(Topic ID: 347219)

What to do in Indianapolis?

By FatPanda

7 months ago


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  • 17 posts
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  • Latest reply 7 months ago by plovis
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#1 7 months ago

Wife and I might be going to Indianapolis for a few days in a couple weeks. This would be our first time visiting. What do you suggest for things to do? May or may not include pinball/arcades. What are must visit places?

And most importantly where can I get the best food? Open to any and all suggestions. We really love ethnic food and good bakeries. TIA

#2 7 months ago

It all depends on if you're in the city proper, the north side or the south side. I'm an east coast transplant from the north side and here are my recommendations after 3 years here. Native locals may have additional tips.

As far as Pin locations go...

- Tappers in the middle of the city is my go to place. There's about 20-25 games there and the owners take excellent care of all of them. Monday's are half off, 50 cent days for all pins. A walk up and down that street also has some great restaurants and shops.
- There is also a Pins Mechanical in a place called the Garage Food hall (which I highly recommend for eats) but all of those machines a really beat up so proceed with caution. 35 or 40+ machines there.
- Depending on exactly when you visit, there is a place called the Pin Lodge, which is a private collection owned by one person who graciously opens up his 100+ pin collection to the public once a month for only $5 a person. It's a pretty amazing experience everytime I go. PM me if you'd like details.

As far as eats go, check out:

- Garage Food hall as previously mentioned. It's about 30 independantly owned eateries in one spot. Burgers, loster rolls, ethnic, etc. It's a lunchtime typo of place.
- Livery (Latin Food) has won some regional awards and is a favorite of the wife and I. They are part of Cunningham Resturant group. Check them out as all of thier resturants around the area are really good.
- If you want really fancy, look up Vida, which (I think) is owned by Michilen start rated chef. We occasionally do the 6 course wine and tasting menu and it never dissapoints.
- The Rathskeller is authentic German food where they sell giant Steins of beer as well. Live local bands too.
- The Slippery Noodle is a popular local bar that is known for their fantastic blues and rock acts.
- Make sure you get a pork tenderloin sandwich somewhere, as it's an Indiana thing. Everyone has their favorite spot and mine is Four Day Ray Brewery in Fishers. If you're unfamiliar, google it. It's a huge breaded pork loin (about 14" wide) on a little tiny bun LOL. It's pretty damn good.

I hope this helps. A final word of advice, you can walk around Indy proper on a weekend during the day without issue. You'll see families, couples, people walking their dogs, etc. But DO NOT walk anywhere once dusk hits, unless you're in a safely populated area that you don't intend on leaving. On a walk back to your hotel, you can go from a ritzy neighborhood to a block with (unfortunately) groups of strung out individuals that are looking for trouble.

With that said, it is a fun city. Best of luck, and have fun!

#3 7 months ago

Stay the extra day, make that 2 Hour Drive from Indy and go here

https://fortwaynepinball.com/

#4 7 months ago
Quoted from Npbassman:

But DO NOT walk anywhere once dusk hits, unless you're in a safely populated area that you don't intend on leaving. On a walk back to your hotel, you can go from a ritzy neighborhood to a block with (unfortunately) groups of strung out individuals that are looking for trouble.


Definitely a comment from outside 465. It's a warzone I tell you--homeless people and druggies robbing and killing everywhere!!!

#5 7 months ago
Quoted from Wmsfan-GAP:

Stay the extra day, make that 2 Hour Drive from Indy and go here
https://fortwaynepinball.com/

Between Pin Lodge and Tappers, a 2 hour trip to Fort Wayne wouldn't be worth the time. Probably a lot of redundancy of titles.

#6 7 months ago

We're likely going to be staying at the Staybridge on the north side. Looks to be about 20 mins from the center of the highway that encircles the city?

Is crime after dark really a thing there? The biggest comparison for me is probably Chicago, which i have no problems walking around at night. I've been in New Orleans when it's late out; that city wakes up at night.

Will definitely check out Tappers. That place looks pretty awesome.

#7 7 months ago

Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum: https://imsmuseum.org/

Looks like they have the track tours going on too

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#8 7 months ago
Quoted from Agent_Hero:

Between Pin Lodge and Tappers, a 2 hour trip to Fort Wayne wouldn't be worth the time. Probably a lot of redundancy of titles.

