http://www.travelparenteat.com Tue, 20 Dec 2016 23:05:30 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.4.11 Drury Inn and Suites, Columbus, Ohio: 30 Day Road Trip http://www.travelparenteat.com/drury-inn-and-suites-columbus-ohio-30-day-road-trip/ Mon, 31 Aug 2015 16:20:24 +0000 http://www.travelparenteat.com/?p=6775
Thank you DiscoverOhio and Experience Columbus for the complimentary stay to facilitate this post. All opinions are my own. #DiscoverOhio

Who knew Ohio could be such a lovely place to visit? After Boonshoft Museum and Young’s Jersey Dairy, we knew we were going to love Ohio! But we even loved the hotels!

columbus

During our 30 day road trip we stayed in several hotels. We camped. We stayed with family and friends. And we stayed in our time share. So when I say that Drury Inn and Suites is a lovely place to stay, I mean it! And not just compared to other hotels, but in general.

DruryINN

We were able to stay in the Drury Inn and Suites as part of the Roar and Explore Package provided by Experience Columbus. It included a two night stay, tickets to COSi, and to the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, which also features a water park. The reason I mention this is that the package is geared toward families, and the hotel is too!

The service, amenities, and rooms are perfect for families who want to travel in comfort. The lobby was inviting, and one thing I really loved is that while I was checking in my kids were able to plug in their devices. Sounds weird, but the seating area had USB ports so you could plug in right there. It was great.

The suite was great too, as it had 2 queen beds, and then a nice living room area with a pull out bed. It was perfect for our crew, with the separation, it made things like differing bed times, and nap time a lot easier to manage.

kickback

But let’s talk about the amenities. It had the standard stuff like a pool and a breakfast. But there was nothing standard about it. The breakfast was huge, with tons of options. I loved that it had hot and cold options. Oatmeal, biscuits and gravy, waffles, juices, fruit, yogurt. It was great.

However, in addition to the breakfast the hotel also serves a light dinner. They called it the 5:30 Kickback, and it has a rotating menu with soups and salads, and then things like mac and cheese, hot dogs, etc. And drinks. We unfortunately did not make it back to the hotel in time to try it, but if it was anything like breakfast I am sure it was great.

drinks

The one thing we did get to try was the free soda and popcorn that they had available in the lobby from 3 pm to 10 pm. My kids were in heaven. And loved trying all the soda options. It was great for getting them to chill in the room and watch TV while little sister went to bed early.

Drury Inn and Suites also offers free wifi, 60 minutes of free long distance calling, free parking, a corporate shuttle service, and laundry options. Even the bathrooms were great!

h2o

My kids had a great time during our stay. Look at those happy faces, and that bed head!!! As soon as we woke up they wanted to run down to breakfast.

yogurt-at-Drury

Food-at-Drury

One last thing I have to mention is that I appreciated the staff making it as pleasant as possible for us to stay. They went out of their way several times, from carrying a tray of drinks up the room for my youngest son, to alerting us when fresh popcorn was ready, to providing us with a nice gift bag with treats and bottled water when we arrived. The entire experience was pleasant.

bed head

And they even handled unpleasant things well. At one point another guest was taking photos of my kids while we were at breakfast. Don’t ask me why. It is kind of a crazy story, and I won’t tell it all in this post. But basically I saw her doing it, and when I went up to approach her about it she basically ran away from me.

It made me super uncomfortable, and since I couldn’t talk to her about it, I went to the front desk and I talked with the manager. I told him I had observed her photographing my kids, and that it had made me uncomfortable. He was very kind, and said he would keep an eye out for her, and talk to her about it if he noticed her doing it again.

After we left the breakfast area, I saw him approach her. I was happy they took my concerns seriously, and that I did not have to make a big scene.

Whether you are traveling with family, or by yourself, I can’t stress enough how great the Drury Inn and Suites is. I definitely recommend checking out their website to see all they have to offer.

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Young’s Jersey Dairy: Columbus, OH- 30 Day Road Trip http://www.travelparenteat.com/youngs-jersey-dairy-columbus-oh-30-day-road-trip/ Wed, 19 Aug 2015 11:28:27 +0000 http://www.travelparenteat.com/?p=6763
Thank you Discover Ohio and Young’s Jersey Dairy for providing complimentary food and activities to facilitate this post. All opinions are my own.

