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Archive for July, 2009

I can still remember going to Symphony on the Prairie as a child – I remember the warm nights, lying on a blanket in the cool grass, the sounds that floated over thousands of people gathered to hear great music.  More than 20 years later, not much has changed – with the exception that you can now fly 350 feet in the air on the 1859 Balloon Voyage to get a birds-eye view.

The 1859 Balloon Voyage

The 1859 Balloon Voyage

Before I start talking more about cherished childhood memories and new stories as an adult, I will explain the set up for those that haven’t yet experienced this.  The Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra has been playing at Conner Prairie since Symphony on the Prairie began in 1983 – under a small tent with just a few picnic tables scattered around.  The ISO now plays the music under an amphitheater on the bottom of a small grassy hill, and people can rent tables or bring blankets or chairs to sit on – or they can sit on the grass.  The shell is facing the west, so the sun sets behind it as the musicians play.  There are speakers set up all around, so no matter where you are, you can clearly hear every note they play.

view from the top of the hill

The view from the top of the hill

I have gone twice this season, the first time a few weeks ago, on the Harry Potter night (I left the baby at home and went with 2 great friends).  We got there right at 8, so we were closer to the top of the hill.  We set up camping chairs and a cooler filled with drinks and snacks – and since it has been a while since we could just talk- we ended up quietly chatting the whole time.  It was a blast.  I also watched the balloon go up and down, up and down, all night long but couldn’t convince the girls to go with me.

The balloon at night (photo from Conner Prairie's Flickr stream)

The balloon at night (photo from Conner Prairie's Flickr stream)

The next time I attended was this past weekend – several co-workers and our families gathered together at a table close to the front and it was a blast!  Our little guy boogied to the music of Billy Joel while my husband and I relaxed in our chairs.  One of my favorite parts of the evening was when the saxophone player came out into the crowd!

The sax player out in the crowd!

The sax player out in the crowd!

Symphony on the Prairie still has several weeks left in this season – if you are a local, you have go, and if you are a visitor, this is a must on your to-do list.

Karen captured a great close up shot of the shell!

Karen captured a great close up shot of the shell

To wrap up – I can say was as fun to experience this central Indiana tradition now as it was in 1987.  Only this time, I get to help my own child have those wonderful memories!

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Last week our intern, Emma, visited the Frederick-Talbott Inn in Fishers, Indiana and had this to say about her visit…

“I have driven by the quaint Fredrick-Talbott Inn several times, but I had not ever had a reason to enter.  I’m sure glad that I was given the opportunity to attend a luncheon meeting there last Friday!  Upon arriving, I was greeted by the sight of the three buildings that make up the bed and breakfast and conference center.  The buildings are painted a homey shade of dark green and are connected by flower-lined stone paths.  I instantly forgot that I was right by the busy Allisonville Road, it was like a retreat!  Only the sight of the Conner Prairie balloon voyage brought me back to the present.

Dining Room

Dining Room

Upon entering the main building that houses the dining room, I was delighted by the mural in the opening room.  Some B&Bs have a tendency to over-do themes or be stuffed with country décor.  This is definitely not the case at the Fredrick-Talbott Inn!  I loved the mix of old and new knick-knacks and furniture.  They even had the old LS Ayer’s tearoom chairs, complete with coral seat covers!

I was enchanted with the whole place until I had the luncheon food.  Then I was not just enchanted, I was in love.  The sweet Vidalia onion dressing that accompanied the chicken salad was down right amazing.  If they bottled that stuff, I’d surely be the first in line to buy it!  And being a bed and breakfast, of course coffee cake was in the equation.  The lemon blueberry coffee cake with nuts did not disappoint and it would surely be a nice breakfast for any visitor to the inn.

The Frederick Room

The Frederick Room

After our luncheon meeting, I was able to go on a brief tour of the other portion of the inn where most of the rooms are.  Owner Ed Cohee showed off all nine of the rooms with pride.  Each room in the other house had a different color scheme and each had its own private bath.  All of the rooms were beautiful, but my favorite was the Fredrick room that was painted a striking bright blue and even had a working fireplace.  After working hard at the meeting and eating a huge lunch, it was difficult not to curl up on the cozy looking bed for an afternoon nap!  I returned to the office instead, but I was very glad to have had a visit to the Fredrick- Talbott Inn!”

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I was reading the 2009 US Senior Open Twitter page and read that Pete & Alice Dye will have an autograph session on Friday & Saturday from 2 – 3 p.m – they will be in the merchandise tent.  Very cool!

If you are on Twitter, follow them for behind the scenes inside scoop of all the action (and follow us too!).  2009 US Senior Open: http://twitter.com/09USSeniorOpen.  Hamilton County’s 8 Great Towns: http://twitter.com/8GreatTowns.

Here are a few of their tweets from today:

At 12:48 p.m.:

Eichelberger just eagled 15 with a sand wedge – 84 yards!

At 1:32 p.m.:

Loren Roberts in the flash area doing a post-round interview. He and Tom Lehman both posted 4-under rounds of 68.

At 2:43 p.m.:

Joey Sindelar just finishing up his post-round interview in media center – excited about the big crowds and a great golf course!

At 2:53 p.m.:

Shark sighting in the media center! Greg Norman commends the USGA for a great course setup, says conditions were ideal for scoring today.

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For lunch yesterday, a fellow intern and I decided to ditch our Lean Cuisines waiting in the Bureau’s freezer and ventured out into the Carmel Arts & Design District in search of a good salad.

