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Old 07-14-2013, 10:24 AM
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Indianapolis is quite beautiful


I've lived in and around the Dayton, Ohio area my whole life (45 years). Yet I've never visited Indianapolis. That is, until this weekend. Our 14 year old daughter is infatuated with The Beatles, so I am taking her to a Paul McCartney concert this evening in Indianapolis.

We are currently staying at a hotel in downtown area. This morning I took a jog along a canal located a few blocks west of the center of town. Wow, very nice Ė much classier than the one in San Antonio. Lots of fountains, waterfalls, and a few restaurants. Not sure when it was built, but it's quite an engineering achievement. There are also quite a few apartments & condos that overlook the canal. I just never expected something like this in a Midwestern city.

There are also a few museums along the canal, very close to our hotel. One has a guitar exhibition, so I'll probably be taking my daughter there before we walk to the concert.

I wish I had known about Indianapolis earlier. And it's such a short drive for us.
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Old 07-14-2013, 11:00 AM
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No comment on Indianapolisóthe one relatively recent time I visited, it was raining the whole timeóbut this sentence warms my heart:
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Our 14 year old daughter is infatuated with The Beatles, so I am taking her to a Paul McCartney concert this evening in Indianapolis.
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Old 07-14-2013, 11:06 AM
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Welcome to the Circle City!
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Old 07-14-2013, 11:11 AM
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I was there over the 4th. It is a pretty city. The paddleboat ride down the canal was pretty fun.
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Old 07-14-2013, 11:24 AM
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Not sure when it was built, but it's quite an engineering achievement.
1836.

Indianapolis will never be one of my favorite cities, but having grown up there and lived there until the late 80s, I can tell you they sure have done a great job with the downtown area. It was a wasteland when I lived there.

Last edited by Pork Rind; 07-14-2013 at 11:25 AM.
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Old 07-14-2013, 12:04 PM
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My mother and sister live in a small suburb outside of Indy. I like the downtown but getting there isn't so great.
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Old 07-14-2013, 12:27 PM
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As someone born in Illinois, I just had to open this thread...it is not often one hears the two words - Indiana and Beautiful used in the same sentence!

That said, we did used to vacation at Indiana Beach quite often, and it was fun....and that was where I saw The Who in concert.

BTW, as long as you mentioned the Beatles and Indiana... I am not sure but I think I might have been the reason The Who came up with the idea of Pinball Wizard...at the resort, they had a huge area with lots of pinball machines (probably fifty or more) that was sort of outside, but had a covered top. As I was playing that afternoon (pretty much the only one there) I looked up and saw The Who walk by (probably for a sound check at the auditorium across the way) and stop and gawk at the pinball area...and they were sort of watching me and I started to nervously pretend I was some kind of expert. (They couldn't see the actual machine, just me hitting the sides and hopping around like a madman.) I was a huge fan of theirs and they were all staring at me and, well, what else was I supposed to do? They watched for about 5 minutes and moved on.

About a year later, Pinball Wizard came out. Just sayin'....

Last edited by DMark; 07-14-2013 at 12:28 PM.
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Old 07-14-2013, 01:08 PM
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I wish I had known about Indianapolis earlier. And it's such a short drive for us.

The Benjamin Harrison Home is in Indy, as well as his and Caroline's burial site, Crown Hill cemetery, James Whitcomb Riley is also buried there.


I did not get a chance to tour his home. Not one of my favorite poets, but he was still very good, but still would have enjoyed touring it.


BH's voice:


http://archive.org/details/harrison1889
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Old 07-14-2013, 02:40 PM
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Old 07-14-2013, 04:09 PM
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I am not sure but I think I might have been the reason The Who came up with the idea of Pinball Wizard...
I think you may have to share the credit with Nik Cohn.
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Old 07-14-2013, 04:33 PM
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If you have a spare hour or two, you'll totally love the Drum Museum downtown. I forget what the address is, but I believe it's in the basement of one of the corner buildings off the Atrium Circle. It is fantastic!