Well, we are 14 days into our road trip, and we spent the morning at Boonshoft Discovery Museum, then headed about 30 minutes East to Yellow Springs, OH to Young’s Jersey Dairy.

columbus

I was excited to visit this dairy as I love family run businesses, and couldn’t wait to try their homemade cheeses and ice creams!

youngsjerseydairy

I was not disappointed. Although we visited a ton of fun places on our road trip, my favorite stop on our trip was Young’s Jersey Dairy. Holy Cow (pun intended) you guys, we had SO MUCH FUN here! So just know this is a long post, as I can’t say enough good about this place, it is the perfect family destination. But read it all, because you have to see why we loved a dairy so much, and why you should definitely visit!

youngsjerseysilo

We started by meeting one of the owners, Dan Young, and he gave us a tour of the property.

mewithowner

Dan was so nice, and I loved hearing about how his family started their dairy, how it grew and evolved over time, and went from a family farm and dairy to a local place to buy dairy products, and now to a popular family destination, restaurant, and business with 320 employees. You can read the complete history here.

I loved seeing how much pride he takes in his family business.  Also, the amount of work, thought, and effort they have put in to making it a fantastic destination. They are continually working to improve the options offered, and meet guest expectations and exceed them. They expect guests to have fun, and they work hard to make it so. And they sure succeeded with us!

Derrick-feeding-goatOne of the things I loved so much about this property is how many fun options there are. Our first activity was feeding the goats. My kids loved letting the goats eat the food right off their hands. Derrick was a little shy at first, but quickly got the hang of it!

goat-heads

And the goats loved all the attention the kids were giving them, and the food! You can buy pellet food to feed them for quarters, and you will definitely get your money’s worth, as they will all stick their little heads out and eat!

goatOf course goats are not the only animals at Young’s Jersey Dairy. You can also see the cows. They milk them each day, and you can go watch them milk. They use the milk to make some of the products they offer, and get other local milk to make the rest, as they only have about 30 cows on property. The milk is used to make the ice cream and cheese offered in the Dairy Store, and at the Golden Jersey Inn.

jerseycows

The ice cream is all made right on property in machines called batch freezers, which make 5 or 10 gallons of ice cream per batch. They have seasonal flavors, and a featured flavor of the week. They serve it at both the Dairy Store and The Golden Jersey Inn! Just be warned, the servings are HUGE! And delicious!

Ice-Cream

This is a 2-scoop cone! And boy did he love it. Fortunately they do offer kiddie cones as well, and tons of other options. I got a rootbeer float that was awesome. My son got the Buckeye Sunday, which I helped myself to. My sister got a milk shake. She was thrilled that it was thick and tasty!

Ice-Cream-dishing

The staff was so nice and let my kids try all the various flavors they wanted to try. And even brought our ice cream out to our table since our party was large and a little chaotic. But the ice cream….gahhhh..every flavor and option was rich, creamy, and exactly what you would want and expect when getting ice cream at a dairy farm! Sooooo good.

ice cream nose at youngs

Just the ice cream is reason enough to go visit Young’s Jersey Dairy. And the friendly and helpful employees are another.

But wait…there is more! In addition to ice cream, hospitality, and animals, there is what is called Udders and Putters!  Which is a ton of family fun! There is mini golf, batting cages, a driving range, a big slide, moovers and shakers (a barrel train type ride for kids), a kiddie area, and more!

uttersandputtersYou guys, we spent hours having fun here! And stayed until close.

Batting Cages Young's

The batting cages were so much fun, and my kids all played until their hands were sore from batting. The covered cages offered slow and fast pitch softball as well as 4 different speeds of baseball. It rained a little while we were there, but that did not stop things because they have fans that dry the pitching machines. Even I jumped in to show my kids my mad batting skills. Elbow up kiddos, elbow up!

CC Youngs

I am pretty sure the little one had the most fun. I literally had to pick her up, and forcibly remove her from the property when it was time to leave, and she fell asleep instantly once we got in the car because she wore herself out!

CC fun

Note the messy face! She couldn’t be stopped long enough for me to wipe it up! She rode Moover’s and Shakers about 80 times, no exaggeration. And then headed to the Kiddie Coral to enjoy the bouncy houses, rock wall, putting for kids, and her favorite–the tricycles.

YJD kid play area

There were a bunch of John Deere tractors, and kiddie bikes and trikes, and a little track for the little ones to ride on. Before this day, she did not know how to ride a trike, but she learned quick. I kept asking her if she was ready to go, and she kept saying, “Um, I’m riding my bike mom. Later”

But don’t worry, they had cars to ride for big kids too.

