WARSAW — Star of “The Bachelor” Ben Higgins visited his hometown of Warsaw on Friday, March 10, to speak at a fundraiser for the Baker Youth Club, an organization he previously worked for. The event was called “A Bright Future,” and was held at the Winona Lake Heritage Room. Higgins and his fiancé Lauren Bushnell shared with guests about what they’ve been up to in the past year.
Higgins began his speech by saying, “It’s good to be back.”
Higgins was quick to tell the crowd that they are still engaged, however, no wedding date is scheduled yet. The couple wants to take time to enjoy being engaged and learning about each other before they get married.
“Some day we’ll ride off into the sunset, kind of,” said Higgins.
The last year has been a whirlwind for the couple. Higgins mentioned that almost exactly a year ago, they spoke at the last BYC fundraising event. That was the first time the two made a public appearance since the season finale of “The Bachelor” aired. Since then, they’ve filmed the show “Happily Ever After?” about their life as a couple.
Higgins said they have been home maybe 30 days in the past year. “We’ve gone all over the country,” said Higgins.
Continuing to be in the spotlight with their new show has not been the easiest route to take. “It was hard on us,” Higgins said. He and Bushnell referenced the fact that it was difficult to live their lives with a camera crew following them around for a couple of months.
Bushnell said she’s been enjoying just being engaged to Higgins and not having to be concerned about being followed around by camera crews all the time since filming for the reality show ended. Bushnell explained the couple had been approached about filming a second season of “Happily Ever After?” The couple declined the offer, at least for now.
“Life really starts happening after the show,” said Higgins.
Being followed around by camera crews isn’t the only thing the couple has been up to in the past year. Bushnell has started a fashion blog “Sparkle In Her Eye.” Bushnell says she loves communicating with people through a more personal social channel and says the blog is a “creative outlet” for her.
Higgins announced he and a couple of others are starting the coffee company “Generous.” Higgins hopes the business will help individuals both internationally and domestically.
After updating the crowd on their lives, Higgins and Bushnell interviewed four kids who are apart of the BYC. The young kids told the couple what they love about going to the BYC and what they plan to do with their futures.
Higgins and Bushnell were given the opportunity to speak with a former BYC member Scott Flannery. Flannery told his story about how he came from broken home but had been given opportunities for success through the BYC. Flannery is in a culinary program at Ivy Tech and plans to graduate soon. He has worked full time throughout college and while keeping his grades up. Flannery thanked the BYC for their encouraging staff that provided him support during a rough time in his life.
The evening ended with an auction with proceeds going towards the BYC.