Nestled in the heart of the Hoosier State, downtown Indianapolis is home to a dynamic blend of history, culture and modernity. As the vibrant epicenter of Indiana’s capital city, this thriving district is a testament to the coexistence of tradition and progress. If you’re attending the HFTP 2023 Annual Convention this October, here are five top stops under a quarter mile (or 500 steps!) away from the conference worth checking out.
White River State Park (WRSP to its friends) is located immediately to the west of the JW Marriott Indianapolis and boasts a stunning 250 acres of unique green space and cultural attractions, from Military Park and the White River itself to the Indianapolis Zoo, Indiana State Museum and a premier outdoor concert venue, the TCU Amphitheater. The only urban state park in the country, WRSP is one of the largest and most visited tourist destinations in Indiana, welcoming approximately three million visitors each year.
North of the Marriott stands the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art, the only museum of its kind in the Midwest. From its opening in 1989, the Eiteljorg’s mission has been to inspire an appreciation and understanding of the art, history and cultures of the Indigenous peoples of North America and the American West. Artists-in-residence and community outreach programming are frequent events on the museum’s calendar beyond its perennial exhibitions and permanent collection.
The NCAA Hall of Champions, northwest of the Annual Convention venue, is home to two levels of interactive exhibits designed to engage visitors and create a true-to-life understanding of what it takes to make the grade. Visitors are treated to a spectacle featuring all 1,000+ colleges and universities including trivia challenges, video highlights, virtual sports simulators and artifacts donated from schools across the nation.
While the Indianapolis Indians (a triple-A affiliate of the Pittsburgh Pirates) only play the field from April to September, this minor league ballpark just south of the Marriott hosts a variety of events and tours year-round. Named one of the best minor league stadiums in the country by outlets including Baseball America and Sports Illustrated, Victory Field holds over 14,000 fans and was named by American Institute of Architects (AIA) Indianapolis members is 2021 as one of the ten most “architecturally significant” post-war buildings completed in the city.
Looking for a little retail therapy after education sessions are through? Check out the Circle Centre Malljust a short walk further into downtown, home to dozens of retail, dining and entertainment options within its four levels. It is directly connected through the Indianapolis skywalk network to the Indiana Convention Center, Lucas Oil Stadium and twelve area hotels, including the JW Marriott Indianapolis.
As you set your itinerary to celebrate Fall in Indy next month, have you also made all your plans to attend the HFTP 2023 Annual Convention? This year’s conference will be held October 18-20 at the JW Marriott Indianapolis. Be sure you are registered to attend and book your hotel room today. See you there!