Things to do in Indiana

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jaj2276
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Things to do in Indiana

Post by jaj2276 » Sat Feb 23, 2019 5:21 pm

Last year my wife and I visited Iowa/Nebraska for our yearly trip. I asked the forum for things to do and was not disappointed. Things to do in Iowa/Nebraska

This year we have to do our trip over my wife's spring break so our trip will take place in late March instead of the summer. This year we picked Indiana. Any ideas/suggestions?

canderson
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by canderson » Sat Feb 23, 2019 5:41 pm

Do either of you like animals - specifically big cats (tigers, lions, etc?) If so go to the Exotic Feline Rescue Center about an hour or so west of Indianapolis. It is amazing. I took my wife there for her birthday and we rented the on-site cabin and it was one of the best experiences we’ve ever had actually.

http://www.exoticfelinerescuecenter.org/home.html

Indianapolis is ok for a day or two - the state museum is quite good, the art museum is fun, the Indianapolis Motor Speeedway tour is fun if you care at all about spectacles.

That’s all I got.

Valuethinker
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by Valuethinker » Sat Feb 23, 2019 5:51 pm

If you catch the recent independent film "Columbus" about Columbus Indiana it is a paeon to the modernist architecture of that city.

Apparently there are tours and to see the houses you do need to enrol on a tour.

It looked absolutely fascinating.

I can't copy the link but if you Google Citylab Columbus Indiana architecture you should get some more information.

HoosierJim
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by HoosierJim » Sat Feb 23, 2019 6:01 pm

If you are in the northern part of the state - go to the recently named national park - Indiana Dunes National Park. You can stay in the area inexpensively and take the train into Chicago for a daytrip.

bob60014
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by bob60014 » Sat Feb 23, 2019 6:13 pm

East of Bloomington and depending on your interests, the Brown County/ Nashville, Indiana area is interesting.

https://www.browncounty.com

wallenjs
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by wallenjs » Sat Feb 23, 2019 6:27 pm

Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Children's Museum of Indianapolis
White River State Park
Indianapolis Museum of Art
Benjamin Harrison Presidential Site
Medal of Honor Memorial
Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum
Red Skelton Museum of American Comedy
Virgil I. Gus Grissom Memorial Museum
Indiana Dunes National Park
Studebaker National Museum
Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial
Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum
Cole Porter's Birthplace
Conner Prairie
George Rogers Clark National Historical Park

SrGrumpy
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by SrGrumpy » Sat Feb 23, 2019 6:54 pm

Fairmount, Indiana - James Dean's birthplace and grave. I believe he still has family there. There's a presidential home in Indianapolis, one of the Harrisons, I believe - a nice neighborhood.

anil686
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by anil686 » Sat Feb 23, 2019 6:57 pm

The studebaker house in South Bend, IN use to have a restaurant. If you are into historical buildings and have an interest in either the car or the family, it is kind of cool to eat in the house - each of the rooms have a story if I remember right...

Hoosier
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by Hoosier » Sat Feb 23, 2019 7:27 pm

James Dean museum (east central)
Turkey Run state park (west central)
Clifty Falls state park and the drive along the Ohio river (south east)
French Lick and West Baden Springs resort (south west)

2nd some of the prior mentioned...
Auburn Cord museum (world class car museum)
Indianapolis motor speedway museum
Children’s Museum in Indianapolis... (fun for adults too)
Brown County state park
Indiana Dunes

anna_indiana
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by anna_indiana » Sat Feb 23, 2019 8:01 pm

Depends on your interests and where in the state you might be. You will almost certainly want a car, unless you restrict yourself solely to downtown Indianapolis. Focusing only on central (Indianapolis, Bloomington, Columbus):

Indianapolis
Arts and culture: Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra is excellent. Museums: Indianapolis Museum of Art (Newfields), Eiteljorg Museum (Western and American Indian art), Indiana State Museum, Children's Museum is a must if kids are part of the group. Indianapolis Zoo. Indiana Repertory Theater, Phoenix Theater, and smaller theater companies. Jazz at Chatterbox or Jazz Kitchen. Touring musicals and concerts in and out of the city.

