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Indianapolis Attractions and Things to See

Indianapolis is the capital of Indiana, the state's biggest city, and the second biggest in the Midwest, behind Chicago, with an economy that has traditionally been the center of industry and government in the state, with manufacturing; and today is a center for finance, health care and education, with tourism a growing part of the economy. The city has many sporting events and conventions that draw visitors here from across the nation, with the great Indianapolis 500 probably, the biggest event. Other significant events include the Brickyard 400, as well as the Men's and Women's basketball tournaments. It had originally been home to the Lenape and Miami tribes, however, they would be removed by the 1820s, when the state capital would be located here, the old one being situated in Corydon since it was formed into a state. It is the closest capital that is geographically located in the center of the state, and founded along the White River since it could be used for transportation and the exact center of the state, but it had such a sandy bottom that trade wouldn't materialize.
The city prides itself on its rich cultural heritage that includes its six cultural districts, that have been revitalized during the last couple of decades and also includes the Cultural Trail, Indiana statehouse, Monument circle, War Memorial Plaza. The cultural trail is supposed to be completed this year, and is a world class urban bike and pedestrian path that links the city's five downtown cultural districts, entertainment facilities and neighborhoods, with bike racks, lights, benches and signage along the routes, with many bike rental shops in the area. The city is second only to Washington DC for the amount of monuments and these include the Landmark for Peace Memorial, the Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument, the USS Indianapolis Memorial, Indiana World War Memorial Plaza and the Medal of Honor Memorial. Other outstanding and exciting venues include the Scottish Rite Cathedral, the American Legion National Headquarters, President Benjamin Harrison House, the Crown Hill Cemetery, Obelisk Square, James Whitcomb Riley Museum home, Morris-Butler Home, Lockerbie Square, Madame Walker theater center, Cole-Noble District and the Indianapolis City Market.
The city hosted the Gen Con in 2003 that is the biggest role-playing game convention in North America, at the Indiana Convention Center, and as the center is enlarged, it is expected to welcome even more, since it has hosted events like the Star Wars Convention II and III that brought Star Wars fans from around the world, including George Lucas. It has also evolved into a music center, and hosts to the Percussive Arts Society, the American Pianists Association, Music for All and Indy's Official Musical Ambassadors. It is home to the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, Bands of America, a national organization for high school marching, concerts and jazz bands, and it has become the International headquarters of the Drums Corps International. Since 1982, it has been home to the Kiwanis International organization, and also houses the national headquarters for twenty-six sororities and fraternaties, that seem to congregate in the College Park area that encompassed the Pyramids, that are three pyramid shaped office buildings that belong to the 200 acre commercial development in College Park.
There are many festivals and events held here during the year, with just as many sports venues that have helped the city earn the nickname of the Amateur Sports Capital of the World and the Racing Capital of the World, with many national and athletic organizations calling it home as well. Indianapolis has almost 200 parks that sit on more than 10,000 acres, and its flagship is the Eagle Creek Park that is the biggest municipal park in the country, and ranks as one of the biggest urban parks in the country. The Indianapolis Zoo opened in 1988, and is the biggest in the state, just west of downtown in the White River State Park, with 360 species of animals and well known for its excellent dolphin exhibit.
The city has almost half a dozen theaters and performing arts venues, with close to two dozen museums and galleries, with another six places of interest. The city has the Indianapolis International Airport is located nearby and is the biggest in the state, with a newer airport in the works that is supposed to be the biggest development initiative in the city's history and will cost about $1.1 billion. It has numerous interstate highways, highways, state roads, public transportation, Amtrak, people mover light rail service, taxis and buses.