Go karts peddal

Their pedal karts are so much fun. They have employees there to help adjust the seats so they are in the right place for your leg length, and to rescue you if you get stuck somewhere.

My kids and I raced several times, and I am happy to say I was the winner! It was a great work out, and I needed it since we ate so much ice cream while we were there because it was so good.

Hannahgolfing

I had never been to a driving range before, so it was fun to try my hand at it. I am TERRIBLE! But it was so much fun. Hannah (my little sister) was much better than I at it.

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My favorite was the slide! The kids loved to race. They usually beat me, payback for beating them on the pedal karts. We had so much fun. I couldn’t drag my kids away from the place. They are open late, which is so nice, as we felt we could stop for a snack or dinner because it wouldn’t mean missing out on the fun!

YoungsDairyCows

Speaking of the food, we had snacks early in the day, with some Sweet Chili Fried Cheese Curd that was seriously so yummy. I basically ate the whole plate myself!

Fried-Cheese-CurdsAfter spending hours playing, we ate dinner at The Golden Jersey Inn. It was great. The portions were large, the food fantastic, and the atmosphere was fun and homey.

The food was served with Sweet Potato Bread, applesauce, and coleslaw. The sweet potato bread BLEW. MY. MIND! It was so good. I will definitely be trying to recreate it at home! You guys, I liked it so much I went back and bought a loaf to take home with me.

youngs dairy restaurantThe whole property was awesome. There were old tractors that used to be operational on the farm, silo’s, the Red Barn, and fun to be had at every turn.

Dairy-Tractor

Basically, go to Young’s! You will love it so much. You can buy wrist bands to do the Udder and Putters, and enjoy food at the Dairy Store and The Golden Jersey Inn. And take a minute to say hi to the goats!

youngsjerseydairybarnI have told my husband so much about this place he asked me when we were going back! Soon I hope.

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Boonshoft Museum of Discovery: Columbus, OH- 30 Day Road Trip http://www.travelparenteat.com/boonshoft-museum-of-discovery-columbus-oh-30-day-road-trip/ http://www.travelparenteat.com/boonshoft-museum-of-discovery-columbus-oh-30-day-road-trip/#comments Tue, 18 Aug 2015 23:24:50 +0000 http://www.travelparenteat.com/?p=6721
Thank you Discover Ohio for providing complimentary tickets to the museum to facilitate this post. All opinions are my own.

We made it to Columbus Ohio! On the way we stopped in Dayton, OH to have some fun at the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery.
columbus

During our 30 day road trip one of our stops was the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery. And I can’t wait to share all the fun details with you guys because this is a MUST SEE children’s museum.

Boonshoft

Boonshoft is far more than a museum. In fact it is an accredited zoo, a Planetarium, and an observatory as well as a place for kids and adults alike to explore, play, and enjoy all while learning.

The museum houses a number of exhibits, including a water table, a climbing tower, over 60 animals native to Ohio, and tons of places for kids to play, make (fake) pizza, learn about recycling or be a veterinarian, and so much more. It is a 94,000 square foot building, and each and every area is full of potential learning and fun!

Exploring-at-Boonshoft

When we pulled into the Boonshoft Museum, we were all feeling a little tired. We were 2 weeks in to our trip, and had been going full speed. It took some convincing to get my kids out of the car. They were so funny about going to “a museum.” My oldest son even said, “Do they have wifi so I won’t be bored?” But about 10 steps in the door, they changed their tune.

Oscar-Boonshoft-Science-Central

All four of my kids were like little pin balls bouncing from one exhibit to the next, and couldn’t get enough. They particularly loved the climbing tower after being in the car for a few hours.

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The bigs went up quick, and my little miss just had to follow. But once they got to the top, there was even more to see.

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My kids loved being able to see all of the animals that are native to Ohio, and they also enjoyed being able to touch sea life, and learn all about the starfish.

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I loved that my son took his iPod out, not to play games, but to take photos. He was excited.

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In addition to several learning based exhibits, like the Oscar Boonshoft Science Central, there was straight up play.

legos

My son absolutely loves LEGOS, and he enjoyed the big bin full of LEGOS that encouraged creativity.