History: Soldiers and Sailors Monument (view city from top of monument), Indiana War Memorial (museum inside) and the memorial mall north of the monument, Scottish Rite cathedral and main library historic building, many other public memorials/monuments, Crown Hill Cemetery (both for views of downtown and historical gravesites)

Sports: Pacers and Fever basketball, college basketball/other sports at Butler, IUPUI, etc., Indianapolis Motor Speedway and other racing-related industry out in Speedway, NCAA headquarters

Outdoors: Eagle Creek State Park. Holliday Park in Indy has some nice gorge hiking trails if the weather is decent and it's been dry enough. Rent bikes to ride the Cultural Trail downtown, or ride up the Monon Trail to head north a bit, or along Fall Creek trails. Walk along the downtown canal or White River State Park. 100 Acres sculpture park up at the IMA, north of downtown, is a nice visit in good weather. Butler University campus.

Food: tons of excellent restaurants in the city. West side for broader range of international cuisine.

Bloomington
Arts and culture: Indiana University's campus is lovely and nice to explore. IU Art Museum, Lilly Library (rare books library). Jacobs School of Music is world class; the Musical Arts Center hosts fully staged, professional-caliber operas, ballets, and other music ensembles many nights each month. There will be tons of free student recitals on at any given time (unless it's spring break, perhaps). Plus the usual array of lectures, guest speakers, etc. at a major university. Indiana University Auditorium for touring shows. Indiana University Cinema. Mathers Museum.

Sports: obviously, IU collegiate sports

Columbus/Brown County
+1 on Columbus architecture tours, including Miller House (need reserved tickets). Nashville is pleasant, if kitschy. Brown County State Park.

Topic Author
jaj2276
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by jaj2276 » Sat Feb 23, 2019 8:09 pm

Thanks for all these suggestions! We are road trip people so we tend to try and visit all parts of a state or at least enough to get a representative sample.

bhsince87
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by bhsince87 » Sat Feb 23, 2019 8:32 pm

jaj2276 wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 8:09 pm
Thanks for all these suggestions! We are road trip people so we tend to try and visit all parts of a state or at least enough to get a representative sample.
If you want to see it all, you should swing down in the southern part of the state, around New Albany. Essentially a suburb of Louisville, KY, and very much like a southern state! Some nice national forests down that way too.

And at the opposite extreme, is Gary, essentially a suburb of Chicago.

Lafayette, SouthBend, Kokomo, etc. are more midwestern in nature.

It's a very diverse state.
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WoodSpinner
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by WoodSpinner » Sat Feb 23, 2019 8:34 pm

Elkhart Indiana — RV Hall of Fame

https://www.rvmhhalloffame.org/

anna_indiana
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by anna_indiana » Sat Feb 23, 2019 8:44 pm

Notre Dame campus, if you're up north around South Bend.

Edit to add: and make sure to order pork tenderloin at some point (if you eat pork/meat).

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jaj2276
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by jaj2276 » Sat Feb 23, 2019 9:19 pm

anna_indiana wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 8:44 pm
Notre Dame campus, if you're up north around South Bend.

Edit to add: and make sure to order pork tenderloin at some point (if you eat pork/meat).
Eat pork tenderloin on the Notre Dame campus? Or eat sometime during the trip? Any suggestions on where to order it?

Gary, IN
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by Gary, IN » Sat Feb 23, 2019 9:40 pm

jaj2276 wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 9:19 pm
anna_indiana wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 8:44 pm
Notre Dame campus, if you're up north around South Bend.

Edit to add: and make sure to order pork tenderloin at some point (if you eat pork/meat).
Eat pork tenderloin on the Notre Dame campus? Or eat sometime during the trip? Any suggestions on where to order it?
Anywhere in the state. I'm still relatively new to the area, but this is clearly the state's signature dish. I'm partial to The Friendly Tavern's version - located in Zionsville, a bedroom community of Indy. Locals are incredibly friendly and this would actually be a great conversation starter - will probably net you a few other great recommendations during your stay. Enjoy!

MJS
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by MJS » Sun Feb 24, 2019 12:04 am

The Atlas Obscura list includes local foods as well as sights & sites.