I love Indy - we go there three or four times a year, just for a weekend. The downtown is excellent, and I love Mounment Circle.
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Old 07-14-2013, 05:44 PM
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I used to go there on business 4 or 5 times a year. When I first started going about the only place anyone would take you to eat was St. Elmo's steakhouse. It's a very nice steakhouse but who wants to eat at the same place every night?
Over the years I was very happy to see the dining in Indianapolis drastically improve.

ETA - the zoo is really nice too. It's a favorite Indy stop for me.

Last edited by zoid; 07-14-2013 at 05:46 PM.
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Old 07-14-2013, 07:13 PM
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There are some nice places in Indianapolis (I lived there for a couple of years in the '80s).

Of course, some of the most memorable times were spent covering shootings, stabbings and other mayhem on the near north/northwest sides. You can get a slightly different flavor (but still a memorable one) from watching old "Cops" episodes that take place on the south side.
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Old 07-15-2013, 10:51 AM
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I love Indianapolis. Be sure to visit the zoo, children's museum and the Eiteljorg Native American museum. Bankers Life Fieldhouse is a gorgeous basketball arena, and Victory Field, home of the AAA Indians, is considered one of the. best minor-league ballparks. (The view past center field is astonishing, too).
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Old 07-15-2013, 12:05 PM
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Glad you liked it! I sure enjoy it here.
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Not sure when it was built, but it's quite an engineering achievement.
Well... The canal was originally planned after the Erie Canal proved to be useful, but didn't quite account for the popularity of that whole railroad thing. A financial crisis halted its construction, then it was abandoned when rail proved to be far easier.

I hope your hotel also pointed out the Cultural Trail to you. You were most likely on a portion of it on the canal. It connects 4 of the major downtown cultural districts with very pedestrian- and bike-friendly sidewalks. Its final stage was recently completed (finally), and it's been a huge success since it's initial implementation. I know a lot of people in the city planning department, and they get a lot of visitors from other cities coming in to study it. It's a great way for a tourist to cover a lot of relevant ground.
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Old 07-15-2013, 12:17 PM
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Sateryn76:

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If you have a spare hour or two, you'll totally love the Drum Museum downtown. I forget what the address is, but I believe it's in the basement of one of the corner buildings off the Atrium Circle. It is fantastic!
It's properly called the Rhythm Discovery Center, and the address can be found on the linked web site. And I agree that it's fantastic!
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Old 07-15-2013, 12:23 PM
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Sateryn76:



It's properly called the Rhythm Discovery Center, and the address can be found on the linked web site. And I agree that it's fantastic!
Thanks! I found out about it here, probably from you, and that was the best thing I've ever done there. We took a special day trip just to go there, about 2.5 hours away from us, and it was totally worth it.
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Old 07-15-2013, 12:58 PM
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Thanks, it's always nice to hear when our travel suggestions turn out well for someone.
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Old 07-15-2013, 12:59 PM
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Sateryn76:
It's properly called the Rhythm Discovery Center, and the address can be found on the linked web site. And I agree that it's fantastic!
I live here and have never heard of this. I must check it out!
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Old 07-15-2013, 01:11 PM
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Some close friends of mine moved there in the late 1990s, so I visited Indianapolis a few times around the turn of the millennium. I wouldn't rate it highly as a tourist destination, though you can certainly find things to do and places to eat if you find yourself there for several days. But it looks like an absolutely great place to live - at that time, at least, it had the amenities of a major city, with the livability and ease of getting around of a much smaller city.

And there's a hell of a lot to be said for places like that. Not every city can or should be a tourist destination, but every city ought to strive to be a pleasant place to live.
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Old 07-15-2013, 02:02 PM
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I couldn't agree with you more, RTFirefly - though I worry that the "all the plusses of a big city, but with the charm of a small town" phrase goes into the "cliches people say about their city" thread sometimes. My last house was in a small residential pocket within a 10 minute drive of downtown, in a great little historical district with a ton of charm. My family lives in Kansas City, and they doubted how good of an area it could possibly be (because why in the world would you not want to live in the suburbs?!). They're amazed every time they come to visit. "We can walk somewhere to go eat?!" It was like we had reinvented the wheel!


