By Emma Bowen Meyer
For The Herald Bulletin
---- — PENDLETON – While some parents cannot control the urge to dress their twins to match, Ray Summeier was consistently clothed in Colts garb whereas his twin brother donned Bears apparel. The tradition bred a Colts fan of epic proportions.
“My basement is the ultimate man cave,” said Ray, owner of Trustworthy Land Title. “I have the best wife ever and she let me do whatever I wanted with it. I wanted a Colts heaven.”
His description doesn’t do the space justice. Colts players themselves likely have less memorabilia than what graces the walls of his walk-out basement. Fans of other teams are sometimes unable to descend into the blue-and-white sea of team spirit.
Royal blue carpet is not often paired with royal blue furniture, but in the sports haven of a true fan, the look works. In addition to a couch and two recliners, horse shoe emblems appear on the gaming chairs, comfy rolling chairs, barstools, rugs, pillows, banners and even the ping pong paddles.
“We have big parties during every away game,” said Dawn, Ray’s wife and partner in the business. “Last time we had over 40 people here.”
Home games leave the man cave deserted as the season ticket holders are at Lucas Oil Stadium.
“Not only have we picked up a lot of this stuff along the way, friends and family are always trying to buy us something we don’t already have,” said Ray. “It’s kind of a challenge.”
But the entire house isn’t devoted to football. The couple built the home six years ago when they decided living in the Geist area simply wasn’t for them.
“We both grew up in the country,” said Ray. “We didn’t having close neighbors. We saw this land and fell in love with it.”
Located near Maple Ridge Elementary, the two acres curve down a hill, making the yard surrounded by fields even more private. Even though they enjoy plenty of comfortable space between them and their neighbors, the Summeiers take pleasure in spending time with them.
“We love our neighbors,” said Dawn. “They are good people.”
“The outside is so peaceful here,” said Ray. “We have cocktail parties with the neighbors and spend time by the pool relaxing.”
Experience helped with the construction of the home.
“I built this same house 20 years ago in Elkhart,” said Dawn. “I pulled out the blueprints and showed them to an architect. Some things had to be changed because of today’s codes, but the feel is the same – except he bumped out two sides of the house.”
Openness was one of Dawn’s primary concerns. Another was making use of every possible space in the 6000 square foot house.
“Attic space is wasted space,” she said. “I turned what was an attic in the other house into a bonus room. I made sure that every area was being used for something and nothing was wasted.”
A second detached garage sits nearby and houses Ray’s car collection – a passion he intends to follow. Finished with Indiana winters, Ray and Dawn are moving to Florida where they plan to open an exotic classic car lot.
While they intend to leave the cold weather in their wake, they will not turn their backs on their favorite team.
“We will be keeping our season tickets and plan to come back for at least half of the games,” said Ray. “We will wear our gear down there, just like we do when we travel to away games.”
Each week, Emma Bowen Meyer features a Madison County home. If you know of a home that should be showcased, send an e-mail to email@example.com.