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FrugalInvestor
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by FrugalInvestor » Sun Feb 24, 2019 12:10 am

Hoosier wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 7:27 pm
James Dean museum (east central)
Turkey Run state park (west central)
Clifty Falls state park and the drive along the Ohio river (south east)
French Lick and West Baden Springs resort (south west)

2nd some of the prior mentioned...
Auburn Cord museum (world class car museum)
Indianapolis motor speedway museum
Children’s Museum in Indianapolis... (fun for adults too)
Brown County state park
Indiana Dunes
I'll second French Lick/West Baden Springs Resort and Auburn, Cord and Duesenberg Museum. Both are real Dueseys!!
IGNORE the noise! | Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify. - Henry David Thoreau

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FrugalInvestor
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by FrugalInvestor » Sun Feb 24, 2019 12:30 am

jaj2276 wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 9:19 pm
anna_indiana wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 8:44 pm
Notre Dame campus, if you're up north around South Bend.

Edit to add: and make sure to order pork tenderloin at some point (if you eat pork/meat).
Eat pork tenderloin on the Notre Dame campus? Or eat sometime during the trip? Any suggestions on where to order it?
Eat a pork tenderloin near the Purdue campus at the Triple XXX (Root Beer stand) Family Restaurant.
https://www.triplexxxfamilyrestaurant.com/about/

While you're in West Lafayette/Lafayette visit the Purdue campus, the Tippecanoe Memorial Battlefield, Fort Ouiatenon, the Haan Museum, etc.

Before you leave stop at the Dog 'n Suds a real drive-in with car-hops (operating since the '50s) and have a Coney Dog and another great Root Beer.
https://dognsudsgreaterlafayette.com/

The old downtown area along the Wabash river is quaint and the courthouse is beautiful.

Have a great trip!!
IGNORE the noise! | Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify. - Henry David Thoreau

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SevenBridgesRoad
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by SevenBridgesRoad » Sun Feb 24, 2019 12:34 am

Lived in Indiana for five years. Great place to live and work. Lots to do. I second most of the suggestions so far and disagree with none, but would vote three or four times for the Auburn car museum, Columbus architecture tour (don't be cheap, take the paid tour), IU campus in Bloomington and the Indiana Dunes on Lake Michigan (just officially named the country's 61st National Park a few days ago!).

One oddball suggestion: if you are dining in downtown Indy, you might try St. Elmo Fire Steakhouse. Great food, but be sure and order the shrimp cocktail as an appetizer. While you're waiting for yours, look around the restaurant as others start to take their first bites: dip in a shrimp, bite, "That's delic...", then the hand shoots to the upper nose and between the eyes as the horseradish hits the sinuses hard! Tears. Oh my, the pain. Then, like an addict, you take another bite...

You'll notice the well-kept farms everywhere. Northeast Indiana has a large number of Amish, so you'll encounter horse drawn buggies on the roads and two-lane highways.
Last edited by SevenBridgesRoad on Sun Feb 24, 2019 12:35 am, edited 1 time in total.
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sport
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by sport » Sun Feb 24, 2019 12:34 am

Shipshewana Indiana. It's the largest Amish community in the US. Lots to see.
https://www.shipshewana.com/

tyrnup13
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by tyrnup13 » Sun Feb 24, 2019 6:54 am

I've lived in Indiana most of my life--if you are in the southern portion of the state, then here are some suggestions:

Bloomington is a college town and is a cultural oasis for the state. You should stroll through the campus and enjoy the restaurants downtown. If you like coffee, Hopscotch makes the best espresso based drinks, anywhere. I spend a lot of time in Seattle, and I'm always amazed how much better the coffee is at Hopscotch, versus a city that is known for such.

Brown County has an enormous mountain bike trail network and nice State Park. You could bring a bike and do some phenomenal single track. Nashville, IN is nearby--a bit touristy but quaint and entertaining for a couple of hours.

French Lick has West Baden Hotel, which is pretty cool to check out and maybe spend one night. On the drive between Bloomington and French Lick, you will pass through Amish country (Orleans). You could visit an Amish shop (wood, leather, blacksmith, etc) in the middle of nowhere. It is fascinating, really.

In Evansville, one could visit Gerst Haus, an old German-themed bar and restaurant. This is where you should get a pork tenderloin.

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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by Silverado » Sun Feb 24, 2019 6:59 am

jaj2276 wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 9:19 pm
anna_indiana wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 8:44 pm
Notre Dame campus, if you're up north around South Bend.