And for $90,000, it can be all yours!
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Old 07-15-2013, 02:06 PM
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I visited Indianapolis last winter for the first time. It is a beautiful place, very clean, and with interesting buildings. I only wish a.) it wasn't winter (It's COLD in Indianapolis in winter) and b.) I had more time.


The pavilion suspended above the intersection downtown is pretty neat, and unique, in my experience. They had a Christmas concert going on there.
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Old 07-15-2013, 07:25 PM
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Probably too late for this trip, but next time take your daughter to the Children's museum. When you leave and she asks why you are smiling so big you can always claim that you are just thrilled to see how good of a time SHE had.

I almost wish it had a different name as some people will discount it because they think it is just for kids and will be something like Barney land (there are dinosaurs, but they don't sing or dance).
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Old 07-15-2013, 07:35 PM
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The pavilion suspended above the intersection downtown is pretty neat, and unique, in my experience. They had a Christmas concert going on there.
That's the Arts Garden

Ok, for some reason my link won't work (hey, I'm new around here). Google image search for Indianapolis Arts Garden.

Last edited by Spud; 07-15-2013 at 07:38 PM.
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Old 07-15-2013, 08:20 PM
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Some of the parks here are pretty nice, but I assume every large city has those.

However the state parks like fort harrison are nice.

Obviously the canal is nice to walk along.

One thing I dislike here is public transit is terrible. I'd love to be able to take a train into town, but there is no train and the busses are slow as hell. Plus parking downtown is fairly affordable if you pick the right garage, so I just drive.
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Old 07-16-2013, 09:55 AM
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Plus parking downtown is fairly affordable if you pick the right garage, so I just drive.
Get the Parkmobile app for street parking, it's awesome. It works in a bunch of other cities as well.
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Old 07-16-2013, 05:59 PM
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I've lived Indy all of my life & on nearly every side of town, & I can truly say I love my city.
I get "citysick" when I'm away on travel - I miss the trees, rivers, & of course, downtown.
I'm glad you enjoyed your visit, & hope you can come back soon!
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Old 02-20-2020, 01:27 PM
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As someone born in Illinois, I just had to open this thread...it is not often one hears the two words - Indiana and Beautiful used in the same sentence!

That said, we did used to vacation at Indiana Beach quite often, and it was fun....and that was where I saw The Who in concert.
Bumping because the 94-year-old amusement park has suddenly closed.
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Old 02-20-2020, 01:53 PM
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My daughter lives in a ritzy suburb just north of Indy, and I've taken my grandson to the zoo and the Children's Museum, both very nice.
On the other hand, they went into their supermarket one day and asked where the lox was. They were directed to hardware.
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Old 02-20-2020, 02:08 PM
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As someone born in Illinois, I just had to open this thread...it is not often one hears the two words - Indiana and Beautiful used in the same sentence!

That said, we did used to vacation at Indiana Beach quite often, and it was fun....and that was where I saw The Who in concert.
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"There's More Than Corn in Indiana!"

Yeah... they got soybeans, too.
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Old 02-20-2020, 08:46 PM
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This has to be one of the most boring cities I’ve ever visited. Big circular freeway, no there there, dead downtown, and lots of suburbs.

And I actually lived in one of those burbs as a kid for a couple years but don’t remember a thing about it.
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Old 02-21-2020, 12:35 PM
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Never been to Indy, but I've heard it's pretty bleak and crime ridden.
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Old 02-21-2020, 01:06 PM
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Never been to Indy, but I've heard it's pretty bleak and crime ridden.
What large cities aren't bleak? I mean maybe the coastal california and florida ones aren't, but other than that.

Much of the crime is in a handful of neighborhoods.
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Old 02-21-2020, 07:45 PM
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I love that people who admit they have never been somewhere or likely haven't been there for 40 years think they have a valid opinion on this city.

The OP gave a very positive opinion from 7 years ago. Things are even better now.

My friend got mugged in Chicago when he was 13... that was 45 years ago but I'll post about what a hell hole it is today.
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Old 02-21-2020, 07:47 PM
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My daughter lives in a ritzy suburb just north of Indy,
We may be neighbors.
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Old 02-21-2020, 08:04 PM
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I’ve wanted to see Indianapolis for years, to go to the Soldiers and Sailors Monument in Monument Square.

