not a complicated procedure; it is just a matter of finding the property.  We should be designating, at a minimum, two a year.


  1. Refer to the Indiana Historic Sites & Structures Inventory Summary Report 1995

          for properties listed as “Outstanding.”  Notify property owners of outstanding properties to make them aware of the rating and that their properties are worthy of        designation and protection.


          Suggestions for designation from the Commission were:


-              410 Lincolnway East, Niles-Weiss House (Cynthia Harington’s residence/business)

-              Mary Phillips School Senior Apartments, 700 Block of West Lawrence

-              Mishawaka Furniture (1st High School),402 Lincolnway West

-              Shanower Drive WPA Field Stone Arch

-              Schellinger-Kamm House, 802 LWW, McCarthy Insurance Group

-              Fire Station #4 at 2319 LWE


          Messrs. Gleissner, Bultinck and Hayden plan to meet with the Mayor to discuss potential designation of city owned structures to see if there is a level of cooperation to continue with designation.


  1. Landmark Campaign stressing the advantage of local designation.  Include press releases, plaque program.  Mishawaka is one of the few commissions that have an official plaque program.  Mr. Hayden said it is a great thing because other cities have had some problems where ownership has changed two or three times since designation and people are unaware of the local designation and proceed with some really awful remodeling.  It is hard to over look if you have a bronze plaque screwed to your house.


     Newspaper is one of the most important relationships a commission can have. Mr.     Gleissner will talk to Sue Lowe with the Tribune; maybe intern could go through the    process of designation.


          Reach out to community and service clubs explaining importance of designation.





            Certified Local Government has requirements for the Commission members and that is to attend one education training session per year.  According to Mr. Hayden the Commission can meet that in different ways.




JANUARY 5, 2010



-              Commission Assistance Mentoring Program which is held every year.  It gets down to the nuts and bolts and the  mechanics of how a Commission should run

-              Indiana Preservation Conference, state wide conference that was called the Cornelius O’Brien Conference in years past.  This year April 7th to 9th in New Harmony, Indiana

-              Historic Landmarks Foundation Powerpoint presentation with print outs.  The Commission viewed one about 1 and ½ years ago.  A presentation was scheduled for the first meeting in June of 2010.  Suggested to send invitations to property owners with houses rated “outstanding.” 

-              Unique to Mishawaka is hosting a Commission meeting offsite at a historic property.  Think about what properties Commission would like to see.  Possible to tour the old high school (Mishawaka Furniture) prior to construction.

-              Observe other Commissions in the area.

-              First Mishawaka High (recently former Mishawaka Furniture) Tour before and after proposed restoration.  Piggy back with the media.


                    Commission is encouraged to offer learning opportunities to the community in the form of a workshop.  The last workshop Mishawaka held was a porch restoration workshop presented by Bob Yapp at 806 West Mishawaka about 5 years ago.  Commission should think about what they would like to offer; porch repair, exterior paint techniques, window restoration, plaster repair, roof materials.  The Commission will be receiving a postcard for a workshop in La Porte about exterior paint techniques in April or May.





-              Post yard signs for Historic Preservation Month

-              Update Commission brochure

-              Update Neighborhood Guide to Creating Historic Districts

-              Historic House Tours

-              Present annual awards for building restorations.  Acknowledge with a certificate for a “job well done”.

-              Newsletter

-              Install Cast Bronze Plaque Program for Houses that have been locally designated.





            Helps to bring in income for plaque program, brochures, and conference fees.


-              House tours

-              Themed tours such as church tour, Spring garden walk tour, Christmas house tour

-              Past Commission fundraising has included design and sales of a calendar, bottled water sales at downtown events, gift wrap sessions during Christmas and restaurant sponsored reward cards.

-              Design & sell postcards, cook book








JANUARY 5, 2010








          A mission statement should be created that brings focus and vision to the Commission’s work.  Typically, a brief paragraph that is a summary of the most important aspect of your duties, such as: “To protect and build public awareness of local historic resources through designation, advocacy, education and governance.  To foster appreciation of the historic built environment that is unique to our community and to conserve these assets for the benefit of future generations”.




          Do the date and time of Commission meetings work for a majority of the membership?


          Within Paul Hayden’s handout was a list of area Historic Preservation Commissions (surrounding towns) indicating the day and time of their meetings.


ADJOURNMENT:       5:39 PM



                                                                         Peg Strantz, Associate Planner




                                                          John Gleissner, Chairman

                                                          Mishawaka Historic Preservation Commission









                                                                                    Peg Strantz, Associate Planner


Minutes in PDF31.68 KB