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Let's get ready to rrrrrruuummmbbbllleee -- Hoosier Style

That's a football reference, right?
 I've gotta admit, I'm completely unenthusiastic about the subject normally, but I have given myself over to the excitement of hosting the Superbowl in my very own hometown. Indianapolis is a great city that often gets dumped on by outsiders and insiders a like. As kids, everyone talks about moving away -- and then they hit 25 and realize with the low cost of living, nearness to family and relative interest of the city, we're not so bad off here.

But for the visitors out there, even you Patriots fans ( did you hear about this -really?), welcome to my city! Please check out some of the great things we have to offer (in addition to the SuperBowl Village, which is pretty frickin' neat) and spread the word of our big city with a small-town-feel.

Museum row - whatever your interests, you're sure to find a museum or two that float your boat. The Children's museum is the largest in the country (check out the indoor carousel and the dinos outside), the Eiteljorg is the best Western and American Indian art museum East of the Mississippi, and the Indianapolis Museum of Art has AMAZING collections. Or go off the beaten path and try the Indiana Medical History Museum, which showcases turn of the century technology, brains in jars, and is reportedly haunted.

The Eitlejorg, via here.
Downtown restaurants (like Shapiro's - ranked one of the best Reubens in the country!) will be mad all weekend - why not try an expedition to one of the four corners of the city?

North - check out Broad Ripple (and it's little southern brother, SoBro) - our  hipster neighborhood. You'll find college-kid nightlife at the many bars, but don't mistake the plethora of cheap eats for poor taste. This neighborhood knows where it's at when it comes to meal time. My favorites are La Piedad for old school Mexican, Zest! for homestyle gourmet (get the biscuits and gravy or the macaroni and cheese, you'll die), Mama Carolla's for authentic Italian, and Taste for brunch (get the V-8 salad, with fries on the side.)

Zest's burger -ummmmmm.
South- venture to Fountain Square, another hip district with some great vintage flavor. Check out The Red Lion Grog House for British fare or Santorini's for some of the best Greek in town. While you're there, go for some Duckpin bowling at Atomic Bowl.

West - head over to the international strip at 38th St, profiled by the NY Times! A Passage to India offers South Indian cuisine - buffet style, or you can try Peruvian, Cuban, Ethiopian -- you name it, it's there.
Ethiopian at Abyssinia restaurant, via NY Times.
East - I'll be honest, the East side scares me. But it is worth it to go way out to Mama's House for authentic Korean barbecue and soju.

 Broad Ripple and Fountain Square are two fun neighborhoods to walk around - and the shopping is great for browsing. In Broad Ripple, I love The Bungalow (gifty items), The Village Experience (fair trade products) and Rag O 'Rama for thrifting 
Downtown's Mass Ave. neighborhood is another great shopping destination - check out Mass Ave Toys for hip stocking stuffers, Silver in the City for jewelry and funky gifts, and Global Gifts for another hit of fair trade. Stout's Shoes is another great stop for comfy shoes --  they're the oldest shoe store in the country and they deliver the boxes to you in an overhead basket-trolley system. It's awesome 

You know me, I can't visit a city without looking into it's history. Same with my home town -- and the nice thing is, there's plenty to see and learn about here in Hoosier-ville. Check out President Benjamin Harrison's home, or further out of town, Conner Prairie, a living history museum.
Crown Hill, from here.
 I personally love walking or biking through Crown Hill Cemetery - sure, it's a little morbid, but on a pretty day it's one of the most peaceful and unique places in the city. Founded in the late 1800s, it's the country's 3rd largest cemetery and the final resting place for presidents (Harrison) poets (Riley) and even a bank-robber (Dillinger).  The Soldier's and Sailor's monument, the central landmark of downtown, is an amazing example of late 19th century monumental architecture and pays tribute to the Indiana's fallen.
Monument Circle, from here.
 If you're visiting, I hope you enjoy the city and look past just the football attractions. And if you're a virtual visitor, do consider coming by in person (I've got a second bedroom!) It's a friendly place, and what it lacks in size and diversity, it definitely makes up in heart. Thanks for reading!

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