Film captures people’s love of Pendleton


PENDLETON — Why do people love living in Pendleton?

It turns out there are many answers to the question, and a select group of Pendleton residents share their responses in “Now Entering Pendleton,” a one-hour program produced by WIPB-TV, a PBS station in Muncie.

The residents joined the WIPB crew in Pendleton last fall to helped make the documentary film, which airs from 8 to 10 p.m. Tuesday, March 7.

It showcases what many think makes Pendleton such a great hometown and wonderful place to live.

Michelle Kinsey, community engagement coordinator at WIPB, said the station met with town leaders last fall to let them know about the project and spread the word; then there was a meeting for people interested in sharing stories about the town. Of the 20 who expressed interest, 18 ended up sharing their stories.

The stories “run the gamut from Falls Park to growing up on State Street to life in middle school to the arts,” Kinsey said. “Just wonderful stories from a group of people you can tell immediately are very passionate about the town in which they live.”

The South Madison Community Foundation is hosting a viewing party at the time of the broadcast on March 7 at Pendleton Heights High School.

South Madison Community Foundation officials said they are excited to host the premiere because they think it’s important to make the most of opportunities to celebrate together as a community.

“A project that brings together so many storytellers and creates a final product that so fittingly describes our town is a cause for celebration,” said Tammy Bowman, who works in donor and community development at the South Madison Community Foundation.

While people can watch it from their homes, foundation officials hope they will gather at the high school to watch it.

Kinsey said the residents who tell their stories also provided pictures and videos that WIPB used to produce the documentary.

“It truly is a storyteller project,” she said. “We filmed it and edited it and put it in a nice little package.”

Bowman saw a preview of the show and said she especially enjoyed the stories by Chloe Erdos and Sherry Boram, who talked about something simple like walking to school from their downtown neighborhoods and visiting the stores and restaurants along State Street.

“The two storytellers recounted very similar experiences except that they take place several decades apart,” Bowman said. “It goes to show that we have plenty of experiences that unite us with our neighbors, even if we might initially think something like an age difference would cause us to not have much in common.”

The documentary will be part of a live pledge show on WIPB-TV, where donations for the channel will get the viewer a free copy of the documentary.

The Town of Pendleton was the second community WIPB-TV selected to be featured in their small town documentaries.

The program is designed to showcase the towns in the Madison County area.

Katie Burke of Pendleton contributed to the project and said she loves Pendleton because it’s home and it’s where her family lives.

“It’s where my heart is — it’s where I feel comfortable,” she said in one part of the show.

Judge George Gasparovic, who is in charge of Pendleton’s town court, also contributed.

While there are many things about Pendleton he loves, he said, it’s the people that make the town so great.

“They all go out of their way for you, there’s no question about that,” he says in another segment of the program.

Pendleton, established in 1820, is a great place to live, raise a family and get a good education, foundation officials said.

Some of the assets in the community, the park, the library and the youth organizations have all been created and established by the people of Pendleton, town manager Tim McClintick said.

“If there is a need, it gets taken care of,” he says in the show.

Community editor Scott Slade contributed to this story.

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