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8 Great Things to do the 3rd Weekend of October 2014

Oct 16, 2014 by Hamilton County CVB

Ghost walks, pumpkins, a run-in with the Headless Horseman... Halloween happenings are beginning in Hamilton County, Indiana! Discover tricks and fall treats this weekend throughout the county, read on for some great ideas. Check our online calendar for even more spook-tacular events!   GhostTour Group at tree

1. Only a few more weeks to catch the Headless Horseman and Apple Store at Conner Prairie! Don't miss these fall traditions of spooky fun and tasty treats. Conner Prairie transforms into Conner Scairie and it's a sight to behold!

2. Speaking of spooky, secure reservation now for local ghost walks, they are sure to sell out. Unseen Press guides walks in Noblesville and Westfield to show off history and haunts. Also check out the Conner Prairie ghost walk to hear tales from employees about sightings on the property. BOO!

3. Deal with the Dealer Day is this Saturday at the Carmel Old Town Antique Mall. Bring up to 3 items to be appraised by local antique dealers, or just stop in to buy or sell. The mall is a great place to uncover treasures like vintage Halloween décor. Halloween Classic

4. Pumpkins, pumpkins, pumpkins. It's going to be a beautiful weekend for picking the perfect one in Hamilton County! Check out the Hamilton Harvest Train, Stonycreek Farm's annual Pumpkin Harvest Festival, Spencer Farm, or the Russell Farms Pumpkin Patch Country Fall Festival.

5. Touted one of the Midwest's finest tournaments, teams from Indiana and the region will gather for the 23rd annual Halloween Classic soccer tournament beginning this weekend. Fans are welcome to watch matches at Fishers' Cyntheanne Park and Hamilton Southeastern High School- admission is free! The boys tournament begins this Saturday and the girls teams will play October 25-26.

6. Love fish? Luckily for you, this Friday is the "Fish is the Dish" event. Participating restaurants in Hamilton County and the Indianapolis area will feature a special healthy seafood menu item. See the participating Hamilton County Restaurants here. Strawtown Koteewi Fall Hike

7. See some entertainment on the cheap in Fishers this weekend. Check out the free Fall Movies in the Park this Friday at the Nickel Plate District Amphitheater. Or shell out just 12 bucks to see a fun musical at Studio 37. BEEHIVE! The 60's Musical is being presented both Friday and Saturday night. 

8. Strawtown Koteewi Park in Noblesville is ablaze with fall color! Take a hike on one of the many multi-purpose trails and check out the falling leaves on the banks of the river. Stick around in the evening on Saturday for spooky stories around a bonfire.

Live Beard Contest Shows Off More Than Flowing Facial Hair

Oct 15, 2014 by Hamilton County CVB

Beards & Brews

Just in time for the cool breeze of Fall, the brand-new Beards & Brews Championship will heat up a battle of beards, many representing local Central Indiana breweries. The event will be held on Saturday, November 1st from Noon to 4 p.m. in the 8th & Maple Ave. Parking Lot (just behind the Visitor Center alley) in downtown Noblesville. Barley Island

Now through the end of this month, partnering breweries Barley Island, Grand Junction Brewing Company, Triton, Fountain Square and Three Wise Men Brewery will all host preliminary beard contests on their turf. The preliminary winners from each of these breweries will compete to be named champion in the following categories on November 1st: Best of Show, Longest Beard, Thickest Beard, and Most Creatively Groomed Beard.

"This contest is not exclusive to those representing the participating breweries," explained event presenter Chris Owens, Executive Director of Noblesville Main Street. "Anyone wishing to enter their beard into the ‘community walk up' portion of the event is encouraged to do so-the more bearded, the merrier."

In addition to beard watching and contesting, this event is packed with fun for adults 21 and older. Each of the five breweries, plus Sun King will be on site selling their craft beer during the event. DJ Helicon will be on site to mix it up and derby girls will be doing demonstrations. Derby girls? Yes, The Circle City Derby Girls will show oHistoric Noblesville Squareff their derby moves at the top of every hour. Top it all off with shopping on the Retro 101 Fashion Bus and beard making, courtesy of Nickel Plate Arts

"Noblesville is known for having an abundance of great events," said Alaina Shonkwiler, Economic Development Specialist for The City of Noblesville. "Ultimately, the goal of Beards & Brews is to bring new people to Noblesville, showing off the great places and experiences we have to offer."

Tickets are available at the event for just $5 per person to attend, with a portion of proceeds being donated to Movember Indy in honor of November and its efforts to bring awareness of cancers affecting men. There is no fee to enter your beard in the "walk up" community category.

