ACRL @ Indianapolis: More to do than eat and shop

As usual for a conference of its size, the ACRL 2013 event page lists activities and attractions for attendees who are unfamiliar with the city and looking for something fun or interesting to supplement the conference schedule.

Unfortunately, the ACRL guide and the articles they’ve been running in the ACRL News bulletin focus primarily on dining and shopping. Wanting something more culturally enriching, I decided to develop my own guide to the city and share it with the hopes that colleagues will make use of it and join me in exploring some of these opportunities.

Are We Not Librarians?

Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library

Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library

I don’t know about you, but when I’m in a new city I like to check out a library or two. Here are a few of particular interest.

A tribute to one of my favorite authors, the Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library is located downtown.

The Indianapolis Public Library has numerous locations throughout the city, and offers special events and collections on local history.

The Indiana State Library holds over 3 million manuscripts in their Rare and Special Collections, including a set of broadsides, Civil War-era letters and diaries, and the papers of many political figures.

The Indianapolis Motor Speedway has a museum and Hall of Fame.

The Benjamin Harrison Presidential Site sports a library, rotating exhibits, genealogy information, and offers special events.

The Indiana University – Purdue University Library supports a large collection with a number of specialized areas of focus, including the Payton Philanthropic Studies Library.


Do We Not Enjoy Culture?

The Madame Walker Theatre

The Madame Walker Theatre

How about a musical concert, film, or theatrical production?

The Madame Walker Theatre offers performances of all types including dance, music, motion pictures and theater.

The Old National Centre hosts live theater and musical performances.

Radio Radio features live acts from a range of styles including rock, funk, jazz and folk.

The independent Theater on the Square boast two stages and year-round productions.

The Indiana Repertory Theatre brings you the classics, and the Indianapolis Theater features Broadway hits.

Looking for something a little more spicy? Check out The Cabaret! at the Columbia Club.


Are We Not Knitters and Readers Too?

The Knit Stop

The Knit Stop

Ok, so maybe a little shopping would be excusable after soaking up some local culture. But who wants to wander about aimlessly in a vast anonymous mall filled with generic goods that could be purchased anywhere? I want independent shops, not big chains. Unfortunately “Indy” does not appear very “indie” and I couldn’t find any locally-owned fabric, art supply, or bookbinding shops (if you know of any please leave a note in the comments).

I did find the yarn shops though, so if you’re a knitter like me check out: the Knit Stop, Broad Ripple Knits, or The Mass Ave Knit Shop.

There are also a number of independent book stores in town, including Big Hat Books & Arts, Bookmamas used and new books, Kids Ink Children’s Bookstore, and Jerry Musich Rare & Collectible Books.

I am just beginning to create my schedule for the conference and will post it closer to the event. In the meantime if you’re planning to visit any of these suggestions I hope you’ll contact me.

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