COVID TRAVEL DIARIES: 24 HOURS IN INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA

Indianapolis proved to have several interesting sites worth visiting. It has a nice historic walkable downtown, which we didn’t really walk because of the cold. The focal point of the city is a very impressive Monument Circle commemorating soldiers fallen in various wars and battles, Designed by Bruno Schmitz and constructed between 1887 and 1902, this limestone monument includes sculptures by Rudolf Schwartz, who created the figures on the structure’s sides, George Brewster, who created the figure of Victory that caps the monument, as well as two astragals, and Nicolaus Geiger, who created the Army astragal.

Monument Circle

After taking photos we proceeded to the State Capitol nearby. Guided tours are currently suspended because of Covid but self guided tours are welcome. Interestingly, all three branches of government are located in the same building. We were lucky because the state Senate was in session and we got to listen to some arguments. The Capitol’s Sheriff opened the state’s Supreme Court for us and gave us some interesting info about the court. It ended up being a great visit in yet another impressive Capitol building. https://www.in.gov/idoa/statehouse

Supreme Court
Next to State Capitol

Later we drove around and took photos at notable sights.  First was a memorial of USS Indianapolis. Good read at https://www.history.navy.mil/browse-by-topic/ships/modern-ships/indianapolis.html.

USS Indianapolis Memorial

 Then the 911 memorial followed by the beautiful Landmark for Peace, honoring the slain Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert F. Kennedy. I also learned that Kurt Vonnegut was a Hoosier and this is why a huge mural of him is drawn on one of the buildings.  There is also a Kurt Vonnegut house which we didn’t get to visit. For more on this author read https://indianahistory.org/blog/kurt-vonnegut-jr-indianapolis-and-slaughterhouse-five/.

Landmark for peace
KURT VONNEGUT MURAL

The area with most restaurants and bars is the Massachusetts street, called the Mass by the locals and this is where we ate dinner in a nice and somewhat upscale Mesh on Mass. BF said it was the best burger he ever had and my salad wasn’t bad either.  https://www.meshrestaurants.com/.

At some point we also stopped at the City Market which was extremely disappointing, most of the stalls were closed or just empty, probably because of Covid. http://www.indycm.com/. So we never got to try the traditional Indianapolis pork tenderloin sandwich but instead shared pulled pork one for lunch.

The next day we started with the world famous Indianapolis 500 Museum and track. https://www.indianapolismotorspeedway.com/. I know nothing about car races but nevertheless the exhibit containing lots of old and new race cars was interesting and the narrated bus ride around the track was really cool. Unfortunately it goes at about only 35 Mph speed and makes a stop for the tourists to kiss the bricks, apparently a tradition for the winners of the race.

KISSING THE BRICKS

We finished our Indianapolis visit at the Arts Museum; a very nice collection of classic and contemporary art. One must buy time stamped tickets online prior to visit, they do not sell tickets at the ticket office because of Covid. Unfortunately we couldn’t visit their famous sculpture gardens because by then it was snowing really heavily. https://discovernewfields.org/

ART MUSEUM

Another nice activity we had to miss because of the weather was Central Canal Walk. Maybe next time… Overall, this was packed with activities day, time well spent.

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