The Bridgeton Covered Bridge was rebuilt after an arsonist, known for torching covered bridges, destroyed its predecessor. It is claimed to be the most photographed covered bridge in Indiana. It is certainly one of the most famous. The story of its rebuilding is a remarkable story. Today, wedding, engagement and senior pictures are done from the little park adjacent.
Since the festival revolves around covered bridges, the county publishes a map to the 31 remaining bridges. While Parke County is not the only county with covered bridges, it has the highest concentration of covered bridges. Of the 98 covered bridges left in Indiana, 51 lie within Parke and its surrounding counties. Vermont holds the record for covered bridges per square mile. Indiana, Vermont, Pennsylvania and Ohio contain nearly half of the original styled covered bridges in the United States.
In years of spectacular fall colors, photographers flock to Parke County. Not just to attend the festival but also for the overlooks within Turkey Run and Shades State Park. Photos of Parke County have graced calendars, post cards and scrapbooks for over a century.
With the coming cold snap, colors should be peak within a week to 10 days, in the Parke County area.
The festival is over, but the covered bridges can be seen at any time by simply following the map (link).
Visitors to Turkey Run State Park (link) will be delighted to find that there is a new suspension bridge across Sugar Creek. The original bridge was badly damaged in the spring floods.