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Veterans and Active Duty Military Free Admission Day at DNR Properties, Nov. 11

November 7, 2017 1 comment
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Clifty Falls State Park near Madison, Indiana.
AroundIndy.com staff photo, (c) 2016, all rights reserved.

Press Release
Indiana Dept. of Natural Resources

All veterans and active-duty military personnel, and everyone in their vehicle, will be admitted free to DNR state parks, reservoir properties and state forests on Veterans Day, Saturday, Nov. 11, 2017. Veterans and military personnel should present ID or evidence of military service where entrance gates are in operation.

“We appreciate the sacrifices and service of our veterans and active-duty military and look forward to recognizing them with a day to explore some of the best outdoor places in our state,” said Dan Bortner, director of Indiana State Parks.

For proof of military status, gate attendants will accept:

—Discharge papers (veteran’s DD Form 214).
—Veteran license plates: Ex-POW, Purple Heart, Disabled Hoosier Veteran, Pearl Harbor Survivor.
—Veteran license plates also include:
—Air Force Veteran
—Army Veteran.
—Coast Guard Veteran.
—Marine Corps Veteran.
—Merchant Marine Veteran.
—Navy Veteran.
—U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Disability Award Letter.
—Veterans hunting and fishing license.
—Documents showing veteran benefits with veteran’s name on document.
—Any other certificate or verification letter or form.

For general information about state park, reservoir and forest properties, visit http://dnr.IN.gov.

For information about interpretive programs at state parks and reservoirs, visit InterpretiveServices.IN.gov.

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Temporary State Park Closings November 2017

November 6, 2017 1 comment
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Spring Mill State Park is one of the parks affected by this announcement.
AroundIndy.com staff photo, (c) 2010, all rights reserved.

DNR Press Release

Multiple state park properties to close temporarily for deer reductions

Select Indiana state park properties will close temporarily to allow for controlled deer reductions in the coming weeks.

The dates for the temporary closings are Nov. 13-14 and Nov. 27-28, 2017.

The state parks affected are Chain O’Lakes, Charlestown, Clifty Falls, Fort Harrison, Harmonie, Lincoln, McCormick’s Creek, Ouabache, Pokagon and Trine State Recreation Area, Potato Creek, Shades, Shakamak, Spring Mill and Cave River Valley Natural Area, Tippecanoe River, Versailles, and Whitewater Memorial.

These properties will close to the general public the evening before each two-day reduction effort and reopen the morning after each effort.

Only individual hunters selected from the draw in September and their designated hunting partners may participate in the hunts.

DNR biologists evaluate which parks require a reduction each year based on habitat recovery and previous harvest rates at each park. The state parks are home to more than 32 state-endangered plants and numerous significant natural communities. The reductions help control browsing by deer to a level that helps maintain habitat throughout the state parks for all plants and animals.

Information on 2018 state park deer reductions, including online applications, will be available next summer at dnr.IN.gov/fishwild. The application deadline is usually the end of August.

Additional information on state park deer reductions is at stateparks.IN.gov/6289.htm.

NinjaZone Academy Now Open at Grand Park in Westfield

March 14, 2017 1 comment
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The NinjaZone Academy is located inside Grand Park Events Center in Westfield, Indiana.

By Bob Burchfield, Editor
AroundIndy.com, LLC

Today I visited the NinjaZone Academy at Grand Park – The Sports Campus at Westfield in #Westfield #Indiana to check out this new gymnastics, martial arts, obstacle training, and freestyle movement facility with my 12-year-old grandson, Zion.

The NinjaZone, which just opened last week, is located INSIDE the Grand Park Events Center at 19000 Grand Park Blvd in Westfield. It’s part of a national network of these franchises that just started two years ago. Right now, according to the manager, it’s open Mon-Sat 9 am to 12 pm and Mon-Thu 4-8 pm (hours may fluctuate as traffic patterns and classes develop).

This is a really cool fitness gym for kids with state-of-the-art equipment and fully-trained coaches and trainers. As you can see in the photos, trainer Tyler Robling was right there to keep an eye on Zion as he went through a little exercise routine on “The Rig!” in the The Challenge Room.

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“The Rig!” in The Challenge Room at NinjaZone Academy.

(Here’s a tip: my grandson has autism, which presents a lot of challenges of its own. But Zion kicked off his shoes and took to the equipment like a duck to water! I think kids will naturally be drawn to this equipment.)

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Zion tries his hand at walking the tight rope, under the watchful eye of trainer Tyler Robling.