For event updates and information, visit




All-IN with Santiago Jaramillo

Oct 14, 2014 by Kate Burkhardt

Santiago All-In Fam pictureWhen Santiago Jaramillo completed the challenge to "share a family story piece of advice, photo or recipe from an ancestor," he not only reached back in time, but also across thousands of miles.

The photo above depicts his grandmother (left middle) at a social club called San Fernando in Colombia.

"The night this photo was taken, she didn't want to go to the party that particular evening," Santiago said. "However, in a twist of fate, this happened to be the night she met my grandfather (left)."

The Bluebridge CEO credits his grandmother with his love of board games. As a child, he frequently spent evenings at her home in Cali, Colombia playing games like Parcheesi.

"She was competitive," Santiago said. "She accused me of cheating whenever I won!"

Santiago's family immigrated to the United States when he was 10 years old, and at 18, he found himself in Indiana starting college at Indiana Wesleyan University.
After starting mobile app development company Bluebridge in his dorm room and graduating from college (in that order), Santiago learned about Launch Fishers, a coworking space for small businesses and entrepreneurs in the Fishers Library's basement. In need of office space other than the 96th Street Starbucks, Santiago decided Hamilton County was the perfect environment to live and grow a business.

Now, two years and more than 25 employees later, Santiago still calls Hamilton County home - and still loves board games. When he's not leading the Bluebridge team or challenging friends to board game play, Santiago enjoys watching spectacular sunsets from one of Hamilton County's many green spaces or playing pick up soccer at Holland Park in Fishers. 

Show that you're All-IN and WIN! Share a photo of you and your family completing All-IN challenges on Twitter with the hashtag #Allin_HC or go to to enter!

Santiago JaramilloSantiago Jaramillo Head Shot
Job: Founder and CEO, Bluebridge Digital
Town: Fishers
Social: @santiagojara
Birthplace: Cali, Colombia
Years in Indiana: 6


8 Great Things to do the 2nd Weekend of October

Oct 09, 2014 by Hamilton County CVB

Headless_HorsemanTraditions are the theme of this fall weekend here in Hamilton County, Indiana. Annual events that visitors and locals alike love are back again. Get spooked at Headless Horseman, get your polka on, or attend a show during the Belfry Theatre's 50th anniversary season. Discover those ideas and more in this post, and find even more fall fun traditions on our calendar of events

1. The Headless Horseman will ride again beginning this Friday! Conner Prairie will transform into "Conner Scairie" for this annual October tradition. Explore this land of monsters, magic, and ghouls and take a hayride to catch a glimpse of the town's most famous inhabitant: the Headless Horseman. Need a break from the scariness? Hit up the Apple Store for caramel apples and cider slushies.  

2. Get those lederhosen out, it's time again for Oktoberfest at Carmel City Center this Friday. From 6-10 p.m. fest goers can enjoy entertainment from the Polkaboy band, a local legendary 14-piece band that plays everything from rock to, yes, polka. Grab a bite to eat and a German brew at one of City Center's restaurants while you're there! 

City Center3. Second Saturday Gallery Walk in the Carmel Arts & Design District returns again this Saturday. Make a glass pumpkin and check out the galleries to see what's new. Also stop by The Warehouse for the Art & Harmony event to hear various singer/songwriters take to the stage.  

4. Christmas shopping... already? Yes indeed, at the Christmas in October Craft Fair is this Saturday at Fishers High School. This annual show hosts over 150 juried crafters and benefits the funding for the Fishers Freedom Festival. Go ahead and get a jump-start on fining unique gifts for everyone on your list.   

5. There may be a fall chill in the air, but things at The Center for the Performing Arts are heating up! Grammy Award winning R&B singer Gladys Knight will perform this Friday and Saturday brings the international music sensation Samite to The Studio.    Day of the Dead NPA

6. Hop aboard the Indiana Transportation Museum Hamilton Harvest Train on weekends this October! A train will transport you directly to a pumpkin patch and fall fun area complete with fall treats and activities.   

7. Use every creative bone in your body to make one-of-a-kind spooky decorations for the season. Enter the Day of the Dead Calavera Contest this month at Nickel Plate Arts. Paint a skull to be entered into the competition, winners will be on display at the Dead of the Dead event on November 1. Or try your hand at painting pottery at Kiln Creations! They have several special ceramics available for Halloween.   Belfry Theater

8. 50th Anniversary season at the Belfry Theatre is here! This great local theatre group has stood the test of time. See why by attending the final performances of "The Desk Set" this weekend. This romantic comedy was originally produced at the Belfry for the 1983-1984 season and is now back for the 50th season.   

