Stipanovich, late of Chesterton, is being posthumously inducted into the
Amish Acres Arts and Crafts Festival Hall of Fame during the 2017 Festival.
She becomes the
45th inductee since the hall was created in 1996.
Mary exhibited in
the first festival over 50 years ago in downtown Nappanee and moved with the
festival to Amish Acres in 1971. Mary became a close friend and patron to
fellow exhibitor Emma Shrock, an Old Order Mennonite woman who was born
handicapped and spent her life in a wheel chair. With Mary's friendship,
support and encouragement Emma became a prolific folk artist, producing her
first painting at age 40 and painting a new work every day to make a living.
Today Shrock is
known as the "Grandma Moses" of Elkhart County and her works are avidly
collected and hang in permanent museum galleries.
Mary was a member
of the Duneland Historical Society, Midwest Museum of American Art, the
Association of Artist and Craftsmen of Porter County, Royal Neighbors of
America, and National Women’s History Museum Charter Member in Alexandria,
She was also a
board member of the Chesterton Art Center and the Gary Artist’s League.
Mary visited Amish
Acres each year with her daughters DeBorah and Michele.
Mary's artistic talent and continues to create acrylic paintings and
decorative items that are shown in Amish Acres shops and throughout the