Grand Park is the first-ever Academy location for NinjaZone — and there’s going to be a 2nd location opening this summer in the Geist area at 116th Street and Olio Road.

The NinjaZone Academy offers child-centered personalized instruction with small classes of a 6:1 ratio. Students receive one class per week and eight 20-minute challenge classes per month. Each regular class lasts for 40 minutes.

It is designed to meet the developmental needs of children ages 3 to 13 (you can enroll your kids up to age 11 and they can stay on through age 13).

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Trainer Tyler Robling helps Zion on the monkey bars.

So although Zion is too old to enroll in the Academy, two of my favorite bloggers Jenny Lear (Fortville Mama) and Katy Mann (Indy with Kids) have kids in that age group who are ideal candidates for this program.

In fact, Jenny Lear is actually the one who suggested that I visit NinjaZone and check it out, and when I got there, I discovered that both Jenny and Katy have already beat me to the punch!

By the way, NinjaZone can also do birthday parties for your group!

I’d like to personally thank Scott Rudicel (yes, it’s Rudi: THAT Scott!) and Megan Noel for taking time out of their busy day to give Zion and me a tour of the facility. And as a bonus I discovered that my good friend Jason Nye, who used to work with me at the University of Indianapolis, is now the Digital Content Manager for NinjaZone!

For more information, visit http://theninjazone.com/location-learn-more/ or call 317-418-8761. You can also follow NinjaZone on Twitter @ninjazonegpacad or on Facebook at https://facebook.com/. Check it out when you get the chance!

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DISCLOSURE NOTICE: Rudi gave Zion a free T-shirt during our visit.

Downtown Indianapolis Heats Up in July

June 26, 2016 Leave a comment
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Bicycling along the White River in White River State Park in downtown Indianapolis, Indiana. AroundIndy.com staff photo, (c) 2016, all rights reserved.

By Amanda Dorman
Downtown Indy, Inc.

Fourth of July weekend
Indy’s most popular fireworks show and festival – the Donatos Downtown Freedom Blast – returns to the grounds of the Indiana War Memorial July 4. More than 20,000 people are expected to be Downtown on Veterans Memorial Plaza and American Legion Mall from 6:30 – 10:30 p.m. The fireworks will launch from the Regions Bank Tower at 10 p.m. (North and Michigan streets will be closed throughout the day and New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Delaware streets surrounding the Regions Bank Tower will be closed 9:30 – 10:15 p.m. during the fireworks show.)

Crowds will gather for many music festivities including the Indiana Historical Society’s patriotic-themed Concerts on the Canal July 4 from 5 – 9:30 p.m. The two-day INDYpendance Day Concert for Cancer is back on Georgia Street July 2 & 3 from 2 – 10 p.m. with headliners Ludacris, Awolnation, Kongos and more. On July 1, the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra will perform a one-night only concert Star Spangled Symphony at the Farm Bureau Insurance Lawn at White River State and The Doo! are playing at the Rathskeller Biergarten July 4. The Indianapolis City Market hosts Party of the Plaza July 4 from 7 – 11 p.m. complete with corn hole, checkers, sidewalk chalk and a great view of the Downtown fireworks.

IBE Summer Celebration
The Indiana Black Expo Summer Celebration returns July 7 – 17. The 46th running of Summer Celebration includes business seminars, an employment fair, concerts and more. More than 80,000 attendees will take part in events at various locations Downtown, with most events taking place at the Indiana Convention Center. The FREE Music Heritage Festival takes place Friday, July 15 at American Legion. Music Heritage Festival II takes Place Saturday, July 16 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

Downtown gets festive
There’s still time to enjoy some of Downtown Indy’s best summer festivals. Saturday, July 2 from 11 a.m. – 9 p.m., the Taste of Indy will present an assortment of Asian, Soul, Greek, Mediterranean, Cajun, Hispanic and American food on Monument Circle. Tickets are $6 in advance or FREE for kids 6 and younger.

The Indy Criterium Bicycle Festival, taking place Saturday, July 9 starting at 9 a.m., offers cyclists a unique opportunity to race the city streets that they would rarely do otherwise. Families and bicyclists will also enjoy many of the activities taking place throughout the day including food and beer vendors, music, expo area, free community rides, free Kids Zone activities, BMX stunt shows, kids and juniors bicycle races and more. This festival is FREE to attend.

Step into the West at the Eiteljorg Museum’s West Fest on July 23 from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. This festival is a family event featuring entertainers, animals, food and family fun. Tickets are included with museum admission.