Edit to add: and make sure to order pork tenderloin at some point (if you eat pork/meat).
Eat pork tenderloin on the Notre Dame campus? Or eat sometime during the trip? Any suggestions on where to order it?
Shorty's in Columbus.

anna_indiana
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by anna_indiana » Sun Feb 24, 2019 9:43 am

jaj2276 wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 9:19 pm
anna_indiana wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 8:44 pm
Notre Dame campus, if you're up north around South Bend.

Edit to add: and make sure to order pork tenderloin at some point (if you eat pork/meat).
Eat pork tenderloin on the Notre Dame campus? Or eat sometime during the trip? Any suggestions on where to order it?
Sorry, I should have been clearer: sometime during the trip, not specifically at Notre Dame. As you're seeing from other comments, most cities will have someone who will be fighting for "best pork tenderloin in Indiana" bragging rights. Compare, for science!

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TnGuy
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by TnGuy » Sun Feb 24, 2019 10:10 am

If you are still there on April 1st (or later), Samara House designed by Frank Lloyd Wright will be open for tours. It is truly a special home to see.


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Nestegg_User
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by Nestegg_User » Sun Feb 24, 2019 6:02 pm

FrugalInvestor wrote:
Sun Feb 24, 2019 12:30 am
jaj2276 wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 9:19 pm
anna_indiana wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 8:44 pm
Notre Dame campus, if you're up north around South Bend.

Edit to add: and make sure to order pork tenderloin at some point (if you eat pork/meat).
Eat pork tenderloin on the Notre Dame campus? Or eat sometime during the trip? Any suggestions on where to order it?
Eat a pork tenderloin near the Purdue campus at the Triple XXX (Root Beer stand) Family Restaurant.
https://www.triplexxxfamilyrestaurant.com/about/

While you're in West Lafayette/Lafayette visit the Purdue campus, the Tippecanoe Memorial Battlefield, Fort Ouiatenon, the Haan Museum, etc.

Before you leave stop at the Dog 'n Suds a real drive-in with car-hops (operating since the '50s) and have a Coney Dog and another great Root Beer.
https://dognsudsgreaterlafayette.com/

The old downtown area along the Wabash river is quaint and the courthouse is beautiful.

Have a great trip!!

...another thing in the area is Wolf Park ( in Battle Ground, just north of Lafayette)
http://wolfpark.org/

(and Anna-Indiana, if you're gonna do something for science.... it should be done at "Undue Purversity", not at Notta Dame or I-You)

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FrugalInvestor
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by FrugalInvestor » Sun Feb 24, 2019 9:04 pm

Nestegg_User wrote:
Sun Feb 24, 2019 6:02 pm
FrugalInvestor wrote:
Sun Feb 24, 2019 12:30 am
jaj2276 wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 9:19 pm
anna_indiana wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 8:44 pm
Notre Dame campus, if you're up north around South Bend.

Edit to add: and make sure to order pork tenderloin at some point (if you eat pork/meat).
Eat pork tenderloin on the Notre Dame campus? Or eat sometime during the trip? Any suggestions on where to order it?
Eat a pork tenderloin near the Purdue campus at the Triple XXX (Root Beer stand) Family Restaurant.
https://www.triplexxxfamilyrestaurant.com/about/

While you're in West Lafayette/Lafayette visit the Purdue campus, the Tippecanoe Memorial Battlefield, Fort Ouiatenon, the Haan Museum, etc.

Before you leave stop at the Dog 'n Suds a real drive-in with car-hops (operating since the '50s) and have a Coney Dog and another great Root Beer.
https://dognsudsgreaterlafayette.com/

The old downtown area along the Wabash river is quaint and the courthouse is beautiful.

Have a great trip!!

...another thing in the area is Wolf Park ( in Battle Ground, just north of Lafayette)
http://wolfpark.org/

(and Anna-Indiana, if you're gonna do something for science.... it should be done at "Undue Purversity", not at Notta Dame or I-You)
Wolf Park is very close to the Tippecanoe Memorial Battlefield.

Ever hear the saying "Tippecanoe and Tyler Too?" Tippecanoe referred to William Henry Harrison who was a hero of the battle of Tippecanoe in 1811 and was a presidential candidate in 1840. Tyler was his running mate.
IGNORE the noise! | Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify. - Henry David Thoreau

Doohop65
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by Doohop65 » Mon Feb 25, 2019 7:15 am

Skip Gary unless you take a gun. I made the mistake of letting my cheap friend book a hotel for us once on a road trip. Never again. I was not even a little impressed.

