Sunday, July 25th, 2021

Hotel LaFontaine story to be told at HU April 27

Posted: Friday, April 20, 2018

The story of the Hotel LaFontaine and other points of interest in Huntington will be told on Friday, April 27. The long awaited documentary will be shown at the Merillat Center for the Arts at Huntington University at 7 p.m. WPTA Channel 21’s Eric Olsen was in town recently to cover the documentary, click here to view the segment.

The documentary was produced by Auburn resident Matthew Murray of Whitehorse Entertainment Company, and was supported in part by local donations. The public is invited to the showing and there is no admission charge.

The production of the documentary will preserve the story of the Hotel LaFontaine for years to come and generate publicity for the Huntington community. DVDs of the production may also be purchased on Friday evening.

According to a press release presented to the Huntington County Chamber of Commerce, the story of the Hotel LaFontaine is unique in many ways as it was built and furnished with the finest materials, and quickly rose to national fame as an outstanding place to stay. Its fame drew such celebrities as Henry and Edsel Ford, Carole Lombard, Amelia Earhart and the famous Tarzan, Johnny Weissmuller. There is also a reference to a visit by famous gangster, John Dillinger.

The news release goes on to say that in the ensuing years, the business fell on hard times and the hotel finally closed in 1974. Years of neglect took a toll on the hotel until it seemed the only option was to tear it down. A small group of community leaders began a monumental effort to save the hotel, and with great dedication and determination, they overcame every imaginable obstacle. A grand re-opening was celebrated in 1987. Since then it has operated as the LaFontaine Center and served the community as a beautiful place for receptions and other events, and is a comfortable place to live.