Goshen News, Goshen, IN

October 3, 2013

Menno Travel marks 60 years


— GOSHEN — Menno Travel in downtown Goshen, welcomed a select group of clients to a client appreciation event in the parking lot behind its office on Tuesday as part of a 60th anniversary celebration.

Menno Travel Co-Owners Doug Risser and Geof Landis, along with employees and welcomed guests, celebrated the success of the agency over the past six decades.

“The idea of a Goshen office for Menno Travel started in the early 1950s (because) the Akron, Pa, office of Menno Travel Service was handling significant business in Goshen,” Risser explained. “Harold Swartzendruber from Mennonite Mutual Aid (MMA) had previously worked with Menno Travel in Akron and was charged with establishing a Goshen office.”

So, on Oct. 2, 1953, Swartzendruber made contact with Cunard Steamship Company and later with Holland America Line and Menno Travel’s Goshen office was established in shared offices with MMA on South Eighth Street.

TWA provided the first airline appointment and Pan Am followed, Risser said. Swartzendruber and Lena Fricke ran the agency in shared offices with MMA until Menno Travel moved to its current downtown location, 210 S. Main Street, with John Hertzler as manager in the 1960s.

Risser joined Menno Travel in 1972 and became manager in 1980. Landis joined Menno Travel in 1982 and became part of the management team in 1984. Menno Travel joined the American Express Travel Representative Network in 1993. Risser and Landis purchased the company in 1995 from Ralph Gunden and Ora Yoder.

Menno Travel/American Express employs 22 people who specialize in corporate, vacation, humanitarian, group and incentive travel. Menno Travel also offers northern Indiana’s only full-service foreign currency exchange.

More information on the company is available at mennotrav.com.