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One of the places we spent a great deal of time was the Pizza Kitchen. It was seriously cute you guys!

boonshoft pizza kitchen in Ohio

There was a place to order your pizza, a pizzeria style eatery, a pizza delivery truck, and the kitchen! You could put your order in, then the “employee” would take your order into the back, and build a pizza. There was a cute kitchen area with bins of “ingredients” and a pizza oven.

pizza kitchen tpe

My kids loved being able to create pizzas for me, and play in the delivery cart.

pizza 2

My favorite part of the museum was the Color Wall, where you can dance, move, and pose in front of a light, and see the colors dance across a wall. My kids loved it. I loved it. Definitely check it out.

color-wallBe sure to check out the other days on our 30 day road trip, and all the fun stops we had along the way.

 

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Columbus, Ohio: 30 Day Road Trip Day 14-15 http://www.travelparenteat.com/columbus-ohio-30-day-road-trip-day-14-15/ http://www.travelparenteat.com/columbus-ohio-30-day-road-trip-day-14-15/#comments Fri, 14 Aug 2015 11:32:03 +0000 http://www.travelparenteat.com/?p=6709
Thank you DiscoverOhio and Experience Columbus for the complimentary gift cards, hotel stays, and activities to help facilitate this post. All opinions are my own.

On days 14 and 15 of our 30 day road trip we drove from Indianapolis to Columbus, stopping in Dayton and a few other stops along the way. This was one of our favorite portions of the road trip! It was a blast, educational, entertaining, tasty, and fun!

columbus

Of course, we had so much fun that I can’t fit it all into just one post, so I am going to break the days up into activities, and share all the fun, tips, advice, and a glimpse into how you absolutely SHOULD spend time if you are in the Columbus area.

Boonshoft Museum of Discovery

Our first stop was in Dayton, at the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery. This museum is a children’s museum full of science and discovery. They offered various areas, from animals that are live, to play recycle centers, a climbing tower, classes, and more.

Boonshoft

My kids spent a couple hours happily playing and learning, and can’t wait to try some of the Science@Home experiments they offer.

Young’s Jersey Dairy

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We then drove a half hour east to Young’s Jersey Dairy, which is an operational dairy, restaurant, and family fun destination! I can’t say enough good about Young’s Jersey Dairy.

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You guys, we had the BEST time here. My kids literally did not want to leave, and so we stayed, and stayed, and stayed. We left at 10 PM when they were starting to close everything up. You might be asking why my kids would want to stay at a dairy, so I will give you a hint: to play! There is a lot more to Young’s Jersey Dairy than the cows! So be sure to read the post in a few days!

Drury Inn & Suites Convention Center

We drove into Columbus, and we stayed at the Drury Inn and Suites 2 nights while in Columbus. It is the ideal family friendly hotel with a huge breakfast, and even a dinner offered in the lobby. Popcorn and fountain drinks offered daily from 3-10 pm, comfortable beds, plenty of space in the room, and more.

DruryINN

We loved our stay, so be sure to check out all the reasons I recommend this hotel, including a little story about some drama with another guest! Good stuff.

COSi

 COSIoutsideExperience Columbus hooked us up with the Roar & Explore Package, which includes tickets to COSI hands-on science museum and the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium. Being a big aquarium and zoo lover, and only having one day, I thought we would pop into Cosi for a few minutes, then head to the zoo. That “few minutes” turned into several hours packed full of fun and learning. COSi is a MUST SEE destination, well worth the trip to Columbus!

Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

We then headed to the Zoo and Aquarium, and oh yeah…waterpark! Yep, you read that right, it is a 3 in 1 destination with great water slides, lazy river, and wave pool, an aquarium, including a Rays exhibit where the kids can touch the rays, and of course, a huge, impressive, and very nice zoo.

waterpark

The zoo portion has incredible offerings such as the Heart of Africa, Polar Frontier, Australia, the Congo Expedition, and more! My only regret is not having more days to spend there because with how hot it was my kids just wanted to swim, but you do NOT want to miss the zoo and aquarium parts!

Heart-of-Africa-CoZoo

As you can see, we had some action packed days of family fun, and loved exploring and experiencing Columbus. I had no idea how much that city has to offer, and we are already trying to figure out when we can go back and spend more time there!

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Trader’s Point Creamery: 30 Day Road Trip- Indianapolis, IN http://www.travelparenteat.com/traders-point-creamery-30-day-road-trip-indianapolis-in/ Thu, 13 Aug 2015 13:53:40 +0000 http://www.travelparenteat.com/?p=6693
Thank you VisitIndy.com for providing a complimentary gift card to facilitate this post. All opinions are my own.

A delicious creamery and restaurant with a cheese and ice cream producing facility on site, and lovely grounds.

Indianapolis

The last stop on our Indianapolis portion of our road trip was Trader’s Point Creamery.

