Resting beneath the southern shore of Lake Michigan, Indiana is a state teeming with natural beauty and rich history. The state's famous limestone forms the backbone of Indiana's diverse natural attractions, including rivers, canyons, gorges, caverns, forests and more. Those who sneeze at the thought of the outdoors needn't avoid Indiana; the state is also home to several dynamic urban centers. Throughout the year, visitors and residents alike can take their pick of an abundance of festivals, attractions, cultural events, musical activities and more.
- White River State Park, 801 W. Washington St Indianapolis, IN 46201 in Indianapolis, IN.
Get the kids involved in saving the earth with 140 exhibits and 50 activities in downtown Indianapolis at White River State Park. Arts and crafts projects and scavenger hunts add to the fun, and there is food, food and more food. Live music keeps it hopping on the last Saturday of April every year.
- 123 Mill Street Madison, IN 47250 in MADISON, IN.
On the last weekend of April, the annual garden tour at the Lanthier Winery welcomes warm spring breezes and the sweet aroma of a French country garden. Why don't you do the same? The winery is the site of America's only outdoor, interactive "Garden of Art," blooms and scents all around. Free samples of award-winning Indiana wines accompany the garden tour, and master gardeners present free workshops. Visitors get a free samples bag, but a donation to America in Bloom garners a larger bag. Admission is free and you can take home free plants!
- Treaty Line Museum 3801 W Old Dunlapsville Rd Liberty, IN 47353 in Liberty, IN.
This festival on the first weekend in May has a little bit of everything, and there is not much it doesn't have. Go for the BBQ and stay for the Antique Car & Truck Show; if that's not enough, take in the Antique Tractor & Farm Machinery Show. Don't worry, ladies, there is a Craft Fair and many home and health products and services to peruse as well. This is actually in Dunlapsville, just south of Liberty. Go. Eat.
From mid-May through Saturday of Memorial Day weekend, events are scheduled leading up to the legendary Indy 500, auto racing's largest purse. Since 1957, this festival has drawn crowds of half a million people, some attending civic events, kids' festival activities and pre-race races. The 1.5 million TV viewers on top of the 450,000 spectators at the race make this over-a-century-old "greatest race in the world." The big parade caps it off, so come on down.
- Downtown Indianapolis Indianapolis, IN 46204 in Indianapolis, IN.
On the Saturday before the Memorial-Day-weekend race, this giant parade wends through downtown thrilling 300,000 spectators. It's televised and on the level of the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade and the Tournament of Roses parade in Pasadena.
Beginning in 1852, this state fair has brought in some of the most famous people in the world, and still does. You can't top the Beatles, John Phillip Sousa, Elvis, The Jackson Five and four presidents: JFK, FDR, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. A million people attend annually to see farm animals, ride the rides, eat fair food and catch the free entertainment. It's the 6th oldest fair in the nation for good reason.