In truth only our coach was all 5 nights in Nappanee, as Leslie and I spent 4 nights in the Fairfield Inn in Goshen, Indiana. But I liked this title for the blog so I’m sticking with it.
Nappanee, Indiana is the location of Newmar, the manufacturer of our motorhome. As I have referenced in prior blogs we went back at the end of our one year ownership anniversary in order to get some warranty items worked on plus some other modification we wanted to make to the coach. They have a full service RV park at their repair facility and the normal procedure is they come get the coach every morning at 6:00 am and return it to the RV Park at 2:30 pm that same afternoon. This is repeated as long as your repairs or other work continues. But thanks to COVID normal procedures don’t apply. We originally planned to use the time every day to be tourists in north central Indiana, maybe even going into Chicago for a day as it’s only a couple hours away. But this is not possible for us during lock-down times, and although some states had started to open up again when we arrived on May 25th, Leslie and are are playing it safe and only going out when required, mostly for groceries and always wearing masks.
So we decided to stay at a nearby hotel and that way we could stay in the room as needed or go out if we felt safe. Leslie had suffered an injury to some ligaments in her ribs (by reaching out too far for something while driving and belted in place) and we wanted to restrict her movement anyway to expedite her healing process. This also allowed Newmar to keep the coach in their shop at night saving 15 minutes at the front and back of each day allowing them to get more done faster.
The whole north central Indian area is just beautiful and very quaint. The Amish and Mennonites dominate much of the area around Nappanee (which is very small), but the area is still modern in most respects. The biggest difference is the many Amish driving the roads in their horse and buggy combination. Parking lots have spaces for cars and separate areas for horses, like a hitching post. The only real outing we had was a trip to a local market/deli run by local Amish families (or just women as that’s all we saw in the store). We got fantastic sandwiches, but we didn’t buy anything in the market. I would love to go back and shop there as it is filled with all local products and produce. For example: flour; many different types of pickled vegetables; pasta; candied; jarred preserves; etc., etc.. Also there were cabinet and wood working small businesses all over the area. We hope to go back next year post COVID and really see the area.
Back to the main reason we were there, our coach. We have been very happy with Elsie, our Newmar Dutch Star, since we picked her up at the end of May 2019. And the few times we called Newmar for help they were always great. But this visit really went to the top of proving our good feelings. The was no argument (or even really discussion) on our punch list. They just dove in and fixed everything. They also had quoted us pretty high prices for the modifications we wanted, but actually only charged us per hour and the cost ended up being about 75% less than they had quoted! They sent us an email update every afternoon telling what actions they had taken that day. Of course the pandemic plus Leslie’s injury put a bit of a damper on things, but all in all the entire visit was beyond our expectations. We will be going back.