NORTH WEBSTER — Each year the Mermaid Festival recognizes people who give back to the community as the Mermaid Festival Citizen of the Year. In 2016 a couple, Dennis and Anita Wagoner, has been chosen for the honor. Both are well known for their community endeavors.
Dennis Wagoner is a North Webster native and he and Anita are the owners of North Webster ACE Hardware, a company with a reputation of community giving and spirit.
The son of Don and Clara Rose Wagoner, Dennis shared, “My parents created a family tradition of community service.” Don was a partner in White & Wagoner Mobil Station and later became the owner of Arco Service Station. Clara Rose was a full time homemaker.
After high school, Dennis graduated from Manchester College, now Manchester University, in 1970 and took a teaching position at Pierceton High School. He was drafted and served for two years in the United States Army during the Vietnam War and returned to North Webster in 1976.
Going to work at Techtmeyer North Webster ACE Hardware, the couple became full owners in 2006. Dennis is currently North Webster Community Center Board President and has helped plan the auction for the past eight years. He was a founder of the NWCC. He also serves on the board of Tippecanoe Lake Country Club.
Dennis has been on the Tippecanoe Township Advisory Board, North Webster-Tippecanoe Township Chamber of Commerce Board, was a member of Lakeland Kiwanis Club and instigated the Ball State Charrette, which suggested possible plans for the future of North Webster.
Anita is originally from Greenwood and received a bachelor degree from Indiana University-Bloomington and a master’s degree from Ball State University. She taught school for 31 years, retiring in 2010. She moved to Tippecanoe Lake in 1970.
Being active members of North Webster United Methodist Church has led Anita to teach Vacation Bible School and she is on the church’s Bridges to the Community Team. She help start the Parent Teacher Organization at North Webster Elementary School and was a Girl Scout leader and a Boy Scout den mother.
Dennis noted, “I believe what my Dad did. It is that the North Webster community, summer friends and guests make Webster a great place to live and raise a family.”