TraderPoint

Their motto is Fresh. Simple. Organic, and that is exactly what you get when you order food or ice cream at Trader’s Point.

TradersPoint1

The property is lovely, and a great place to relax and enjoy a nice afternoon. The facility offers plenty to do and see with well manicured grounds, a view into the production of the cheese and ice cream, the cows on property, with a chance to see them being milked, a full service restaurant, and a store, as well as a place to get ice cream, milkshakes, and yogurts!

dillanTP

We got there late afternoon, and so decided to get some ice cream, and walk the grounds, then later picked up some dinner to go. The restaurant is fancier, and so I opted to skip sitting down in there with my 4 rambunctious kids.

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The ice cream was a real hit!

DairyBarTP

And the cute little cups and spoons reminded me of the gelato we got in Europe. My sister got a shake, and they asked her how thick she wanted it. And that made her very happy as she is a huge fan of a thick shake, and they can be hard to come by.

ice-cream-scoop-TraderPoint

And the service was great. I loved this tip cup, and thought it was pretty funny.

TradersPoint3

You guys, you have to go there! It is so beautiful. Hanging flower baskets, gorgeous furniture, cute rustic decor, and more!

TPGuys, we loved being here!

 

Traderpointeatingicecream

Can you tell my boys enjoyed their treat?

Traderpointeaticecreamboys

I loved being able to take my kids to see the cows, and help them make that connection that the ice cream they are eating is made from milk, and the cows that produce that milk live, and are cared for right there. They got to see the cows heading back into the field after being milked.

Traderpointcows

So tour the grounds, and enjoy some ice cream, and if you want a nice night out, head up to the Loft Restaurant for some lovely dining, with cheese plates, and a view of the cheese room.

cheeseroomTP

A nice selection of farm to table foods, and tons of fresh, organic, and local foods!

menuTpfarm

If you find yourself in Indianapolis, go and check it out.

glassesTPGo to TradersPointCreamery.com to learn more about this property and what it has offer.

 

 

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Conner Prairie Interactive History Park: 30 Day Road Trip-Indianapolis http://www.travelparenteat.com/conner-prairie-interactive-history-park-30-day-road-trip-indianapolis/ Tue, 04 Aug 2015 11:09:39 +0000 http://www.travelparenteat.com/?p=6689
Thank you VisitIndy.com for providing complimentary tickets to facilitate this post. All opinions are my own.

IndianapolisBy now you probably know we are spending 30 days on the road, and traveling more than 6000 miles. One of the stops we made was Indianapolis, IN, where we got to enjoy great food, fun museums, and for today’s post Conner Prairie Interactive History Park.

conner prairie historyThis park is housed on a huge property, and offers kids the chance to experience life in the past in an educational and entertaining way.

The park is divided into sections, and each section features different parts of life from Indiana’s past. For example, you could visit the farm area, and pet live sheep and goats.

ConnerPrairieGoat

You could learn about carding wool, and how it is cleaned, carded, spun, and used to make things.

ConnerPrairieCardWool

You could visit the Potter’s Shop and learn about pottery, and for $5 you could even buy some clay and make your own pinch pot or creation of your choice.

CP-potter

My kids absolutely loved getting creative with their clay, and made turtles!

pottery conner prairie

There was a section devoted to the early 1800’s and it had an Indian Wigwam, a Trader’s Post, and more. My youngest son was very interested in trading something for an animal pelt. He even tried to get the traders to trade his iPad for one. And the rest of our road trip, every time he saw road kill he would ask if we could stop and get it so we could take it to Conner Prairie and trade with it. Hahaha

Traders-at-ConnerPrairieI absolutely loved how educational each area was. We learned how to tell the difference between male and female skunks. It is how many stripes they have on their backs. According to the guide, the female skunk has 2 stripes, and the male just 1.

ConnerPrairieSkunkOne of the highlights of our time at Conner Prairie was a hot air balloon ride.

hotair

When you first enter the park, there is a complex that offers a tethered hot air balloon ride. We were able to go on it, and see the park from 377 feet in the air.

CB hot air balloon

Everyone in the family enjoyed the hot air adventure, especially CC.

ConnerPrairieHAB

My recommendation is that if you are going to do this ride, take the time to explore the hallways before the entrance to learn about ballooning, and the history of it. I believe that learning about it makes it more fun for the kids.

ConnerPrairie2

They will be able to see how it works, who used it, some history and facts.

