With the eyes of the country on Indianapolis, Indiana during March Madness, there's no better time to learn about the Hoosier state (and our love of basketball)!
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It's not just basketball
...it is *mostly* basketball. Indianapolis is the "amateur sports capital," of the country; very proudly home to the workings of the modern NCAA and its museum, the NCAA Hall of Champions. They call it "Hoosier Hysteria" for a reason. The Circle City frequently hosts major sporting events, including The Big 10 Tournament and portions of March Madness, though we're fortunate enough to be hosting the entire event in 2021.
"We're on the Canal to nowhere..."
In the mid-19th century, the state of Indiana went *big* into state-funded construction of canals for transportation: the wave of the future! Unfortunately for Indiana, the future was actually powered by the new-fangled steam engine...and the canals flopped. The state went bankrupt and we wrote ourselves a new constitution, which included a provision attempting to restrict the state taking on too much debt. In the 20th century, we figured out a way to get around that...pesky...impediment!
Indianapolis is in the Eastern Time Zone
"I know there's a time change between the East Coast and Indiana. Is it 1 hour or 2?"
It's 0! With the exception of a few counties closer to large CST cities (i.e. Chicago), Indiana is on Eastern time. Part of the confusion is presumably because Indiana didn't recognize daylight savings time until 2005, becoming the second-to-last state to give in (Arizona has held out).
500 miles is a long way
The Indianapolis 500, the largest single-day sporting event *in the world* is NOT a NASCAR race. IndyCar is proudly its own thing - higher speeds, more risk, and a more international crowd. Every Memorial Day Weekend, Hoosiers of all stripes head out the "the Track" to watch the field of 33 take 200 laps around the 1.5 mile track.
Indianapolis looks a lot like Washington, D.C.
If you've spent much time in Washington, D.C., the lay-out of Indianapolis might feel familiar to you! That's because the city was designed by Alexander Ralston, a Scottish immigrant who helped Pierre L'Enfant with that original design of D.C. Indianapolis's major streets are named for our fellow states, and the city, like D.C., boasts several major diagonal streets: Virginia, Massachusetts, Indiana, & Kentucky Avenues. Stop by my favorite bar in town, Ralston's, to honor our favorite city planner.
It's all Greek to me!
Crown Hill Cemetery
Indianapolis is home to the third-largest non-government cemetery in the United States, Crown Hill. It's the final resting place of a number of famous Hoosiers, including President Benjamin Harrison, poet James Whitcomb Riley, and bank robber John Dillinger.
100 years of biotech
Indianapolis-based Eli Lilly (the person *and* the company), brought a number of pharmaceutical innovations to the world, including insulin, gelatin capsules, and 19th-century drug fruit flavoring. Today, Lilly continues to be an innovator in the pharmaceutical world, the largest corporation in Indiana, and, through it and the family's funding, a large funder of all things Indianapolis.
Indianapolis residents are often identified as a national example of a "typical" American accent without regional differentiation. Check out Jane Pauley (a proud Hoosier!) on CBS Sunday Morning for one of my favorite examples.
The Circle City, in more ways than one
Thanks for stopping by!
I hope you learned something about Indianapolis that you didn't know, and that you'll come visit us soon in the Hoosier state! I've written quite a few posts about Indy over the years, so I hope you'll consider:
A Weekend in Indianapolis
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