Downtown Cassopolis event space gets new owners

Published 1:49 pm Thursday, January 20, 2022

CASSOPOLIS — When Amanda McCord, 29, and Caleb Breitenbach, 26, fell in love, they did so while traveling between their homes in South Bend and Mendon, Michigan, respectively.

Along the way, they found another love — the village of Cassopolis, which served as a halfway point for the couple.

“Every time we drove through, we noticed the updated sidewalks and the beach, and we would think, ‘Oh, this town is so cute,’” McCord recalled with a smile.

“We love Cassopolis,” Breitenbach added. “We fell in love with it over the summer. We thought it was a cute area, and it really caught our eye. We appreciated the tight-knit community, the small-town vibes.”

Now, the couple not only resides in Cassopolis, but they are also building a future in the downtown business community.

McCord and Breitenbach are the new owners of Turtle Lodge, an event space located at 105 N. Broadway St. The building also includes office and apartment space.

The couple closed on the building Jan. 3, and since then they have been preparing to begin remodeling and redecorating the space.

“We want to modernize it a bit,” Breitenbach said.

“We want to bring closer to our taste, but we don’t want to get rid of the history here,” McCord added. “We want this to be a space for the community.”

Though both McCord and Breitenbach have full-time jobs, McCord said they have always been drawn to the idea of owning their own business. When they saw the for sale sign on Turtle Lodge as they were driving through town one day, the couple knew they needed to take the opportunity presented to them.

Now that they have the keys in hand, McCord and Breitenbach have big dreams of hosting both private and community events, such as the Cassopolis Farmers Market, which will be hosted at the lodge Feb. 19, March 19 and April 23.

“We want to use this as a community center and event hall,” McCord said. “My goal is to get concerts going as well. … My big goal is to host nonprofit events every Saturday, so we can give back to the community. We want to give back to the community, but also be the go-to place for bridal showers, baby showers, Christmas parties, any smaller event.”

Though McCord and Breitenbach expect the complete remodel to take several months, McCord said their goal would always remain the same.

“We want to give the community what they need,” she said.