All-IN with Al Patterson

Oct 08, 2014 by Kate Burkhardt

When it comes to hidden gems, Al Patterson is an expert. As an Indiana "lifer" and director of Hamilton County Parks, Al was the perfect person to accept the challenge of sharing a photo of an Indiana hidden gem.

"I'd have to say White River is one of Hamilton County's hidden gems," Al said. "The photo I'm sharing is from a fishing trip with my son, Aaron." Al Patterson All IN- son on White River

The White River, beginning in Randolph County, is 312 miles long and has multiple access points in Hamilton County.

"Many do not realize the recreational value of river," Al said.

Other than in a boat on the river, Al enjoys spending time on land at Strawtown Koteewi, his favorite place in Hamilton County. Koteewi is the Native American word for "prairie," and represents Hamilton County's largest park. According to Al, the 750-acre park is essentially a small state park and has the best sunset in the county.

In August, Strawtown Koteewi opened a brand new archery range to the public, complete with fixed and variable targets for practice and competitive shooting.

"At Koteewi, I can bring a fishing pole or a bow and some arrows and escape from the hustle and bustle in short drive," said Al.

And Al's favorite part about living and working in Hamilton County?

"I love the variety," Al said. "You could see a performer at the Palladium one night, and watch a bluegrass band in Sheridan the next. People underestimate the variety of the communities, people, landscape and culture present in HamiltoAl Patterson Head Shotn County."

Name: Al Patterson
Job: Director, Hamilton County Parks and Recreation
Town: Westfield
Social: @hcparks
Birthplace: Indianapolis, IN
Years in Indiana: entire life

Show that you're All-IN and WIN! Share a photo of you and your family completing All-IN challenges on Twitter with the hashtag #Allin_HC or go to to enter!




Fall Haunts, Eats & Treats

Oct 07, 2014 by Caroline Mosey

It's fall in Hamilton County, and we're celebrating! The landscape is taking on breathtaking colors, the air is getting crisp and best of all, fall festivals and flavors are in full swing!

Unseen Press Ghost ToursDo you love spooky stories and scary sights? This year, Unseen Press is again offering their always-popular Ghost Walks. Wind your way through the most haunted parts of Hamilton County and get a chilling education on local legends and terrifying tales.

Conner Prairie transforms into Conner "Scairie" this time of year, and everyone's invited! Come take a haunted hayride and catch a glimpse of the Headless Horseman, Sleepy Hollow's most terrifying character. Dress up the little ones in their spookiest costumes for the Prairie Tykes Pumpkin Patch Parade, or enjoy Halloween-themed games and face-painting.

Cool Creek Park will be transformed into Haunted Trails to celebrate the frightful season. Wander the paths but beware of ghouls and monsters at each turn! For less frightening fun, visit the trick-or-treat trail for candy, hayrides and more. Haunted Trails - Image

If you're like me, the season isn't complete without experiencing yummy fall flavors and treats. Thankfully, we don't have to look far to get our fix! Picturesque apple orchards are plentiful in Hamilton County, so take your pick (pun totally intended).

The Pumpkin Harvest Festival at Stoneycreek Farm is the perfect place to get in the spirit. Wander through the you-pick pumpkin patch, go for a hayride or sample delicious fall treats from local vendors.

Stonycreek Pumpkin harvest festNothing says fall like a pumpkin pie. Visit Lisa's Pie Shop in Atlanta for flavorful pies of the season like apple, pecan, and more. If you're on-the-go, grab one of Lisa's famed Pie in a Jar treats for the road.

Stuckey Farm never disappoints when it comes to sampling the sweetest, juiciest apples of the season. Come to their Country Market and stock up on fresh-picked apples, jams and jellies and local fruits and vegetables. Savor cups of cider, take a walk through the orchard, or pick out your favorite pumpkin to take home and carve.

Spencer Farm is another great bet for finding just-right pumpkins, mums, apples and fall pies and baked goods.

So many fun and delicious options abound, so "pick" your favorite and enjoy the season to the fullest!


