Northern Indiana military school that faced closure sells summer camp property on nearby lake

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HOWE, Indiana — A northern Indiana military school that faced possible closure this year has sold its summer camp property along a nearby lake.

Col. Tyler Osenbaugh, the operations manager for Howe Military Academy, said it was a difficult decision to sell the camp property the school had owned and operated since the early 1930s.

"This allows us to concentrate on the school," he told The News Sun of Kendallville ( ).

The 30-acre waterfront property was sold in seven sections during an auction Saturday for $622,000. The land is along Cedar Lake near the LaGrange County town of Howe, about 40 miles east of South Bend.

Howe officials announced in May that the 135-year-old academy would close unless it raised $2 million by June. The school was effectively saved with a donation of that amount by 1939 graduate Thomas Parker, whose family made a fortune inventing and selling ice-cream novelties, including the Drumstick, which eventually was sold to Nestle.

The academy has seen years of languishing enrollment and ended last school year with 73 students in grades 6-12, but school leaders said projected enrollment growth justified keeping it open.

Howe trustee Phil Malone said the summer camp once played an important role in introducing potential students to the academy, but that had diminished in recent years.

Osenbaugh said in addition to raising money for the academy, the sale of the lake property would eliminate the cost of upkeep and insurance.

The 100-acre Howe campus could host a summer camp should the school decided to resurrect the program, Osenbaugh said.

Information from: The News-Sun,

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