2014-09-16 / Front Page

Tuesday’s Town-Hall-Style Meeting In Cataract Aimed At Revitalization

by Michael Stanley
Staff Writer

Cataract General Store owners Kathy and Scott Kuntz are among those trying to breathe new life into the Cataract area. (Staff Photo) Cataract General Store owners Kathy and Scott Kuntz are among those trying to breathe new life into the Cataract area. (Staff Photo) A town-hall-style meeting will be held Tuesday, September 16, in Cataract to discuss ways to revitalize the community and surrounding area.

Beginning at 7:30 p.m. at the old Cataract School House, new Cataract General Store owners Kathy and Scott Kuntz, school house owner Michelle Roy and Indiana District 37 State Senator Rodric Bray will be joined by representatives of the local baptist church, volunteer fire department, area crime watch organization and Lieber State Recreation Area to discuss ongoing issues and ideas for improvement.

“They’re trying to have some activities up there, of course the big thing is their fire department bean dinner. The people who bought the general store just held their first car show (September 6). Another big thing they’re trying to do is, on the Owen County side especially, to get the Lieber State Recreational Area cleaned up... it’s just not maintained the same as some other areas,” Sweet Owen Convention & Visitors Bureau Director Marilyn Jackson said. “What I’ve found out by meeting with people (in Cataract) is that it’s just like any other small community, they love their town and they don’t want to see it go down. They want to see it come back, just like the main street group is doing here in Spencer, trying to bring the town back to life.”

Jackson also highlighted the efforts of Michelle Roy to restore the old Cataract School House building.

“I’m just in awe of what Michelle has done. I know she’s had help, but that woman can do anything – she even dug out the sewer system by hand,” Jackson said.

Roy said Tuesday’s meeting is the first opportunity to reach out to the entire community for the sole purpose of working together toward a common goal.

“We want to see if we can promote the community in general to get people more interested in the Cataract area and address any concerns people may have,” she explained. “We’re interested in having events and different programs throughout the year, instead of just one bean dinner. We want to give everybody in the community a chance for input.”

In addition to the historic general store and the volunteer fire department’s annual bean dinner festival, the northern Owen County village is best known for its close proximity to Cataract Falls, where two sets of falls on Mill Creek create a cascade that drops 86 feet, making it the largest waterfall in Indiana. The upper falls has a sheer plunge of 20 feet; the lower falls – about a half a mile downstream – has a fall of some 18 feet.

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