Conner Scairie voting



Oct 06, 2014 by Alan Hinds

Check out the new fall Stay and Play rates for great golf in Hamilton County. Super Saver golf packages with our gracious hotels and cordial pro shops begin in October. Plum Creek 2
Of special note is that when you are off the course, you are also in the middle of 8 Great Towns-enjoy the arts, area history, shopping, and dining. Add any one of these venues to your golf plans and you have what we call the Perfect Parlay.
All you have to do is choose a flag stick. You can't drive across our county without spotting one. Carmel's Plum Creek GC and Prairie View GC; Cicero's Bear Slide GC; Fisher's River Glen CC; Noblesville's Purgatory GC; Westfield's Woodwind GC and Indy's The Fort GC and Brickyard Crossing GC.
There is much excitement for need to pump the brakes on your anticipation for a great fall getaway. It will be the best drive you make this fall.

IHSAA Prairie View Golf Course
Need convincing?
How about the Top 10 Reasons to make reservations and tee times this autumn?
# 10. Who doesn't look good in a colorful, shoulder warming sweater vest. Go all the way with matching argyle socks. Who are out of state.

# 9. The captivating aroma of a faint swirl of smoke in the autumn air is exciting. And yes, that Perdomo robusto you just lit up counts. River Glen Country Club

# 8. The courses are all freshly painted this time of year...Willow yellow, Oak red, Maple orange, and hanging-on green.

# 7. You will get just as many birdies as you would if going fall duck hunting and you don't have to get up as early.

# 6. You can play with the Leaf Rule. Rule 16-a (di). No penalty if you can't find your ball. Get a free drop to the spot in the fairway where it should have rolled.

# 5. Super savings also extend to season closeouts in the pro shops. It often ends in golf couple's three favorite words... "Get it, Honey."

#4. Usually the courses are less crowded this time of year. You won't wear out your voice hollering Fore! as often.

# 3. Summer time lost balls are more plentiful to find. You get to trade in that Top Flight X-Out for a Titleist Pro V-1x discovered in the rough.

# 2. The firm, fast fairways in the Fall add 20 yards to your tee shot. Say, who needs a new Calloway Big Bertha Alpha driver?

# 1. And the number one reason for fall golf in Hamilton County. The Stay and Play fall discount rates makes you a super winner. The leaves aren't the only things falling.

8 Great Things to do the 1st Weekend of October 2014

Oct 02, 2014 by Hamilton County CVB

Prairie ViewFrom jousting to picking pumpkins to playing golf, this weekend in Hamilton County, Indiana has got a bit of everything! Fall festival season is in full swing, so get out and enjoy the crisp fall air and changing leaves. Read on for weekend getaway ideas and check our online calendar for even more fall fun. 

1. First Friday in Noblesville this week will bring lots of fall fun! Sample soups from local businesses at the First Friday soup cook-off, see the latest exhibit at Nickel Plate Arts, and even take a caboose ride around the square.  

2. See some very talented ladies take to the golf course this weekend. Friday and Saturday Prairie View Golf Club will host the 2014 IHSAA Girls Golf State Finals with top high school golfers from throughout the state. Inspired to get out your own clubs? Visit a Hamilton County course to play a round as the leaves change. 

Fishers Ren Faire new


3. Come ye lords and ladies to ye olde Fishers Renaissance Faire! This fun festival leads guests back in time to the Golden Age of Queen Elizabeth I. The Saturday and Sunday schedule is packed with everything from jousting to live music. Huzzah!  Potter’s Bridge Fall Festival - Image

4. The Grand Junction Derby is racing into downtown Westfield this Saturday. Homemade gravity-powered derby cars will battle it out in bracketed heats to crown a winner. Everyone is welcome to enjoy the after-race festivities including live music, food, and more. 

5. One of the most beautiful spots in Hamilton County to catch the leaves changing is at Potter's Bridge in Noblesville. Visit the county's only remaining covered bridge for the annual Potter's Bridge Fall Festival this Saturday for a variety of arts and crafts booths and food in addition to the beautiful leaves!  PumpkinTrain 149

6. Pick a pumpkin! Time to find the perfect pumpkin for that jack-o-lantern. Ride the Hamilton Harvest Train to a pumpkin patch or visit Russell Farms, Spencer Farm, or Stonycreek Farm for a traditional hayride to the patch.  

7. The fall fun has only just begun at Conner Prairie! This weekend brings the Dance! Lenape Indian Traditions event where you can experience music and more from the Lenape tribe, an iPhone photo class where you can capture fall on the prairie, plus a series of workshops to learn traditional crafts. Don't forget to visit the Apple Store too for fall treats!

8. Want to try something new in Hamilton County?  Whether you live here or like to visit, you can participate in our All-IN challenge in conjunction with Indiana Humanities. People from all over the state have participated to complete a scorecard of 16 challenges in 8 categories. Learn more about the challenges and how to enter to win prizes for completing them HERE.  