If you are interested in agriculture take in fair oaks farms. They have spent a lot of money on creating a great experience, especially if you have children. https://fofarms.com

Atilla
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by Atilla » Mon Feb 25, 2019 7:42 am

The George Rogers Clark memorial in Vincennes is good for an afternoon. The memorial and the bridge to Illinois were WPA projects built in the depression. There is also a museum/visitors center built in the 70s. And there are actual Revolutionary War graves next to the church right there.

Then you have the home of William Henry Harrison who was territorial governor and later (briefly) US President.
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Sheepdog
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by Sheepdog » Mon Feb 25, 2019 8:39 am

tyrnup13 wrote:
Sun Feb 24, 2019 6:54 am
I've lived in Indiana most of my life--if you are in the southern portion of the state, then here are some suggestions:

Bloomington is a college town and is a cultural oasis for the state. You should stroll through the campus and enjoy the restaurants downtown. If you like coffee, Hopscotch makes the best espresso based drinks, anywhere. I spend a lot of time in Seattle, and I'm always amazed how much better the coffee is at Hopscotch, versus a city that is known for such.

Brown County has an enormous mountain bike trail network and nice State Park. You could bring a bike and do some phenomenal single track. Nashville, IN is nearby--a bit touristy but quaint and entertaining for a couple of hours.

French Lick has West Baden Hotel, which is pretty cool to check out and maybe spend one night. On the drive between Bloomington and French Lick, you will pass through Amish country (Orleans). You could visit an Amish shop (wood, leather, blacksmith, etc) in the middle of nowhere. It is fascinating, really.

In Evansville, one could visit Gerst Haus, an old German-themed bar and restaurant. This is where you should get a pork tenderloin.
As a 47 year resident of Indiana who has seen all corners of this state you have received good suggestions on what to see in this state including those in these suggestions. In the western part of the state as you travel down US41 from Evansville you can add in Terre Haute(north of Vincennes) on I 70. This revived city is the home of 4 higher education institutions...Indiana State, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, Ivy Tech Community College and St. Marys of the Woods College. The latter especially has a beautiful campus founded in 1840 https://spsmw.org/visit/. It looks like old Europe. Enjoy the (cuteness) of their Alpaca farm. Then In Terre Haute is the Swope Art Museum (American art) (free), Children's Museum, multiple public art throughout the city and the Candles Holocaust Museum, founded by Eva Kor, a survivor, who you may possibly meet there https://candlesholocaustmuseum.org/ . Try Stables Steakhouse for quality steaks in interesting surroundings (a recovered draft horse stable from the period when beer was made here in the 1800s and early 1900s.)
It's not what you gather, but what you scatter which tells what kind of life you have lived---Helen Walton

MI_bogle
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by MI_bogle » Mon Feb 25, 2019 8:56 am

jaj2276 wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 9:19 pm
anna_indiana wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 8:44 pm
Notre Dame campus, if you're up north around South Bend.

Edit to add: and make sure to order pork tenderloin at some point (if you eat pork/meat).
Eat pork tenderloin on the Notre Dame campus? Or eat sometime during the trip? Any suggestions on where to order it?
If you are going to be up in the South Bend area or checking out the Indiana Dunes National Park, make sure to swing by Michigan City and check out the lighthouse on Lake Michigan - it's pretty iconic and a very short drive from the new national park. If it's a clear day you can see Chicago in the background with the lighthouse in the foreground

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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by bengal22 » Mon Feb 25, 2019 9:24 am

John Dillinger grave site, crown hill cemetery, Indy

Children's museum, Indy

Indy raceway museum, Indy
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wabbajack
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by wabbajack » Mon Feb 25, 2019 10:39 am

Lived almost 6 years in Indianapolis. Seen about half the things people have suggested. They range from mediocre to good, but nothing impressive if you've seen real wonders. A lot of the museums and parks are good for the Midwest, but ultimately pale in comparison to the really impressive museums (think Chicago) and parks (think states out west - Dakotas, Nevada, etc.).

