By Rachel Hill-Ponko
Indiana Historical Society
In just its second year, the Indiana Historical Society’s Festival of Trees is growing in both popularity and scope. This year, around 50 elaborately themed trees will be on display at the Eugene and Marilyn Glick Indiana History Center at 450 W. Ohio St., up from 25 trees in 2014. The winter wonderland opens on Nov. 27, 2015 and runs through Jan. 2, 2016.
“Last year’s Festival of Trees brought thousands of people into the History Center to see themed trees that were whimsical and reflected our unique Hoosier character and culture, ” said John A. Herbst, IHS president and CEO. “This year we have doubled the number of trees to 50. In addition to trees that celebrate Indiana companies past and present like L.S. Ayres and Weaver Popcorn, and icons like the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, we added a lot of ethnic themed ones.”
This year’s featured trees also include a tribute to the Indiana holiday classic A Christmas Story, an upside-down tree, and even a tree you could win to display in your own home. You can take part in the fun during the History Center’s regular hours of Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
This holiday season, guests will also be able to tour Festival of Trees an extra day each week. The History Center will be open noon to 5 p.m. on Sundays between Thanksgiving and the New Year. The History Center will also extend its hours on Tuesday, Dec. 22, staying open until 9 p.m.
In addition to the winter wonderland, guests to IHS can tour an exhibition highlighting holiday-based photos in Lanham Gallery and enjoy fun, family-friendly activities and events.
For more information on Festival of Trees and other IHS programs, call (317) 232-1882 or visit www.indianahistory.org.
By Duane Brodt
Conner Prairie Interactive History Park
Conner Prairie transforms into Conner Scairie next week for 11 days of Headless Horseman, a fall family tradition in central Indiana. And this year, guests can help Conner Prairie set a world record.
The 32nd year of Headless Horseman begins Oct. 9, 2015. Conner Scairie will be a haunted land inhabited by fun-loving ghouls Beautisha, a cosmetics-loving witch; underworld expert and stand-up comedian wannabe Dr. Acula; mad scientist Ed and assistant Esmeralda; magic storyteller Holly Ween; and the Headless Horseman roaming the land.
Guests of all ages are encouraged to attend in family friendly costumes. Each night, Disney’s “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” will be shown at Lenape Indian Camp. The story will also be shared through nightly marionette shows. Magic shows, storytelling, face painting, ghostly vortexes, fortune telling, music and more are offered each night.
And guests are asked to visit a new craft area each night of Headless Horseman and help ghouls create 6,000 origami bats. Once that feat is achieved and verified, Conner Prairie will be eligible to be listed in the Guinness Book of World Records.
The Apple Store at Conner Prairie has extended hours each night of Headless Horseman. The store will serve up its popular gourmet caramel apples plus fresh cider slushies, popcorn, rice crispy treats and more until 9 p.m. each night.
And Headless Horseman guests can take in the fall sights and Conner Scairie from above as the 1859 Balloon Voyage exhibit will be open each night, weather permitting.
Sponsored by Reynolds, Goodwill, Marsh Supermarkets and Fishers Family Dentistry, Headless Horseman runs from 6-9 p.m. Oct. 9-11, 15-18 and 22-25. Activities and hayrides may run past 10 p.m. Tickets on Thursday and Sundays are $10 in advance, $12 at the gate and free for Conner Prairie members. Tickets for Fridays and Saturdays are $14 in advance, $16 at the gate and free for Plus Level members.
Advance sale tickets are available at select central Indiana Marsh and O’Malia’s locations: http://bit.ly/1KQGMnv.
Conner Prairie members can take advantage of a host of Headless Horseman perks, including free admission and an Express Pass to ride the hayride. For a list of perks, visit http://bit.ly/1KVFINb. Guests may sign up to become a Conner Prairie member at the entrance of Headless Horseman.
Spanning 850 wooded acres in central Indiana, Conner Prairie welcomes more than 360,000 visitors of all ages annually. As Indiana’s only Smithsonian Institute affiliate, Conner Prairie offers various outdoor, historically themed destinations and indoor experiential learning spaces that combine history and art with science, technology, engineering and math to offer an authentic look into history that shapes society today.
By Amanda Dorman
Downtown Indy, Inc.
Family-friendly outdoor festivals take the forefront in June with the return of many annual Downtown favorites.
The Christ Church Cathedral Women’s Strawberry Festival returns to Monument Circle to serve an estimated six tons of strawberries and 18,000 homemade shortcakes on Thursday, June 11, 2015.
Thousands of people will gather outside of Holy Rosary Catholic Church and enjoy 25 different Italian meats, pastas, salads and desserts during Italian Street Festival June 12 & 13 (see photo above).
The Circle City IN Pride Festival, Indiana’s largest LGBT celebration, takes place at American Legion Mall June 13.
Sip on craft beer from more than 50 local and national breweries at Brew-Ha-Ha on Park Avenue June 20.
On June 27 & 28, check out the Eiteljorg Museum’s Indian Market and Festival, one of the Midwest’s largest Indian markets.
