Royal Pin’s four bowling centers boast a total of 270 gleaming lanes, but their widely varied facilities offer far more than games of tenpins. At all four locations, cosmic-bowling nights create a psychedelic atmosphere with fog, music, and black lights.
The Woodland location, though, was voted Best Bowling in Indianapolis 2012 by CityVoter and ups the ante with flat screens above the lanes and cushy couches where players recline while waiting their turn to take a ride through the pinsetter. Its adjacent outdoor mini-golf course, Pirates’ Cove, sends putters on a salty adventure with 18 Lilliputian fairways populated by streams, waterfalls, and a pirate ship. In addition, the location recently received a makeover, with a new midway, lounge, bar and restaurant. In that same center, there's also the two-story Pirate's Quest laser tag, which combines the excitement of laser tag and swashbuckling.
At the Expo location, the theme relates to another exciting frontier: space. In Laser Storm tag, players battle for rights to moon territories. Besides their alleys, Royal Pin also manages the 5-acre Greatimes Family Fun Park, where kids zip around a go-cart track, bounce through a multilevel playland, or pilot bumper boats equipped with blaster squirt guns and highly sensitive grownup detectors.
Located in the heart of downtown Indianapolis in White River State Park, the Indiana State Museum showcases the state’s art, science and cultural history from the prehistoric era to now. The museum’s permanent collection tells Indiana’s story, from glaciers to the first settlers, with a Native American exhibit that highlights the various cultures of local and regional tribes. The first floor showcases the state’s natural history while the second floor has its cultural history, with exhibits like The Ancient Seas, Birth of the Earth, Crossroads of America and Global Indiana. Each year, several traveling exhibits pass through the museum, allowing visitors to see something new with each trip. During Christmastime every year, part of the museum’s third floor transforms into Santa’s home, and children can ride the Santa Claus Express train. The museum also contains an IMAX theater, showing documentaries and family-friendly movies.
Orchard in Bloom’s annual garden show and symposium sponsored by National Bank of Indianapolis in Holliday Park raises funds for The Orchard School, an independent grade school for grades pre-K through 8, as well as Holliday Park. Select local landscapers create macro-landscapes with in-season botany as well as specialized microgardens, designed to showcase specific plant varieties and new design ideas that homeowners can easily incorporate into their own yards. Gardeners can stock up on tools, plants, and art at the Gardener’s Market, full of national and regional artisan vendors. The children’s area entertains youngsters with age-appropriate activities, such as filling flowerpots with soil and playing patty-cake with the limbs of trees.
Plopped in downtown Indianapolis across from the Indiana Convention Center, Indiana/World Skating Academy fosters skills for winter sports on a pair of NHL-size rinks. I/WSA's coaches, whose instruction has helped produce regional, national, and world-class competitors, direct the facility's programs, including learn-to-skate courses designed for skaters with varying levels of experience. In addition to skating, the facility also offers private rink rentals as well as opportunities for speed skating, broomball, and adult hockey leagues. Off the ice, the academy offers less slippery activities, such as weight training, aerobics, jazz, and ballet. A rinkside deli open during public-skating hours keeps legs primed, and an onsite pro shop keeps equipment bags stuffed with the latest gear.
In this day of DVDs and in-home, on-demand options, drive-in theatres are a rarity. But Tibbs Drive-In Theatre continues to provide what’s generally considered to be an old but cherished way to watch movies, particularly around Indianapolis. From early spring through mid-fall each year, Tibbs visitors can enjoy large-screen movies from the comfort of their own vehicles, or pull together an array of lawn chairs and other foldable furniture for strategically-positioned seats inside the facility’s parking lot. A variety of movies run across the four screens, usually as double-headers, making Tibbs an all-night destination. Concession stand options are plentiful and varied, and a large, grass-covered area is available near the main screen, where younger moviegoers often gather and play.
More than 50 years old and 8,500 members strong, the Percussive Arts Society (PAS) strives to promote percussion through education, research, and performances across the world. To carry out this mission, the organization includes more than 50 chapters in the US and 28 chapters abroad, all of which communicate online via resources such as lessons, free practice exercises, and annual events. Each year PAS hosts the annual Percussive Arts Society International Convention—the largest of its kind in the world—in which exhibitors convene to showcase the newest developments in percussion technology, instruments, and publications. The convention also includes over 120 clinics and performances with lauded artists covering all genres and styles of music.