I'm guessing the OP is retired and has all the time in the world, so they aren't picky about finding oddball things to do. I'll do my part to add some value to this conversation by sharing some good food options in the Indy area:
- Caplinger's Fresh Catch: the fish sandwich is good, but what you really want is their king salmon. Ask them to make it for you by the pound. Costs $25, and tastes better than $50 meals in actual restaurants.
- Pho Real: Skip the traditional Vietnamese stuff you'd order, and get their Laotian cuisine.
- Janko's Little Zagreb (Bloomington): good meats.
- Mama's Korean BBQ (Bloomington): have some of the best Asian food with China princelings.

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FrugalInvestor
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by FrugalInvestor » Mon Feb 25, 2019 10:54 am

wabbajack wrote:
Mon Feb 25, 2019 10:39 am
Lived almost 6 years in Indianapolis. Seen about half the things people have suggested. They range from mediocre to good, but nothing impressive if you've seen real wonders. A lot of the museums and parks are good for the Midwest, but ultimately pale in comparison to the really impressive museums (think Chicago) and parks (think states out west - Dakotas, Nevada, etc.).
We've found that things don't need to be spectacular to be interesting. As a matter of fact, some of the more obscure places we've been and things we've seen, especially those with historical significance, have been the most enlightening and memorable. Another advantage to these places is that they tend not to be overrun by people which is typical for the more well known sites.
IGNORE the noise! | Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify. - Henry David Thoreau

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wabbajack
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by wabbajack » Mon Feb 25, 2019 11:14 am

FrugalInvestor wrote:
Mon Feb 25, 2019 10:54 am
We've found that things don't need to be spectacular to be interesting. As a matter of fact, some of the more obscure places we've been and things we've seen, especially those with historical significance, have been the most enlightening and memorable. Another advantage to these places is that they tend not to be overrun by people which is typical for the more well known sites.
Sure, you can find wonder in the mundane. The trick to not be overrun by people is to go early and off season. I live 10 mins away from Eagle Creek (municipal) park. One month ago, I visited early in the morning and was treated with a spectacular winter view. The water was frozen, the frost was hanging from trees, the sun was bright, the snow was shining, etc.

Which brings me back to whether the OP is retired and has all the time in the world. I've been to the quaint things Indiana has to offer - covered bridge, Christmas markets, art festivals, etc. If you only have a certain number of days to sightsee, a lot of the suggestions simply aren't worth taking time off for. If I had a long weekend to spare, I'd be going to Chicago or somewhere in Michigan.

MP173
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by MP173 » Mon Feb 25, 2019 11:33 am

I have lived in Indiana since 1977, after going to college there...so I think this can be said without hurting any feelings about the state.

There really isnt much to do here for entertainment....unless you enjoy wandering around some towns and taking in the local flavor.

Indiana Dunes - there is only so much you can do at a sand dune. I live 20 minutes away and havent been there in decades.
Michigan City - interesting rebuilding going on there, particularly downtown arts section. Nice park on Lake Michigan and Fish Camp is an excellent restaurant, as is Fiddleheads. Lots of 2nd homes/condos going in as Chicago people are "discovering" it is only an hour away and is on Lake Michigan.
Fair Oaks Dairy on I 65 is becoming a great "lets stop here for a couple of hours" spot on the boring drive on I65. If you grew up on a farm, there is no need to stop, except to pickup cheese and perhaps lunch.
Monon - Whistle Stop railroad museum and diner. If you like railroads...which I do. An amazing private collection of neat old stuff. Pretty good food.
Northeast Indiana is nice...really nice with hundreds of natural lakes and a huge Amish population. Stop for pies and treats at roadside stands and marvel at the Amish way of life.
Bloomington - Nashville - Bedford area is very pleasant...university town, artsy area, and decent scenery.
Columbus - architecture is nice.... been discussed above.
Madison - an old Ohio River city....nearby is Hanover College with great views of the Ohio River. Clifty Falls State Park is worth a visit.

I could go on and on, but there is nothing spectacular, BUT...lots of small town flavor.

Now, that being said, it is a very good state to live in. Low taxes, balanced budgets, pretty good schools, friendly people. Living 40 miles from Chicago I get the best of both worlds....quality of living is family friendly but culture exists nearby. Our state universities are solid and well respected and the private schools are usually faith based and also provide quality education. The basketball in this state is outstanding. As mentioned previously the pork tenderloin sandwitches are a treat. Just about every town has a summer festival. Golf courses are plentiful and very inexpensive.

