Sauder Village Archbold, Ohio

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https://saudervillage.org/

This past weekend I stayed at Sauder Village RV Park. Sauder Village is a working historical village with a cooper, blacksmith, broom maker, glass blower and other craft workers, where you can experience the shops and life styles of the late 1800’s. The village centers around Sauder Furniture in Archbold, OH. Sauder Furniture was founded by Erie Sauder in 1934 and has grown into a large business. Perhaps you are familiar with them. There is an outlet store located at the village. Erie Sanders original workshop can be seen in the village.

The village grounds offer camping for tent and RV. They also offer a nice comfortable looking hotel. I opted for an RV site with electric and water at 36.00/ night. I could have gotten sewer as well but I saved some money by doing without it. It was only one night. I used the available dump site before leaving. It is located near the hotel and has easy drive through access.

The RV park is well laid out. There are shade trees in the area where I stayed. The larger area with the sewer hookups does not have any shade. It is located close to a lake. Fishing is available.

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Little Lake Erie Sauder Village

When I arrived it was not clear where I should register. I drove into the RV park but saw no registration station. A fellow camper directed me to the hotel. Camping registration is handled by the hotel front desk. It was quick and easy. They had my information. All I had to do was pay. I was assigned a lot near the end of the front one way horseshoe drive. It was a good wide spot with nice shade located between two campers. The electric hookup was 50 amp service. It required a 50-30 amp adaptor. The hotel staff offered me an adaptor, but I carry my own. The water hookup was shared from a single faucet with a two way adaptor. The pressure was sufficient for my use and I assume my neighbor’s too.

I had arrived late. I did not feel like cooking. Instead, I walked to the Sauder Village Barn Restaurant. They offered a menu, or a $15.00 all you can eat buffet. The buffet was very good. The salad bar was well stocked. The entree selection was fried chicken, mashed potatoes, fish, meat loaf and vegetables. The desserts ranged from apple crisp to bread pudding. I had bread pudding which was very good but could have been better with some fresh cream. I was seated in a remote side room area next to a salad bar that was being torn down. A family was seated at the long table next to me.They left shortly after I was seated. I asked if they wouldn’t like to stay and keep me company. They chuckled and bid me good night. I recommend a visit to the Barn Restaurant even if you don’t stay at the village.

I returned to the camp site after a walk around the campgrounds. As the sun set the parties ramped up. Campers played diverse music styles at volumes that fed their sites as well as everyone else’s. The individuals were probably trying to drown out the other camper’s music with their own preference. We used to refer to this as stereo wars in the military.

The music and parties went on past the quiet time. Earlier conversations revealed that many campers were locals getting away for the weekend. This also involved plenty of drinking. It did not help that kids were allowed to yell, scream, and run around well past midnight. Two sites immediately across from me had combined to form a large party spot between their campers. I considered calling security but I was greatly out numbered in my preference for silence. instead I put in my earplugs and went to bed. When I checked out I relayed the problem to the front desk personnel. Their solution was that I should have called security. I should have thought of that. Oh wait. I did.

I made bacon and eggs for breakfast. Kids were already out chasing and screaming by 8:00AM. I decided to pull out by 9:00AM. I parked the RV in a provided RV/ bus area toward the front of the parking lots. I had a coffee and cinnamon roll at the Doughbox Bakery. The roll was huge and should have been divided between four people. I ate it all. The coffee was good.
I was waiting for my friends Brian and Michelle to show up. Brian had registered to participate in a glass blowing demonstration. When they arrived, we went to the Barn Restaurant for the $12.00 lunch buffet. The selections were a repeat of the evening meal, but cheaper. It was just as tasty as before.

The glass blowing shop is operated by a master craftsman, Mark Mathews. His works can be found in museums and often sell for a high price. We observed a woman who was making a glass stein with Mark. She seemed to have difficulty with maintaining a steady pressure when she was instructed to “blow, blow, blow, blow, BLOW!” It took multiple firings before the piece was large enough to call completed. I urged Brian to use more breath when making his piece, and to never inhale. Only exhale.

Brian’s was next. He did a very good job. Mark walked Brian through the procedure. While Mark did the majority of the work, Brian was allowed to select the colors, turn the glass in the furnace, and perform the glass blowing through a long rubber adapted hose. He quickly got the glass inflated to a good size through several firings. There were some technical glitches. The hose fell off the solid blowing tube and another time blew off the mouthpiece. Maybe Brian has too much wind power. The rubber piece was difficult to roll off the solid tube when the process was completed. The completed vessel looked very nice. It was set into a kiln to be slowly cooled, and would be shipped later. I recommend the glass blowing workshop. Whether you are an observer or a participant, it is a good experience.

We completed the day going through the various shops. My favorite was the Herb Shop (not that kind of herb). I sampled some tea and bought a Chai tea leaf mix. I had some other things to do, and it was after 3:00PM when I left. Brian and Michelle stayed on to complete the rounds throughout the shops. I would have liked to have completed the rounds but I was scheduled to work on Sunday and I wanted to be back to the RV site at Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge around 6:00PM. I was hooked up and settled in by 6:20.

If you get a chance make the trip to Sauder Village in Archbold, Ohio. It is a good family experience even if you are a family of one. Make it a day trip, or spend the night. You will like it.

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