200 Very Indy Things We Don’t Want to Live Without

Our city's bicentennial is upon us and we're all about celebrating the people, the places, the food, the culture that make Indianapolis so special.
Indianapolis turns 200

Our fair city is celebrating this major milestone in 2020 with its bicentennial. While Indianapolis certainly isn’t perfect, it is ever-evolving and filled with so many interesting people, places, and pockets of culture.

To mark the occasion, we’ve started compiling a list of our favorite things—both big and small—about our hometown. But it wouldn’t be complete without your ideas, Mavens. Because one of the very best things about this place we call home is the people who populate it.

So, take a look at what we’ve started for inspiration and then let us know what you think is a must-include for something very Indy that you can’t live without—a favorite dish at your neighborhood hole-in-the-wall or a uniquely Indy piece of history that lives on in the fabric of the city. Really, all ideas are welcome!

Share them with us on Facebook, Instagram, or email us at editorial@indymaven.com.

  1. Becky Hostetter’s balance bowl from Duo’s. And Becky Hostetter.
  2. The gardens when they’re in bloom at Newfields. 
  3. Coburn Place for the services they provide to survivors of intimate partner abuse locally and the bar they’ve set nationally as a leader in the domestic violence housing model. 
  4. Hearing the start command followed by the engines at the Indianapolis 500…even better when it’s “Ladies and Gentlemen.” 
  5. Sunsets over Eagle Creek—whether from a canoe or a cocktail table at Rick’s Cafe Boatyard. 
  6. Grabbing a Batali from Goose the Market.
  7. A moment of Zen under the legendary 400-year-old Kile Oak in Irvington.
  8. The cinnamon toast at Café Patachou. 
  9. Really, Martha Hoover and her entire food empire. 
  10. Kurt Vonnegut. “All my jokes are Indianapolis. All my attitudes are Indianapolis. My adenoids are Indianapolis. If I ever severed myself from Indianapolis, I would be out of business. What people like about me is Indianapolis.”
  11. Dill pickle popcorn with a boozy kombucha slushy on the Just Pop In patio.
  12. The Children’s Museum, especially during spooky October when the witches are in residence at the Haunted House. 
  13. Long’s Bakery donuts. 
  14. Hinkle Fieldhouse as the Dawgs win with a buzzer beater. 
  15. Meandering around City Market and picking up treats. 
  16. Discovering a new section of the Monon. 
  17. Brunch at The Garden Table on Mass Ave—Breakfast Sammie and a mimosa please!
  18. St. Elmo’s cocktail sauce. Duh. 
  19. All of our great Reggie sports memories—both Miller and Wayne. 
  20. Madam C.J. Walker’s legacy.
  21. The Canal Walk with access to museums, fountains, art, and so much more.
  22. Memorials and monuments dedicated to veterans.
  23. Wacky intersections that are similar to the streets of Paris and D.C.
  24. The dolphin show at the Indianapolis Zoo.
  25. Tibbs Drive-in Movie Theater. Can’t beat a double feature.
  26. The Design Gallery in Newfields, (actually just all of Newfields).
  27. Eli Lilly and their economic and historic impact on the city of Indianapolis.
  28. All of the vintage denim at Zodiac Vintage.
  29. BRICS ice cream. Enough said.
  30. Hubbard and Cravens coffee.
  31. Mint Chocolate Chip cake from The Cake Bake Shop (It’s Oprah’s favorite, too).
  32. December when the Carmel Christkindlmarkt opens. Have you tried the pretzels?
  33. The colors of the leaves during October on Butler’s campus. So golden.
  34. Ann Dancing on Mass Ave.
  35. Fresh fruit from the Broad Ripple Farmers Market.
  36. Concerts at the Egyptian Room…hopefully 2021 will be filled with concerts.
  37. Alfredo pasta from Ambrosia. Feels like you’ve teleported to Italy.
  38. Macarons from The Galley Pastry Shop.
  39. #LOVEINDY statue constantly moving around the city.
  40. Naptown’s Nostalgia Capital: Naptown Thrift. Always stocked with the best vintage clothes.

What ideas can you add, Mavens? Let’s all celebrate together!

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