Fort Wayne Pinball is a top notch facility, too bad it is a bit out of your way.

If you're driving, there's Main Street Amusements in West Lafayette, that might more more along your path: https://mainstreetamusements.wordpress.com/
They have limited hours tho.

You could shoot a few pins, then walk along the street and grab a meal and brew before heading to Indy. Quite a few places to eat at near Main Street Amusements.

#9 7 months ago

Some good advice so far in the thread.

If you want to treat yourselves to a nice meal downtown and you can get a reservation, Indy's best is St. Elmo's steakhouse. They have world famous shrimp cocktail. If you can't get into there and still want to try it out, they have sister restaurant that serves the same cocktail in Harry & Izzy's.

#10 7 months ago

Sounds as though you're going to be staying in Carmel. There are all kinds of great restaurants up there, but some can be on the pricier side. Personally, I would check out downtown if you're only here for a short time. A number of good places mentioned already, but I would add Root and Bone in broadripple, or Tinker street downtown. There are some fantastic german places (like the Rathskeller previously mentioned) but coming from Madison, I appreciate that may be a high bar. If you want something a little different you could check out the Eagles Nest, its a 360 degree rotating restaurant at the top of the Hyatt Regency downtown. Cool way to see the city.

Can't say enough good things about Tappers. Locally owned and the guys do a great job keeping the machines in shape. Plus, you'll be right in the Fountain Square area with all kinds of other cool spots. Unfortunately not that into bakeries, but there is an Indiana donut chain called Rise N Roll that may be worth checking out if you're unfamiliar. I'm not super into donuts but they always seem to have great choices.

On a final note, I lived in Chicago for years, and if you're fine walking around there you'll be fine here. Of course, if you come in December walking around may not sound that awesome, but its been 60 degrees through most of November, so who the hell knows.

#11 7 months ago

Yes, the hotel is located in Carmel. We usually do a Google search for restaurants in whatever area we visit and choose whatever we're feeling for that day and what has the best reviews. Pricing of said restaurants is also considered. Love donuts so will definitely check out the donut shop. We have really good bakeries in Madison, but only two real donut shops and one of them is closing due to retirement, so options are limited.

Awesome to hear about Tappers! I appreciate well kept games. I'm also pretty spoiled with the pinball scene in Madison so usually am disappointed with pinball offerings elsewhere unless they are maintained by enthusiasts.

We'll check out the botanical gardens likely and see what else downtown has to offer. Wineries, breweries or distilleries worth going to?

#12 7 months ago

I get down to Indy once a year and Tappers is always one of my stops. Very good selection of games and great staff. For some reason they didn't have Insider Connect set up on any of the games that could have it other than one. That may have changed.

#13 7 months ago

Just learning about duckpin bowling today. More or less fun than traditional bowling? Novelty?

#14 7 months ago

I live in Indiana and have never been to Pin Lodge. Please share more info. When is it open? Thanks!

#15 7 months ago

Duckpin bowling is fun for a few rounds and it’s a completely doable walk to or from Tappers. The fountain square area (tappers and duckpin bowling) is a great and is where I spend most of my time when I’m in Indy. There is also an awesome place to play pinball called the PinVault but it’s only open on a limited basis (check their website or fb page). It’s also in fountain square.

#16 7 months ago
Quoted from Lockenick:

duckpin bowling)

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#17 7 months ago
Quoted from FatPanda:

We'll check out the botanical gardens likely and see what else downtown has to offer. Wineries, breweries or distilleries worth going to?

The garden at Newfields is great if thats what you're referring to. A large property thats fantastic for a walk with a lot of cool history about the Lilly family (big part of Indy history). Obviously Indy is a big racing city and driving past the motor speedway can be cool even if thats not your thing, just to appreciate how fucking massive the thing is.

As far as breweries, there are some really cool ones. Beer is one thing the city does well. Wine and spirits? There is some room for improvement. Sun King is a staple, and has a primary location downtown (with about 5 pins I think) as well as a tasting room in Carmel. Otherwise I enjoy Centerpoint and particularly Guggman Haus, which was built into the old Boyle racing headquarters. Good beer, cool spot, fun racing history. Fountain Square brewing is just down the road from Tappers and has a few pins as well. Black Circle is a cool bar/music venue with a heavy metal vibe (also pins). Honestly its hard to wrong with breweries, lots of options.

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