I am proud to be a Hoosier.

Ed

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dm200
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by dm200 » Mon Feb 25, 2019 11:45 am

canderson wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 5:41 pm
Do either of you like animals - specifically big cats (tigers, lions, etc?) If so go to the Exotic Feline Rescue Center about an hour or so west of Indianapolis. It is amazing. I took my wife there for her birthday and we rented the on-site cabin and it was one of the best experiences we’ve ever had actually.

http://www.exoticfelinerescuecenter.org/home.html

Indianapolis is ok for a day or two - the state museum is quite good, the art museum is fun, the Indianapolis Motor Speeedway tour is fun if you care at all about spectacles.

That’s all I got.
In Indianapolis, stay at the hotel in the old train station. Sounds of trains piped into the room areas. Some train sounds are real. https://www.tripadvisor.com/LocationPho ... diana.html

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jaj2276
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by jaj2276 » Tue Feb 26, 2019 3:57 pm

OP here. We aren't retired (late 30s/early 40s) but simply take 5-7 days out of the year to go and visit a state we haven't been to yet. We went to Iowa/Nebraska last year and had a great time even though a lot of the attractions weren't "world class."

Due to us closing on a house, we have to go a bit shorter this time around (normally we would do closer to 7 days). And since we're going the end of March which is considered "winter" season, some of the suggestions weren't available to us.

I think we're going to do (not necessarily in this order but flying in to O'Hare):

Exotic Feline Rescue Center
Indiana Dunes National Park
Bear Distillery/eXplore Brown County
Conner Prairie
South Bend
French Lick
Fair Oaks Farm
Tipeecanoe
Salt Creek Ranch (horseback riding)
Indianapolis

open_circuit
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by open_circuit » Tue Feb 26, 2019 4:11 pm

jaj2276 wrote:
Tue Feb 26, 2019 3:57 pm
OP here. We aren't retired (late 30s/early 40s) but simply take 5-7 days out of the year to go and visit a state we haven't been to yet. We went to Iowa/Nebraska last year and had a great time even though a lot of the attractions weren't "world class."

Due to us closing on a house, we have to go a bit shorter this time around (normally we would do closer to 7 days). And since we're going the end of March which is considered "winter" season, some of the suggestions weren't available to us.

I think we're going to do (not necessarily in this order but flying in to O'Hare):

Exotic Feline Rescue Center
Indiana Dunes National Park
Bear Distillery/eXplore Brown County
Conner Prairie
South Bend
French Lick
Fair Oaks Farm
Tipeecanoe
Salt Creek Ranch (horseback riding)
Indianapolis
I came to mention Conner Prairie, but I see it is on your list already. I'll give it another vote.

I lived near Indianapolis for a while in my youth, and I have fond memories of Conner Prairie, the Children's Museum, and the Indianapolis Zoo. I hear St Elmo's is the place to eat if you are in Indianapolis.

gclancer
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by gclancer » Tue Feb 26, 2019 6:27 pm

Haven’t seen anyone mention Winona Lake (https://villageatwinona.com) yet. I’ve lived in the Midwest my entire life, and it’s as cool of a Midwestern small town as I’ve ever come across.

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SevenBridgesRoad
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by SevenBridgesRoad » Tue Feb 26, 2019 10:22 pm

gclancer wrote:
Tue Feb 26, 2019 6:27 pm
Haven’t seen anyone mention Winona Lake (https://villageatwinona.com) yet. I’ve lived in the Midwest my entire life, and it’s as cool of a Midwestern small town as I’ve ever come across.
We agree. Had friends with a lake cottage there. Beautiful, very nice. Near Warsaw, IN, a decent size bigger town. Here's the strange thing about Warsaw (yes, Warsaw, Indiana): most of the giant orthopedic prosthetic device companies (knee and hip replacement hardware) are headquartered there. What?!

