What do you do with a 4-room schoolhouse, built in the ’20’s, and decommissioned in the ’80’s? Well if you’re Diana and Vince Milligan, you turn it into a B&B. I asked Diana how someone decides to buy such an old building, clearly a sizable project. She said “I had a vision!” If only more of us had such clarity. They’ve been open for a few months.
The Fulmer Elementary school, built in 1926, was bought by a local pastor in about 1987, who turned it into a house (a rather clever way to get a 10,000 square foot house) and did a little remodeling. Vince and Diana bought it in 2003, and since then have been turning it into a B&B and one-stop-shop for weddings and other events.
Each of two classrooms was turned into two bedrooms along with the principal’s office. The remaining two classrooms were turned into a huge community living/dining room and a really cute gym. The center area is essentially a museum of school and other items.
We stayed for several days, and the place is very livable. My wife, who’s a elementary teacher, was smitten with the school memorabilia, and the stuffed kittens (not real, but very realistic) scattered here and there “got” us more than once. The rooms are very large, and have plenty of room – unlike the usual hotel room – and the community room adds even more space. There’s plenty of parking, and being in a rural location it’s pretty quiet at night.
So, if you’re going to be in the South Bend, IN, area for a night or two, or are just into interesting B&B’s, check them out.
The Fulmer House
Bed-Breakfast & More
60415 Bremen Hwy
Mishawaka, IN 46544