Other big June festivals:
June 6: Vintage Indiana Wine and Food Festival
June 13: PBS Kids in the Park
June 13 & 14: Talbot Street Art Fair
June13: INDIEana Handicraft Exchange
June 18: Marsh Cookout on the Circle
June 20: Asian Fest
June 21: Familia Fest
Take in the sights and sounds of summer
Summer concerts are officially here and national and local artists alike will bring Downtown to life this June.
The Farm Bureau Insurance Lawn at White River State Park hosts an exciting June summer concert lineup, with Third Eye Blind and Dashboard Confessional kicking off the season on May 30. See Alabama Shakes June 2, Cage the Elephant June 7, Hozier June 11, Ben Harper & The Innocent Criminals June 13, Rob Zombie June 14, Barenaked Ladies June 17, Flogging Molly June 17 and David Gray/Amos Lee June 27.
At Old National Centre, fans of all genres of music can catch big names including:
June 5: Juicy J
June 11: Heart
June 16: Rob Thomas
June 17: The Smashing Pumpkins: In Plainsong – An Acoustic Electro Evening
June 27: Reel Big Fish and Less Than Jake
Catch two more shows at The Cabaret at the Columbia Club: Indy Men’s Chorus: A Night at the Cabaret on June 12 and Linda Lavin: Now on June 26 & 27.
There are several options for enjoying live tunes outside this summer. Indiana Historical Society’s “Concerts on the Canal” kick off May 28 and continue every Thursday at 6 – 8 p.m. through the end of July. Reserve a table on the Stardust Terrace or bring a chair or blanket and take a seat on the grassy hill right off the Canal.
Easley Winery offers free concerts every Saturday from 2 – 5 p.m. as part of their “Groovin’ in the Garden” concert series.
Enjoy great live music, animals, rides, delicious food and more Friday nights June 19 through July 10 from 5:30 – 8:30 p.m. at the Indianapolis Zoo’s Zoolapalooza Concert Series.
The Indianapolis Museum of Art kicks off Summer Nights Film Series on June 5 with National Lampoon’s Vacation. Other June showings include Heathers June 12; Casablanca June 19 and Psycho June 26. The series continues every summer Friday through Aug. 28. Films begin at dusk with pre-show activities at 7 p.m. Tickets are $12; $6 for members.
Go car-free this summer
WalkScore.com ranks Downtown Indy as a “Walker’s Paradise” and Sports Illustrated named Indy as “the most walkable Downtown in America.”
That’s why Downtown Indy is challenging the public to go car-free this summer with the new Car-Free Indy program. Ride your bike, take the bus or walk for a more sustainable city. Participants can up online, create a profile, set a goal and track progress now through August. The program strives to have 1,000 participants and save 30,000 miles of commuting by the end of the summer. Prizes will be awarded monthly.
Georgia Street action
Happy Hours kicked off with a bang, with more than 400 people attending each week. Wind down your week at Downtown’s hometown hangout every Thursday from 4:30 – 7 p.m. Enjoy live DJs or bands, appetizers from the Severin Bar and domestic beers and craft brews including Flat 12 and Upland. This event is free to attend.
Workout Wednesdays continues through the end of July on Georgia Street’s west block. Downtown Indy has again partnered with the YMCA to provide fun, all-levels group fitness for FREE Workout Wednesdays weekly from noon – 12:45 p.m. thanks to Buckingham Companies.
Eat lunch alfresco on the Boardwalk and enjoy the sights and sounds of Downtown during Food Truck Fridays from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Cheer the Fever, join the Tribe and more Downtown sports
Catch one (or more) of the 15 Indianapolis Indians home games at Victory Field in June. Enjoy monthly promos including 2-for-1 Tuesdays, Thursday Craft Beer Night, Friday Fireworks and Kid’s Eat Free Sundays.
On June 4, catch the Celebrity Softball Challenge at Victory Field. This game features Indianapolis Colts Robert Mathis and teammate Dwayne Allen, along with other local sports stars as well as mascots and media personalities. The Home Run Derby competition begins at 6 p.m., followed by the seven inning Celebrity Softball Game at 7 p.m.
The Indiana Fever home opener is June 6 against the Minnesota Lynx. Catch four more games at Bankers Life Fieldhouse this month: June 12, 14, 20 & 26. Every Indiana Fever game of the 2015 season will be broadcast either online or on radio or television.
And there’s one more chance to catch the Indy Eleven at home for the season. The team plays FC Edmonton June 13 at IUPUI.
For more information, visit http://downtownindy.org/, or call 317-237-2222.
By Stephanie Perry
Indianapolis Museum of Art
On April 7, 2015, the Indianapolis Museum of Art will shift from à la carte pricing for special exhibitions and parking to a single general admission ticket.
While members will continue to enter free of charge, the new admission ticket will grant non-members access to the IMA’s 52-acre upper campus, including the Museum galleries and special exhibitions such as Dream Cars: Innovative Design, Visionary Ideas, along with the surrounding gardens and Oldfields-Lilly House & Gardens.
