Humans of ‘The Region’ – Northwest Indiana

Inspired by the Humans of New York photographer Brandon Staton { } “Humans of New York began as a photography project in 2010. The initial goal was to photograph 10,000 New Yorkers on the street, and create an exhaustive catalogue of the city’s inhabitants.”  Loving Brandon’s project we felt compelled to start documenting all of the wonderful people that make up “The Region” as it is known to so many.

Northwest Indiana is comprised of Lake, Porter, LaPorte, Newton and Jasper counties in Indiana. This region neighbors Lake Michigan and is part of the Chicago metropolitan area. Northwest Indiana is the state’s second largest urban area after the Indianapolis metropolitan area.  This page will be devoted to all of the people in these counties… posting photos of all we meet in ‘da region’ as it is just a great mix of cultures and ethnicity.  Be sure to check back often if we ask you if we can snap your photo!

My first photo just has to be my dad; Nick Bella, 95 years old, a region person from Gary originally and worked at Gary Produce, Scot Lad Foods, and WiseWay Foods for many years.  He had 42 years in the fresh produce industry from wholesale to retail!  Now retired and enjoying life at Wittenberg Village.  His smile here is because Jodi and I brought him a bowl of Lemon Rice soup!  Although Lemon Rice is not Italian, like my dad… it is a region favorite from our friends in the Greek community!

Also known as “Da Region,” It is the section of the Chicago Metropolitan Area that overflows past the Indiana boarder. From a cultural stand point, the region is where the “ethnic” slums of South Side Chicago meets “white corn-fed hillbilly” Indiana, creating very diverse and unique place that is by far better than any other location in Indiana. According to The Chicago Tribune, Lake County is a included in the Chicago Metropolitan Area, but the TRUE region is located only in the Northwest area of Lake County IN; consisting of Whiting, East Chicago, Hammond, Munster, Highland, Griffith, Gary, and the North sides of Dyer, Shererville, and Marrillville. The South sides of Dyer, Shererville, and Marrillville along with St. John, Crown Point, Hobart, and Lake Station (aka Snake Nation) are only considered Semi-Region (People from there can still consider themselves “regionites,” but must bow down to anyone from the TRUE region). People from Porter County, La Porte County, and Southern areas of Lake County such as Lowell, who tell people they are from the region and try to gain of the region’s mystique, are ABSOLUTLY NOT from the region. A solid “rule of thumb” is: if you are in Lake County IN, there are multiple African Americans and Latinos living within a 1 mile radius of you, and there are no corn fields in sight; you are then in the TRUE REGION.

Everyone from the region is Chicago Bears, Bulls, Blackhawks, White Socks and/or Cubs fans. People from the region LOVE Chicago sports and are DISGUSTED by the thought of rooting for the Indianapolis Colts or Pacers.

There are many advantages for kids from the region who attend state-colleges such as Indiana University, Purdue University, Ball State University, or IUPUI. Region kids are blessed with the double advantage of being able to mingle with prissy rich kids from Indianapolis and Fort Wayne, yet have more “street credibility” than anyone else in Indiana. If you are from the region, kids from Fort Wayne and Indianapolis are automatically jealous of you because you come from far bigger metropolitan area and are more culturally equipped to make friends with out-of-state kids from Chicago, New York, New England, and Southern California. If you are from the region, all out-of-state kids who attend Indiana state-colleges are automatically jealous of you because you possess the FULL FLEDGED RIGHT to say you are from Chicago, yet you pay in-state tuition.

So we hope you enjoy seeing these photos of people from all around our region!  We will post them to our Facebook page bellaphotographs so you can tag people you see posted, share, and comment.

This is Kate – you will see her managing things at Asparagus Restaurant in Merrillville.  Asparagus is a unique Asian fusion restaurant and lounge.  It is rooted in the authenticity and business experience of this well-established and highly respected restaurant family from Vietnam.  Visit their website for more info: 

This is Mike – from In Good Company Property Managementhe said he was in Colorado last week and didn’t shave!  

This is Doloris – Always a friendly smile at Wittenberg Village. 

This is LIZ – she works for the Catholic Diocese of NW Indiana.  She was volunteering at the annual Opportunity Enterprises annual gala where she used to work!

Humans of the Region – This is Dr. Marc, DDS and Whitney – Dr. Marc has been in Hobart for decades serving all of the region.  Patient is a family member.

This is Christopher – a chef at The Farmhouse Restaurant at Fair Oaks Farms.  Yep, he’s a region person all his life and landed the job at the new Farmhouse Restaurant when they opened.

Pictured here is Dr. Nicholas Howard with dental assistant Tiffany and patient Madelyn.  

Pictured above is Anaceli – and yes, she always has this lovely smile on her face!  From Anaceli, “May your glass be half full!”

Linda and Lisa are sisters… from ‘The Region’ shown here celebrating 50 years of service for Tradewinds where Lisa works.  The event was a huge success held at Horseshoe Casino in Hammond last week.  



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