It’s the only thing in the U.S. designed by the German architect Bruno Schmidt, who did some of the most kickass memorials in Europe, including the Monument to the Battle of Nations at Leipzig, the most enormous and formidable and scary war monument in the world.
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Old 02-21-2020, 09:41 PM
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Iíve wanted to see Indianapolis for years, to go to the Soldiers and Sailors Monument in Monument Square.

Itís the only thing in the U.S. designed by the German architect Bruno Schmidt, who did some of the most kickass memorials in Europe, including the Monument to the Battle of Nations at Leipzig, the most enormous and formidable and scary war monument in the world.
I will say that the monument square is an excellent use of space and I wish far more American cities and towns had something like it.
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Old 02-22-2020, 07:49 AM
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I will say that the monument square is an excellent use of space and I wish far more American cities and towns had something like it.
Nitpick... it is monument CIRCLE because... well it's a circle.

Ike... if you decide to jump out of your plane over our fly over state let me know and I'll show you around. We honestly do have a lot of things to offer.
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Old 02-22-2020, 12:16 PM
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So, Crafter_Man, did your car survive the Hoosier Potholes? They call Indiana the Crossroads of America because every road one drives on makes one cross!
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Old 02-22-2020, 12:46 PM
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I haven't been to Indianapolis since Marilyn Monroe died. Literally. We had been on a family trip to visit my mom's family in Ohio, and on our way home to Los Angeles, our car broke down in Indianapolis. My mom had an old friend who lived there and was wonderful enough to offer to let us stay until the car was fixed. We camped out on her living room rug. I remember her hospitality all these years later.

My memories of the city part are of a dirty, depressing, rundown landscape. My mom's friend lived in a suburb. It was cool to me, because there were no fences between houses. I wasn't used to that. The husband said that when the development was laid out, they only cut down the trees they absolutely had to. It was pretty and green and forest-y. The husband had connections, and we got a private tour at the Speedway...even got to walk on the bricks, which was very cool.

I only know what the city is like today from watching the Good Bones show on HGTV. The mom and daughter on the show have done a lot of rehabs fixing up old houses. They also patronize a lot of local businesses, so it's nice to see how the area has been re-developed. It looks so much more appealing than when I was there!
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Old 02-22-2020, 03:18 PM
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I haven't been to Indianapolis since Marilyn Monroe died. Literally.
Lots of things have changed since 1962. I learned how to walk, talk, went to school, raised a family, and have had a 30+ year career.

I agree, Indy wasn't a great place in the 70's and early 80's but it has made amazing progress since then.
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Old 02-22-2020, 04:40 PM
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I live here now, and it's kinda dull, but not bad. Really too conservative for my taste, and has no good outlet for art films, but we moved here when my son was four, and I have to admit, it was a great place for a little kid. We had a membership in the zoo, the Children's Museum, and Connor Prairie. The admission to the first two for a single day for a kid and two adults was about $60, and for the last was about $40, but the total year's membership for all three was less than $300. The zoo and Connor Prairie both have kickass water parks.

The boychik is 13 now. He comes home from school, and closes the door to his room, and doesn't come out except for food or the bathroom, or to go to a friend's. It's OK. I remember those years, and his relationship with me now is way, way better than mine was with my mother, which is to say, we can go 3 days without a screaming fight (actually, we've never had one of those, but we did have a bit of a stand-off when he told me he didn't want me to ever go into his room again. I asked who would change his sheets, and he said he would, and he would vacuum once a week. It lasted two weeks.

Nevermind.

There is a lot of stuff here, and I'm actually pretty glad that we had the opportunity to move here when we did. We we in the district on the one extraordinarily highly rated (nationally!) elementary school that wasn't in a really wealthy district. It had the district's programs for special ed. and well as gifted and talented, and my son was in both (he was the only kid in both). It was also an very diverse school. My son still managed to be only one of about 3 Jewish kids there, but otherwise, it was a loaf of 3-kind marble rye (equal parts dark brown, light brown, and white).

