The other night, I was doing my best to describe to a friend where to find a specific address on Range Line Road. Trying to explain major land marks, I started with the Indiana Design Center. That didn’t register with my friend, so I picked two more spots. Nope, couldn’t place them but he said, “Where is it from Carmel Welding?” Everyone around the table knew exactly where Carmel Welding was located. I guess local’s knowledge of its exact location should not be surprising since it has been operating at 550 S. Range Line Road since 1948. Some 64 years doing much, much more than just welding, but always in Carmel.
The reason I bring up Carmel Welding is not just because it is a famous landmark on Range Line Road, but because it is a very successful business which has stood the test of time. I appreciate it and I appreciate the experience I recently had shortly after stepping across its threshold just days after the blizzard of 2012.
But first, I must mention the courteous, well-mannered and amazing Jasin Boys. The Jasin Boys are my neighbors expertly parented by Jon and Mindy Jasin. Traveling home from vacation and hearing about the snow in Indianapolis, I dreaded facing a driveway full of the white stuff and the effort it would take to clear it. But, as I rounded the corner, I was shocked to see bare cement. What a great surprise those Jasin Boys gave me. If I had a daughter their age, I surely would talk to Mr. Jasin about a fatted calf.
But, realizing I just dodged a bullet, I decided it was time to replace the snow blower which had previously retired itself. I went to the usual places one might expect to find snow blowers, paint, garden supplies and candy.
But, I also went to Carmel Welding. Not a big box, but an intimate, historical, get down to business place where the person telling you about the horsepower and pitch control might just be the owner. Four generations of the Wiggam family have pulled a paycheck from Carmel Welding and helped it to become the oldest business in Carmel. Currently, Bill Wiggam and Bill Wiggam, Jr. are the owners and you can surely find them toiling away on most business days.
Probably not a revelation to long-time Carmel residents, but I thoroughly enjoyed the small town, humanized buying experience. It would not have surprised me to see Andy Griffith walk through the front door, which is why I am sure to go back every chance I get.