In NE Indiana, more beautiful lakes with lake front cottages than you can shake a stick at. Lots and lots of money there.
There are stars in the Southern sky | And if ever you decide you should go | There is a taste of time sweetened honey | Down the Seven Bridges Road

bhsince87
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by bhsince87 » Tue Feb 26, 2019 11:29 pm

jaj2276 wrote:
Tue Feb 26, 2019 3:57 pm
OP here. We aren't retired (late 30s/early 40s) but simply take 5-7 days out of the year to go and visit a state we haven't been to yet. We went to Iowa/Nebraska last year and had a great time even though a lot of the attractions weren't "world class."

Due to us closing on a house, we have to go a bit shorter this time around (normally we would do closer to 7 days). And since we're going the end of March which is considered "winter" season, some of the suggestions weren't available to us.

I think we're going to do (not necessarily in this order but flying in to O'Hare):

Exotic Feline Rescue Center
Indiana Dunes National Park
Bear Distillery/eXplore Brown County
Conner Prairie
South Bend
French Lick
Fair Oaks Farm
Tipeecanoe
Salt Creek Ranch (horseback riding)
Indianapolis

If you're going to see the Feline Rescue place, you might also want to check this one out. Felines and more.

https://www.facebook.com/WildlifeinNeed.Inc/
Retirement: When you reach a point where you have enough. Or when you've had enough.

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tainted-meat
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Location: Kentucky

Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by tainted-meat » Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:20 am

Lincoln Boyhood home in Lincoln City, IN (Southern, IN) & Holiday World, Santa Claus, IN.

Others have mentioned French Lick and West Baden, IN - only 45 minutes away from these two spots.

All good options.

Andyrunner
Posts: 708
Joined: Thu May 03, 2012 9:14 am

Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by Andyrunner » Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:44 am

Even if you aren't a Notre Dame fan, the campus is amazing. You obviously won't be there for football season, but still the campus is beautiful.

SueG5123
Posts: 128
Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2016 8:41 pm

Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by SueG5123 » Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:52 am

In Indianapolis, there is a tribute monument to the USS Indianapolis that commemorates the loss of the ship in WWII. A real not-to-miss.

Nova1967
Posts: 200
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by Nova1967 » Wed Feb 27, 2019 11:11 am

tainted-meat wrote:
Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:20 am
Lincoln Boyhood home in Lincoln City, IN (Southern, IN) & Holiday World, Santa Claus, IN.

Others have mentioned French Lick and West Baden, IN - only 45 minutes away from these two spots.

All good options.
Whats so great about French Lick other than the fact its where Larry Bird is from?

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birdog
Posts: 220
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by birdog » Wed Feb 27, 2019 11:50 am

If you’re a car guy, the Labor Day weekend Auburn-Cord-Duesenberg festival and classic car auction in Auburn (northeast Indiana) is a great time.

HoosierJim
Posts: 570
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by HoosierJim » Wed Feb 27, 2019 11:55 am

Also, as in most states the Indiana state park system is great. Some have lodging, camping, and nearby places to stay.

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Fredfig
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by Fredfig » Wed Feb 27, 2019 12:03 pm

If you are swinging through South Bend, I agree with earlier comments that Notre Dame is worth a trip. The campus is gorgeous, the church on the campus is breathtaking, and many of the buildings of interest are generally open to explore. A nice restaurant around the area is Corn Dance, it's reasonably priced for the quality. Barnaby's is a pizza place that's local I believe and has a good vibe. A popular spot these days is the Evil Czech brewery, which has a wonderful Sunday brunch small plate special.

Bloomington is a very cool, cultural town. Tons of good food, a beautiful campus to walk and see. I'd swing by for the food at the very least.

Maybe I shouldn't have been thinking about recommendations right before lunch...
"Don't invest for yourself; invest so that you can do good for you family, your community, and your world." - Carl Ackermann

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FrugalInvestor
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Re: Things to do in Indiana

Post by FrugalInvestor » Wed Feb 27, 2019 12:19 pm

Nova1967 wrote:
Wed Feb 27, 2019 11:11 am
tainted-meat wrote:
Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:20 am
Lincoln Boyhood home in Lincoln City, IN (Southern, IN) & Holiday World, Santa Claus, IN.

Others have mentioned French Lick and West Baden, IN - only 45 minutes away from these two spots.

All good options.
Whats so great about French Lick other than the fact its where Larry Bird is from?
West Baden Springs hotel/resort. It has an intriguing history and is beautiful and awe inspiring in person.
IGNORE the noise! | Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify. - Henry David Thoreau

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