Now we are in Speedway. This used to be a high-crime area, but it isn't anymore. It's actually little Mexico. 1/3 of the stores here either have bilingual, or monolingual Spanish staff. Speedway also has very reliable power, because we have a grid set up for raceday, that is normally operating at a fraction of its capacity.

It's just never really been my city, though. I'm from New York, and even though I left when I was a child, and never went back for very long, I'm one of those "No place like home" New Yorkers. The downtown area does have a quaint "big-city of my youth" feel, though, that makes me nostalgic a little. Other things about the Midwest scare me. The state fair overwhelms me, and an actual working farm creeps me out. I would MUCH rather walk alone down a dark alley in town, than through a cornfield at night.

Scariest thing I ever did was a cornfield maze. I'm not claustrophobic, but wow, did that haunt me.

Anyway, to whomever said "beautiful," and "Indianapolis" in the same sentence was surprising, I hear ya.
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Old 02-22-2020, 05:09 PM
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Lots of things have changed since 1962. I learned how to walk, talk, went to school, raised a family, and have had a 30+ year career.

I agree, Indy wasn't a great place in the 70's and early 80's but it has made amazing progress since then.
Oh, I know. It's just that one of my clearest memories of that stay was seeing the local paper with the blaring headlines about her death.

Every place has changed a lot in that many years!
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Old 02-22-2020, 06:51 PM
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Oh, I know. It's just that one of my clearest memories of that stay was seeing the local paper with the blaring headlines about her death.

Every place has changed a lot in that many years!
I totally agree, and I know I'm overly defensive. I've lived here (or within an hour or so) my entire life and I've seen things change so much and it bothers me when someone comments based on very old and outdated information.

I live in one of those (gasp) suburbs that is routinely listed as one of the best places to live... work ... raise a family in the US.

Yes, we sucked in the 70's but we have worked hard to improve... and have done a pretty good job in my opinion.
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Old 02-22-2020, 11:10 PM
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On the other hand, they went into their supermarket one day and asked where the lox was. They were directed to hardware.
Pretty sure this was a joke. Indy has a large Jewish population, and even a non Jew like me knows roughly where to find Lox.
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Old 02-23-2020, 08:08 AM
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This has to be one of the most boring cities Iíve ever visited.
Huh? Haven't you taken the tour of the John Deere dealerships?
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Old 02-23-2020, 08:44 AM
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So, Crafter_Man, did your car survive the Hoosier Potholes? They call Indiana the Crossroads of America because every road one drives on makes one cross!
I recall it did. Then again, Ohio isn't much better. I'm in Cleveland right now, and the potholes here have their own zip codes.

And in case anyone's curious, the Beatles-infatuated daughter is now a junior in college. She still likes The Beatles, but would now rather listen to The Doors. And my 16 year old son likes Black Sabbath and The Kinks. Kids these days and their crazy music...
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Old 02-23-2020, 12:33 PM
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Been there twice, each for a few days. Never saw nothing but The Brickyard. That was fun. I seem to recall it raining an awful lot.

I'll probably go to Austin someday, and see nothing but COTA.

I'm pretty lame.
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Old 02-23-2020, 02:08 PM
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This has to be one of the most boring cities Iíve ever visited. Big circular freeway, no there there, dead downtown, and lots of suburbs.
Having a circular freeway applies to pretty much every major city in the midwest. What the hell does that have to do with anything? And is there ANY city that doesn't have lots of suburbs? What a bizarre list of criticisms.
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Old 02-24-2020, 01:46 PM
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I moved to the Purdue U. area for my PhD not too long ago, from Seattle. Having originally grown up in southern Wisconsin, I have long had an affinity for Chicago, so typically, I turn there for trips to get my "downtown" fix (museums, restaurants, etc.)

But I finally got around to visiting Indianapolis. Surprisingly green! Lots of parks, plenty of rivers, plenty of tree-lined streets in the city neighborhoods. Not what I expected; on a map it's a big square city.

We only really visit there occasionally, for the Trader Joe's and the zoo at Christmas time. I think it's probably a lot more of an interesting city than I'd originally given it credit for.
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