ConnerPrairie3

They can also pose for a fun picture inside a miniature balloon, as it is really hard to get a picture in the actual balloon since it is so huge.

Balloon

My oldest son is very curious, and was worried about whether or not the balloon would be safe. He tends to be a worrier, but the balloonist took the time to explain the mechanisms that would keep us safe, and show how the balloon is tethered. She also made sure to let the kids know exactly what to expect and when so there were no surprise bounces, or sways. The kids loved the landing, which takes a few minutes to accomplish!

ConnerPrairie4There are tons of different areas to visit, from indoor areas where kids can learn and play, to outdoor areas where they can take part in past times from the past, or learn from experts about things like wood carving, sheep shearing, etc.

CC-stilts-CP

CC loved trying her hand at the stilts.

CP rooms

And I enjoyed hearing about the tools and methods used in the past to create furniture, to trade, and to make daily life enjoyable and as comfortable as possible.

I highly recommend spending a day at Conner Prairie Interactive History Park, you will need a whole day! And don’t forget to pick up some Triple X rootbeer in the gift shop. If you go to the check out desk you can get an ice cold bottle! And it is delicious.

Check back tomorrow to see what other fun things we enjoyed during our visit to Indianapolis.

 

 

 

 

 

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30 Day Road Trip: Indianapolis- White River State Park and the NCAA Hall of Champions http://www.travelparenteat.com/30-day-road-trip-indianapolis-white-river-state-park-and-the-ncaa-hall-of-champions/ http://www.travelparenteat.com/30-day-road-trip-indianapolis-white-river-state-park-and-the-ncaa-hall-of-champions/#comments Mon, 03 Aug 2015 13:40:26 +0000 http://www.travelparenteat.com/?p=6657
Thank you VisitIndy.com for providing complimentary tickets to the NCAA Hall of Champions to facilitate this post, all opinions are my own. Indianapolis

If you have been following along on our journey, you know we are on a 30 day road trip, and one of our stops was Indianapolis. We have had a lot of fun here, eating at great places, and visiting fun museums and discovery centers. But one of the highlights of this stop for my oldest was the NCAA Hall of Champions.

NCAA

He is a true sports lover, and knows a lot of stats, and gets very immersed in the game. So having the chance to check out the NCAA Hall of Champions, and see photos, memorabilia, and information about some of the greatest college athletes was a dream come true for him.

WhiteRivDillanBB

WhiteRiverDillanThe NCAA Hall of Champions in located in White River State Park, which is a huge state park that houses all kinds of attractions, from a zoo and botanic garden to several different museums, outdoor venues, and more.

WhiteRiverFam

We spent an afternoon exploring all that it had to offer, from pedal carts, and paddle boats, to lovely walking areas, and fun sculptures and artwork. Then we enjoyed the NCAA Hall of Champions.

White-RiverLex

The Hall has two levels. The downstairs is educational, it has displays of the various sports included in the NCAA, photos of athletes, memorabilia, a fun area where younger kids can mix up mascots, quizzes, and more. And the upstairs in interactive.

WhiteRiverHallofChamps

I bet you can’t guess what part my kids liked best? The interactive part was very cool, and we spent several hours there, despite it not being particularly large. It contains a basketball court, with bleachers, electronic simulator games for things like soccer, football, etc. and tons of other interactive exhibits, such as making calls as a ref, watching how fast tennis players hit balls, trying a riffle, trying on the face mask of a fencing suit, checking to see what your vertical is, and more!

WhiteRiverNCAA

WhiteRiverBBjpg

There was something for everyone to enjoy. While Dillan was drawn to the basketball, my girls loved the simulator, and my son Derrick loved the water station.

WhiteRiverCC
I loved that while the focus was on sports, there was a whole area dedicated to GPA, and maintaining the required 2.3 and how important schooling is. It talks about how most athletes go on to be professionals in something other than athletics, and education is important. As a parent of a child whose greatest wish is to go pro in basketball, but who genetically will be lucky to be 6 feet tall, I loved the emphasis on life beyond sports.

WhiteRiverKidsinCornu
Sports lovers will enjoy the NCAA Hall of Champions, and it is definitely a great way to spend an afternoon. But be sure to also explore the other parts of White River State Park. There is garage parking on site, and some surface lots, though if there is an event the surface lots are not available. As I had my cargo car topper, I found street parking, and walked over, but it was a lovely walk through the park, and over the river.

white river park

Don’t forget to check out the other fun ways to spend time in Indianapolis, especially for families. Check out the Rhythm! Discovery Center, Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, and check back tomorrow for a look at Conner Prairie Interactive History Park, which was also very fun!