We didn’t have to go far (ok, we stepped outside the door) before we found just the place: Woody’s Library Restaurant.

Walking in, what first caught our eyes was the rows of bookshelves, creating small, intimate little alcoves for our dining pleasure. Once seated at our table in the corner, we scanned the book titles on the shelf next to us, wondering from where they might have gotten their eclectic collection of books. Residing on those shelves was everything from Shakespeare and Chaucer to Readers’ Digest collections and encyclopedias.

When our menus arrived and we both scanned the soup and salad section, and I had my eye on the Spinach Cobb Salad…that was, until I heard the daily special, which, after much debate, Emma and I both ended up ordering.

And by no means were we sorry.

This warm turkey wrap was full of all kinds of goodies, so much so that we had trouble trying to find the turkey. Dried cranberries, romaine lettuce, pecans, brie cheese, honey mustard and, of course, turkey were all neatly folded together in a HUGE wrap, that, despite its size, neither of us seemed to have much trouble finishing.

Although I am sad that my wonderful turkey wrap was only a one-day special, there were plenty of other things on the menu that I want to be sure to try. If nothing else, I’d go back just to try some of the yummy sounding appetizers – which, considering Woody’s half-price appetizer deal from 3-6 everyday, I might just have to do.

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1. Buy tickets to watch great golf at the 2009 US Senior Open at Crooked Stick in Carmel.  Don’t forget that children 18 and under get in FREE! – Friday, July 31 – Sunday, August 2.

Fionn MacCool's in Fishers

Fionn MacCool's in Fishers

2. Meet with family and friends at Clay Terrace in Carmel for a live performance by Jimmy the Doorman. – Friday, July 31.

3. While the guys are watching the 2009 US Senior Open on the tv, gather gal pals for a day of shopping at Hamilton Town Center in Noblesville.

4. Hire a babysitter and go wine tasting at the Art of Wine event in the Carmel Arts & Design District – Saturday, August 1.

5. Discover your inner Irishman while dining on corned beef & cabbage at Fionn MacCools Irish Pub & Restaurant in Fishers.

6. If the 2009 Senior Open inspires you, spend a day playing golf at Wood Wind Golf Club in Westfield.

7. Watch the movie Legend of Bagger Vance while sitting under the stars at Clay Terrace in Carmel. – Saturday, August 1.

8. Travel back in time to attend “A Farm Wedding” at Conner Prairie in Fishers. – Sunday, August 2.

*Visit us online at 8GreatTowns.com for more details on the activities above and other weekend fun ideas!

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Many of our staff members have been out working tirelessly at Crooked Stick in Carmel for the 2009 US Senior Open.  Many of them have brought back amazing photos for you all to enjoy, which are below.  If you have cool photos, please share them with us!

Crooked Stick 18

After a light rain on Tuesday evening, Karen snapped a shot of a rainbow over the 18th Fairway.

FuzzyZoeller

Our intern, Rachel, was able to catch Fuzzy Zoeller hitting out of a bunker during his practice round.

Kori captured the bright blue sky, beautiful greenery and the cool corporate tents

Kori captured the bright blue sky, beautiful greenery and the cool corporate tents.

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Visiting for the 2009 US Senior Open? For details on golfing, dining discounts, shopping, a map and more download the 2009 USSO Entertainment guide: Guide.

Use this guide when you are away from the greens and explore the 8 Great Towns dotted throughout the county – all within easy access of each other.  From shopping and arts and culture to history and exceptional dining, your golf getaway will be one you will never forget.  Don’t miss after-hour Championship festivities at Clay Terrace and the Carmel Arts & Design District.  Gather with your golf group or meet new Championship fans to discuss the day’s rounds.

Also, if you are in from out of town (or are a local looking for a night away from home) – there is a FREE shuttle service running from select Carmel hotels to the Clay Terrace and Carmel Arts & Design District events. Picture 2

Shuttle schedule:

Run time – 5 pm until 11 pm (last pick up is at 10 pm).  Shuttle will pick up every 30 minutes.

Shuttles will pick up people at the Courtyard by Marriott at 5pm.

Pick up order:

  1. Courtyard by Marriott
  2. Radisson
  3. Springhill Suites
  4. Residence Inn
  5. Renaissance Hotel
  6. Hilton Garden Inn

The first stop is the Carmel’s Arts & Design District, followed by Clay Terrace.

The last shuttle will leave Clay Terrace to head back to hotels at 10pm.

Event Details:

Friday, July 31, 2009 – Jimmy the Doorman in Concert at Clay Terrace (6 pm – 9 pm).  Enjoy this free concert in the grass of Clay Terrace – don’t forget to hit the shops and grab a bite to eat at one of the many restaurants.

Saturday, August 1, 2009 – The Art of Wine in the Carmel Arts & Design District (5 pm – 10 pm).  Free and open to the public.  Local artists, wineries and live entertainment.  $15 to purchase a glass, allows for unlimited wine tasting.  Window shop the cool art galleries and boutiques, or dine at unique local eateries.

Saturday, August 1, 2009 – Movie under the Stars at Clay Terrace.  Golf theme, the Legend of Bagger Vance.  The movie starts around 9 p.m., but before the movie you can shop, stroll, dine or have drinks with friends.

For more details on golfing, dining discounts, shopping, a map and more download the 2009 USSO Entertainment guide: http://8greattowns.com/images/pdfs/2009_us_senio_open_entertainment_guide.pdf

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