When we visited Indianapolis a few months ago, it was an experience that had something for the whole family. We enjoyed great food, shopping, art museums and plenty of activities our then-6-year-old son would love. It’s hard for me to say what was his favorite activity. He didn’t want to leave the massive Indianapolis Children’s Museum, he’s been asking to ride a surrey ever since our experience at the Indianapolis Central Canal, he loved the dolphins and sharks at the Indianapolis Zoo, had fun playing drums at the Rhythm Discovery Center, and was thrilled to get a special tour of Bankers Life Fieldhouse, home of the Indiana Pacers. So instead of trying to put into words what Indianapolis was like for a child, I’ll let our now 7-year-old son tell you. Introducing Colby Wiedower with his Indianapolis Children’s Guide, which also happens to be his first published story.
In Colby’s words, as told to his Dad:
Go to the Indiana Pacers arena and get a tag if you want to go and see all that awesome stuff (an ID badge for a guided tour). Then a helper will come and take you down an elevator. And first he’ll show you the basketball court. And then he’ll take you into the locker room. And if you’re lucky you might get to wear Danny Granger’s shoes.
They have a TV and everything. Then they’ll take you to the trainer’s room.
Then they’ll take you to the practice room.
Then they’ll take you to the restaurant next to the locker room.
And even if you’re not a fan you can get stuff from the Pacers arena and you can take it home and wear it when there’s a Pacers game happening (on TV). You can be like me, you can get that mascot, Boomer.
Then you can go to the best children’s museum in the entire world (I would agree. The Indianapolis Children’s Museum is the best I’ve ever visited).
And you can go to the climbing things and go to the top where there are these boats that you can sit in.
There is the construction site.
You get to dig with diggers and you get to go way up high on a playground and control the crane.
And then you can go to the drum place (Rhythm Discovery Center). And you can play the big, big gong.
And you can also play all sorts of drums and you can learn what drums they are by the signs.
The hotel you can go to, you can stay at the Omni. It’s a very nice hotel. I think we stayed in room six at the highest level. And the people are so nice they will park your car for you and they’ll get you out of your car and open the door for you.
The restaurant you can go to is Scotty’s Brewhouse. You should go to Scotty’s Brewhouse because they have tons of sports TVs.
One night you can probably go to an Indians baseball game. And if you’re lucky your parents might let you get a Rowdy the bear Indians mascot. And your dad can get an Indians shirt just like my dad.
This is the restaurant that you can have for breakfast, you can go to Café Patachou.
You can also go to the Indiana Pacers team store. You can also go to the Lucas Oil Football stadium. And you can get a blue mascot. That’s what the mascot’s name is, Blue the horse (I will take his word on that).
You can go to the zoo and pet a shark and go see a dolphin show. You can measure how long a giraffe is.
And then you can go to a hamburger place. We ate lots of burgers. (Colby is correct. We had fabulous burgers at Bru Burger Bar in Mass Ave and Broad Ripple Tavern.)
You can go to the Indianapolis toy store in the Mass Ave district and you can probably get a trash truck like I did.
You can go ride the Surrey at the end of the day but you have to be quick because it ends at 5 (I think it was 6, but I won’t argue). And don’t make your dad be crazy like my dad at the river. He almost dropped us in (not true).
And we drove by a big river and we saw boats in the river and we saw other surreys driving with us.
You can go to a thrift store with your wife and your son can probably go out and play with that cat that lives there. (Yes, Colby and I played with a cat outside while Stacey shopped in a really cool thrift shop in the Broad Ripple district, Broad Ripple Thrift).
We were guests of Visit Indy but in no way did the awesomeness of Indianapolis, now my favorite city in the world, sway our opinion. If you have kids you definitely should visit Indianapolis (This disclaimer may or may not have been written by Dad, but I really do think Indianapolis is an awesome city).