All-IN with Kurtis Moss

Oct 01, 2014 by Kate Burkhardt


Kurtis Moss ALL IN Blog

Where would you choose to volunteer with a goal of investing in the lives of youth in the community? A good question to ask may include "where do teenagers spend large amounts of their time?" The YMCA may come to mind, or clubs like the Boy and Girl Scouts of America, 4H and many notable others. But why not consider the organizations that house kids and teens all day, every day, for nine months of the year?

When people hear the word "organization," many do not include high schools in the mix of nonprofits and charitable organizations. But for Hamilton County VIP Kurtis Moss, Covenant Christian High School in Speedway is an organization where he can invest in the future of America: kids and teens.

"My wife, Carrie, and I believe in the importance of the next generation, so we use our time and resources to help out at CCHS where ever we can," the Launch Fishers executive director said. "We enjoy the opportunity to help the kids develop goals and plans for their futures."

The Moss's use shared skills and experience in event planning to plan, organize and run recruitment events where prospective students can visit the school, play games and meet other students. Carrie and Kurtis also chaperone trips for international students to experience the fullness US culture during their time staying with host families. On a smaller scale, Kurtis volunteers taking tickets at sporting and holiday events.

"Teens need positive role models," said Kurtis. "High school can be a tough time of transition, so I love be part of an organization that values those relationships."

When Kurtis is not volunteering or manning the entrepreneurial floor at Launch Fishers, he enjoys being outdoors and says the Monon Trail is his favorite place in Hamilton County. Kurtis Moss Head Shot 85

Name: Kurtis Moss
Job: Executive director, Launch Fishers
Town: Fishers
Social: @KM12288
Birthplace: St. Louis, MO
Years in Indiana: 22

Show that you're All-IN and WIN! Share a photo of you and your family completing All-IN challenges on Twitter with the hashtag #Allin_HC or go to to enter!

Hamilton County Tourism has partnered with the Indiana Humanities to help encourage the Hamilton County community to complete activities to help connect them to each other and to make Indiana even better. People from all over the state have participated to complete a scorecard of 16 challenges in 8 categories. Follow seven VIPs in the community as they complete challenges and complete your own to win prize packs! Those who complete challenges can register to win either by tweeting about their experiences with the hashtag #Allin_HC or entering at




Sports New & Old

Sep 30, 2014 by Sarah Billman

Purdue Softball at GPWith fall comes football, right? Right! (Go Colts!) But here in Hamilton County, fall sports also include softball, golf, soccer, and more. From new tournaments to old traditions, Hamilton County loves their sports and sports love Hamilton County!

First, let's start with the new. Did you hear about the inaugural College GameDay Softball Tournament that took place at Grand Park - The Sports Campus at Westfield a couple weeks ago? Thirteen collegiate softball teams from Indiana and Ohio, including the crown jewels, Purdue and Notre Dame, went head-to-head all Sunday long. With over 2,500 fans coming from all over the region, this first year tournament was quite the success, and Grand Park, Bullpen Tournaments, and fans are already looking forward to next year. Prairie View Golf Course Blog

Next, have you been able to catch any of Indiana High School Athletic Association's (IHSAA) 42nd Girls Golf State Tournament? If not, you still have time! Last weekend, sectionals began, and this weekend regionals will be taking place at 5 locations throughout the state of Indiana. Then, on October 3rd and 4th, the State Finals will be held at Hamilton County's own Prairie View Golf Course. The girls will be starting early, about 8:30am each day, and admission is $12 per person. Seeing this caliber of talent in person is something you can't afford to miss!


Also, did you know: The IHSAA Girls and Boys Golf State Championships will be held at Prairie View for the next five years, starting this year and concluding in 2019? Talk about tradition - mark your calendars now!

Halloween Classic 2014Lastly, you can't forget about another tradition, Indy Premier Soccer Club's 23rd Annual Boys and Girls Halloween Classic. The girls will be playing October 18 and 19, and the boys will be playing October 25 and 26. Play will be at both Fishers' Cyntheanne Park and Hamilton Southeastern High School. Touted one of the Midwest's finest tournaments, teams from Indiana and the region - as far as Tennessee, Wisconsin and Missouri - come to compete as well as celebrate the soccer season. Last year, over 200 teams participated! Admission is free. However, attendees and fans are encouraged to bring non-perishable food items, which will be donated to a local food pantry, to the annual Coaches Games.


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