Things to Do in Fort Wayne and Beyond

Willie’s replacing Bob’s in Woodburn

Changes also come to The Venice, Flashback Live

Bob's Restaurant in Woodburn will soon open as Willie's Cafe.

Dean Jackson

Whatzup Features Writer

Published November 2, 2022

The name has changed, but much of what made Bob’s Restaurant in Woodburn an east Allen County staple for decades will be back as Willie’s Cafe II

Kim Campbell, who owns Willie’s on North Anthony Boulevard in Fort Wayne, has expanded to 22031 Woodburn Road with her sons. Other family members will be actively involved. That’s good, because she wants family dining to be the cornerstone of everything they do. The restaurant has undergone a makeover with a new look, new equipment, and a new sign.

Campbell said the interior will be similar to the other restaurant except that the Woodburn eatery will “resemble a country farmhouse.” 

“We’ll have the same fish, tenderloins, meatloaf, beef and noodles,” Campbell said. And don’t worry, the legendary pies are slated for a comeback. The signature Big Chief and Little Chief burgers, a tribute to the hometown team the Woodlan Warriors, are also in the works . 

Local businesses like Tim Didier Meats will be anchors of their menu. 

It’s a little too soon to talk about new menu items, but Campbell did say they will have broasted chicken. Right now, they are targeting a Dec. 1 opening. But, don’t be surprised if it comes sooner. 

They’ll start with Monday-Saturday hours of 7 a.m.- 8 p.m. and 8 a.m.-2 p.m. on Sundays.

“We’ll welcome everyone in and treat them like family,” she said.

Dupont Hospital cafe will cure what ails you

With the somewhat recent focus on hospitality, hospitals and medical centers have been emphasizing customer experience. 

That’s true of the cafe at Dupont Hospital. The price is right, the food is served fresh, and the menu is new almost daily. You can easily get a meal, side item, and dessert for under $10. 

Recently, I enjoyed ham and cheddar on pretzel bun sandwiches, a pub burger, potato wedges, and stunningly good pies for about $2. My favorite is the oh so smooth mint chocolate pie. The blueberry pie is a pretty good challenger. It’s great for snack items like fruits and cheese cups. 

You can usually get it in five minutes or less, hot! The tea and coffee is always free. 

There is more than enough space for eating for a informal lunch or it’s no hassle to get it to go. 

Special Veuve Clicquot dinner at Ruth’s Chris

A special five-course dinner called the Veuve Clicquot Tastemaker Dinner is scheduled from 6:30-9 p.m. Nov. 14 at Ruth’s Chris Steak House in downtown Fort Wayne. 

Courses being served are a prime skirt steak with smashed rosemary red bliss potatoes and soy-ginger chimichurri paired with champagne rosé. The main course will be filet with shishito pepper butter crust and paired with Veuve Clicquot Champagne 2012 Vintage. Dessert will be coconut cake with roasted pineapple cream filling, brûlée pineapple and passion fruit coulis. 

The cost is $150 a person. To register, email

The Venice is closing … or is it?

We’ve had some reports that The Venice on Goshen Road is closed. 

According to Facebook, that’s not exactly the case. Call it a reimagining. The longtime building has been sold, but the owners of The Venice still have the name and the liquor license. 

So, we are tracking this and will have more soon.

Igloos aren’t just for Eskimos

Country Heritage Winery is accepting reservations for its popular cold weather staple: igloos. 

With seating for six to eight adults, it’s a cozy way to enjoy games, cards, family, and friends no matter how cold it is outside. There are also food and drinks for up to two hours at a time. 

Reservations are available for Monday-Thursday. Premium reservations with a dedicated server are available Friday-Sunday.

Flashback gets new look and name

The venue formerly know as Flashback Live at 4201 N. Wells St. held its grand opening as Charlie’s Place with a Halloween Party on Saturday, Oct. 29.

Hours are 4 p.m.-midnight, Monday-Thursday; 11 a.m.-whenever the party stops Friday-Saturday; and 11 a.m.-midnight on Sunday.

Off the Eaten Path is the Whatzup weekly column that covers Northeast Indiana’s restaurant and food news. Send your news items to


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