On July 30 from 3 – 7 p.m., the Indiana Microbrewers Festival will showcase more than 100 breweries all in one location – Military Park. Tickets are $40 general admission, $60 for early bird entry and $10 designated driver.

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 summer. Two big names are coming Downtown this month. Coldplay performs at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on July 20. Also at Bankers Life Fieldhouse – Twenty One Pilots on July 31.

Enjoy nine concerts at the Farm Bureau Insurance Lawn at White River State Park this month: Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra July 1; “Weird Al” Yankovic July 7; Barenaked Ladies July 8; Sublime with Rome July 16; Peter Frampton & Gregg Allman July 20; WTTS Rock on the River with The Head and the Heart July 25; Bush and Chevelle July 26; Tedeschi Truck Band o July 27; and Halsey July 29.

The Indianapolis Zoo’s Zoolapalooza series continues for two more Friday nights: July 1 & 8. Another Zoo concert series – Animals and All That Jazz – kicks off July 7 and continues Thursday nights through Aug. 4.

Two big names are coming to the Cabaret: catch Rumer Willis July 22 &23 and John Pizzarelli & Jessica Molaskey July 29.

Cheer the Fever, join the Tribe
Catch one (or more) of the 15 Indianapolis Indians home games at Victory Field this month. On July 4, enjoy two firework shows following the games (the Indians’ own firework show plus the Donatos Downtown Freedom Blast). There are four chances to catch the Indiana Fever at home: July 1, 13, 15 & 19. The Indy Eleven play at IUPUI’s Michael A. Carroll Stadium July 9, 13 & 23.

Georgia Street action continues
Workout Wednesdays strengthened by Indiana University Health continue through the end of July on Georgia Street’s west block. Downtown Indy, Inc. partners with the YMCA to provide fun, all-levels hip hop classes weekly from noon – 12:45 p.m. New this year: Sunrise Yoga on the Canal in partnership with Invoke Studio takes place Wednesday mornings from 6 – 6:45 a.m. on the Vermont Street Plaza.

Downtown residents and workers are invited to wind down the week during Happy Hour Thursdays on Georgia Street. Every Thursday from 4:30 – 7:30 p.m., enjoy music from RadioNow DJs, appetizers from the Severin Bar and domestic beers and craft brews. This event is free to attend, but everyone must be 21 or older.

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.

For more information, visit http://www.downtownindy.org/ or call 317-237-2222.

13th Annual Mutt Strut at Garfield Park, May 15

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By Kristin Conrad
Humane Society of Indianapolis

The Humane Society of Indianapolis’ biggest day of impact for shelter animals is almost here. The 13th annual Mutt Strut is Sunday, May 15, 2016, in a new location at historic Garfield Park, 2432 Conservatory Drive, Indianapolis, Indiana.

This event is the largest annual fundraiser for the Humane Society of Indianapolis. Money raised will help the non-profit organization fulfill its vision of ensuring that Central Indiana animals are treated with dignity and respect and live free from cruelty, harm and neglect.

Each year the organization cares for more than 5,000 animals. Fundraising events like Mutt Strut are vital to IndyHumane, as the organization receives no government funding.

Last year more than 7,000 people and 6,000 pets attended Mutt Strut, which has been named the Best Charitable Event in Indianapolis by NUVO readers for the past seven years.

“It’s hard to believe that Mutt Strut is almost upon us,” says Summer Keown, Special Events Manager for the Humane Society of Indianapolis.

“We’re thrilled to hold the event at Garfield Park this year and help show off one of Indianapolis’ beautiful parks. The dogs are going to love all the greenspace, and we have several fun, new activities available for participants!”

Day-of registration opens at 10:30 am, and the official Mutt Strut walk kicks off at noon. Music, vendors, food, and activities are available from 10:30 am to 3:00 pm.

New activities this year include: musical entertainment throughout the day at the McAllister Amphitheater; pet care seminars from B.C. Henschen of Platinum Paws and Harrison College; kids activities including Colts in Motion and Big Car’s Wagon of Wonders; a beer garden featuring Sun King Brewing Company and New Day Craft; a photo booth run by the talented photographers behind the Instagram accounts The Whitest Pups You Know and Three Silly Pits; and a lure course run by Lucky Dog Adventures where your dog can lose the leash and chase a lure across the field for $10.

Participants can register at http://indymuttstrut.org/register/ or on-site the day of the event.

Full details and a schedule of the day’s events are available at http://indymuttstrut.org/.