And if you are planning a visit to Indianapolis, let VisitIndy.com help you with your planning.

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Le Peep- 30 Day Road Trip: Indianapolis, IN http://www.travelparenteat.com/le-peep-30-day-road-trip-indianapolis-in/ http://www.travelparenteat.com/le-peep-30-day-road-trip-indianapolis-in/#comments Sat, 01 Aug 2015 11:24:21 +0000 http://www.travelparenteat.com/?p=6641
Thank you VisitIndy.com for providing complimentary gift cards to facilitate this post. All opinions are my own. #LoveIndy

Le Peep Restaurant is an Indianapolis favorite, and now a Yerkes favorite too with a cozy atmosphere, great tasting and affordable food, and great service!

LePeep-Menu

Before I tell you about Le Peep, be sure to check out the overview of our time spent in Indianapolis, as well as all the stops on this 30 Day Road Trip.

I can’t say enough good about Le Peep. We had a late breakfast at Le Peep on our second day in Indianapolis, and everyone loved the food SO much, we ended up eating there a second time before heading out of Indy on our way to our next stop.

Not only was the food exactly what you would want from a breakfast diner, but the atmosphere was cute and cozy, and the service was outstanding. le-peep-restaurant

Let’s talk about the food!

We ordered breakfast foods. We got pancakes, french toast, and a breakfast skillet called Beach Combers Skillet. The food came up quickly, was hearty, and exactly what you would picture if someone told you Grandma was in the back cooking.

beach-combers-skillet

The Beach Combers Skillet had potatoes, cheese, sun dried tomatoes, avocado, and egg, and a whole lot of yum! I was super happy with the breakfast skillets, and the next day I tried the Gypsy version. The potatoes were perfectly cooked, the flavors spot on, and all in all it was tasty and filling.

But the real show stopped for our group was the Chocolate Chip Pancakes from the kid’s menu. They were Mickey Mouse shaped, and came with fresh whipped butter, powdered sugar, and of course chocolate chips! 

pancakeMy kids scarfed them down, and all ordered them the next day because they enjoyed them so much. And I loved that they were filled up and not begging for snacks and treats all day while we enjoyed the White River State Park and NCAA Hall of Champions. chocolate chip pancakesI am sure everything on the menu is great. So let’s talk about the atmosphere. Sometimes I hate taking my kids out to eat because, being kids, they spill, they talk loud, and they don’t really fit in at “fancy” places.

While Le Peep was nice, it had vinyl table cloths, and a comfortable feel. My kids felt so grown up getting glass cups, but when one spilled, the staff came by, cleaned it up with a smile, and didn’t make them feel bad about the mess.

le-peep-tableI loved that they left a pitcher of water at the table, and provided a great kid’s menu with activities to keep the kids busy while we waited for the food to arrive.

Even my “big kid” sister enjoyed Le Peep, and ordered the Chocolate Chip Pancakes our second visit!

Hannah

If you have a chance to visit Indianapolis, be sure to stop in. You get the diner feel, excellent service, an affordable menu (I think my meal was around $10, and the kid’s meals around $4), and most importantly great food.

syrup

We all left happy, even my Miss Grouchy, the terrible two!

CC

Be sure to check back tomorrow to see the other fun places we played, and meals we ate on our visit to Indianapolis!

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B’s Po Boy – 30 Day Road Trip: Indianapolis, IN http://www.travelparenteat.com/bs-po-boy-30-day-road-trip-indianapolis-in/ http://www.travelparenteat.com/bs-po-boy-30-day-road-trip-indianapolis-in/#comments Fri, 31 Jul 2015 10:28:57 +0000 http://www.travelparenteat.com/?p=6520
Thank you VisitIndy.com for the complimentary gift cards to help facilitate this post. All opinions are my own. #LoveIndy

30 Day Road Trip: Indianapolis

Indianapolis

In case you missed it, I am on a 30 day road trip around the country with my 4 kids and my little sister! Check out the details here.

One of our stops during our 30 days on the road was Indianapolis, IN. You guys! I can’t even begin to tell you how awesome this city is, and how much fun we had. VisitIndy.com helped us set up an awesome itinerary full of food and fun!

One of the places we ate was B’s Po Boy!

B's Po Boy, a cajun, creole, NOLA inspired restaurant in Indy, IN

Isn’t it a cute place? I just loved how darling it was.