The Virginia B. Fairbanks Art & Nature Park: 100 Acres will remain free and open to the public from dawn to dusk. Along with the Park, guests will be able to enjoy the IMA Café, Museum Store and Dudley and Mary Louise Sutphin Mall— home of the Sutphin Fountain, Robert Indiana’s Love sculpture and Roy Lichtenstein’s Five Brushstrokes— free of charge.
The new general admission ticket will cost $18 for adults and $10 for youth ages 6-17. Free admission will be offered for children ages 5 and under, along with prescheduled Marion County school field trips.
Students at four-year, public and nonprofit Marion County colleges and universities will receive free membership to the museum. The IMA will also proudly continue its participation in the state-wide Access Pass program, which provides $1 admission per person per visit for qualifying families.
Under the new model, free admission will be offered on the first Thursday of each month from 4 to 9 p.m. The IMA will also host free Community Days, supported by The Hagerman Group, as part of the new ARTx series made possible with a gift from The Efroymson Family Fund, a fund of Central Indiana Community Foundation (CICF).
Upcoming Community Days include:
Summer Solstice—Saturday, June 20, 2015
Autumn Equinox—Saturday, Sept. 19, 2015
Silent Night—Saturday, Nov. 28, 2015
Winter Solstice—Thursday, Dec. 17, 2015
Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration—Sunday, Jan. 18, 2016
The IMA will also celebrate National Museum Day on May 19 with free general admission.
Annual membership prices for the Museum will remain the same. The IMA is offering a special membership promotion with automatic, free upgrades for Individual and Dual/Family memberships through Sunday, April 5.
Guests purchasing an Individual membership for $55 will receive a free upgrade to a Dual/Family membership, a $75 value. Visitors purchasing a Dual/Family membership will receive a free upgrade to an Associate membership, a $125 value. Upgrades are valid with on-site purchases only.
Along with receiving free, unlimited admission to the campus, IMA members will continue to receive early access to Museum exhibitions, free or discounted admission to IMA programming and special events, and discounts in the IMA Café, Museum Store and Madeline F. Elder Greenhouse Shop.
Over the past three months, the Museum has been working on campus-wide updates, including additional pedestrian walkways, enhanced garden plantings and new signage to help guests better explore the 152-acre campus.
Other recent additions include new sidewalks into the campus from the 38th Street and Michigan Road entrances to provide safer access for guests taking public transportation. Parking booths have also been removed to allow for free parking for all guests— even those who do not purchase general admission tickets.
Beginning the week of April 13, a new garden tram will take visitors from the main museum building through the Oldfields Estate, including a stop at the Madeline F. Elder Greenhouse & Shop. A narrated garden tour with information about the history of the estate and the gardens will accompany the tram ride. Tickets are free for members and will cost $5 for non-members, and can be purchased at the main Guest Services desk in the Efroymson Family Entrance Pavilion.
The Museum of Art is located at 4000 Michigan Road in Indianapolis, Indiana. To learn more about the new admission policy and campus changes, visit http://www.imamuseum.org/visit/new-admission-faq.
By Stephanie Perry
Indianapolis Museum of Art
Warmer days ahead: IMA summer camp registration now open
Expanded offerings for 2015 includes camps in new places, opportunities for younger audiences
Is your family dreaming of warm, sunny days amidst the winter chill? Get a jump start on your summer planning and choose from over 30 day camps offered at the Indianapolis Museum of Art from June 15 through July 24, 2015.
Summer camps are available Monday through Friday for children ages 4 to 13. With themes ranging from music and theater to pirates and dinosaurs, camps offer activities for every interest and hobby. Kids can play secret agent or superhero, archeologist or botanist, painter or astronaut. They can take a trek through the woods, start a band or create an artwork inspired by the IMA’s galleries.
The 2015 lineup features old favorites such as the popular Superheroes camp, complemented by new additions such as Villains camp. New for 2015, two camps will be offered in The Virginia B. Fairbanks Art & Nature Park: 100 Acres for children ages 8 to 10. In Off the Beaten Path, budding scientists can examine insects under a microscope, meet a bee expert and check out the IMA’s man-made hives, build a bat house and more. In Our Backyard will feature nature-inspired art activities, photography sessions and the opportunity to create a new interactive play space within The Park. Many camps will feature visits from IMA employees, including curators, horticulturists and conservation scientists, along with special guests and experts from the community.
Other 2015 highlights include several camps inspired by the upcoming exhibition, Dream Cars: Innovative Design, Visionary Ideas, opening at the Museum on May 3. In Fasten Your Seatbelts, campers with a need for speed can build miniature race tracks, create toy car sculptures and race Big Wheel® bicycles through paint to create colorful compositions.
For registration and a complete list of camp offerings, visit http://www.imamuseum.org/class/ima-summer-camps-2015-play-learning. Registration can also be done by phone at 317-920-2679. IMA members receive special discounts on all camp offerings.