Po Boy Outside 2

It was clean, had a great interior, and a cozy atmosphere! And even had VooDoo dolls, and NOLA theme! I had to explain what VooDoo was to my kids. Great fun!

Inside of PoBoys

The food was delicious! It was authentic Po Boys, Cajun food, and Creole! In fact, they even had alligator on the menu. Of course, I had to order it because I wanted my kids to try it.

Alligator Bites

This restaurant was really fun. Not only because the menu was fun, but it actually had activities for while you wait for your food. Out on the patio there is Jenga and Bocce, and the servers will happily help you get a game going. My kids had so much fun out there I had to drag them to the table to eat.

Jenga Po Boy

Needless to say, my kids had a blast with the Jenga!

poboy sandwich

And then we ate! And ate! And ate! I ate my po boy so fast, I barely remembered to get a picture, a terrible one too, but don’t let it fool you, this BBQ shrimp po boy was delicious!

Po boy menu

If you find yourself in Indianapolis, head over to South Shelby Street to B’s Po Boy and give it a try! Even my picky little eater liked it!

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Children’s Museum – 30 Day Road Trip: Indianapolis, IN http://www.travelparenteat.com/childrens-museum-30-day-road-trip-indianapolis-in/ http://www.travelparenteat.com/childrens-museum-30-day-road-trip-indianapolis-in/#comments Thu, 30 Jul 2015 11:15:35 +0000 http://www.travelparenteat.com/?p=6564
Thank you VisitIndy.com for the complimentary tickets to facilitate this post. All opinions are my own. #LoveIndy

Fun, education, and oh so many options for entertainment! Plan an entire day for the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, you are going to NEED it! 

Indianapolis

In case you missed it, I took my kids on a 30 day road trip. You can read about it here. One of our stops was Indianapolis, IN and while we were there we spent some time at the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis. But not nearly enough time.

I have been to a Children’s Museum before. Several in fact, but I have to say that none have been nearly as impressive as this one! In fact, after over 3 hours in the museum, we barely saw half of it, and certainly did not have enough time. Despite living in UTAH, I seriously debated getting a membership. I think we could spend all day, every day, of our vacation there, and my kids would be thrilled.

ChildrenMuseum

My favorite exhibit I did get to see was the Take Me There China! Obviously I love to travel the world, and learn about new cultures, and The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis did a fantastic job of creating an exhibit of Chinese culture. It was full of fun and educational activities for the kids.

China 2

From calligraphy to stamping, to cooking in a Chinese restaurant, to a puppet show, there were so many ways for kids to spend time. I think we could have spent the whole day just in this section. There are panda bears, markets, medicine shops, and so much to learn, discover, and explore, I get a little overwhelmed just trying to write about it.

Chinese Caligraphy

In addition, there are employees who interact with the kids, and talk to them about China! It was very cool to watch, to learn, and to have fun.

I enjoyed it, my kids enjoyed it, and my teenage sister even had a great time. She spent quite a long time at one of the kiosk things on the wall that teach you phrases in Chinese. So don’t let the name “Children’s” Museum fool you, adults will have a good time too.

China Children MuseumOf course, I just loved watching my 2 year old interact at all of the different areas set up. She would run to one, and get fully immersed, then we’d try to make her move to another. She never wanted to leave whatever place she was at. But she had fun all over the museum.

CC at Children MuseumShe spent the last hour we were there playing in the top level play area, which houses a Carousel, several little houses that are set up for kids to play in. A tree house, and more! We stayed until close, and when the employees came up to let us know the museum was closing she cried.

Treehouse at Children Museum

But can you blame her? How fun does this look?

Of course, she was not the only one that had fun. My two big kids headed off with Aunt Hannah a few minutes in, and I did not see them again until close. They made their way through the museum, and left with tons to tell me! My youngest son loved the Transformers exhibit. And was happy to stick with me, as long as we spent some real time in that area.

Transform child museumHe chose his side! And loved watching the live demo of a transformer, transforming right before the eyes of the kids.

It was really cool, and I loved the way it was handled. There was a rope to help keep the kids back, but at one point a little boy who just couldn’t contain his excitement for the Transformers slipped under the rope, and had to touch. Rather than scolding, the employee putting on the show bent down, asked him a couple questions, and redirected him back under the ropes. It was perfect!

TransformerBasically we had an amazing time, and I definitely want to go back. If for no other reason than to see the cool water clock and amazing glass sculpture again!

Glass sculpture

Learn more about the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis on their website.

 

 

 

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