/ On The Road
On The Road — By Jenni Ingersoll on March 28, 2010 at 6:46 am
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Back Home Again, NCAA Final Four Welcomes Butler Bulldogs

NCAA Hall of Champions

When Indianapolis was chosen to be the host city for the 2010 NCAA Men’s Final Four tournament, Horizon League, Butler University was thrilled to be the host university.  Never in any one’s wildest dreams could we imagine that Butler would not only be hosting, but  playing in the tournament as well.

Nestled in a downtown residential neighborhood, known as the Butler-Tarkington area, Butler University(map) is within walking distance of the Indiana Governor’s Mansion. With its large stately homes, this area is one of my favorite neighborhoods to soak up the history and charm.

A  liberal arts school, Butler was founded in 1855 and the lovely campus is famous for two buildings, Clowes Memorial Hall (map), home to arts programs, including the recent Broadway Across America’s, The 101 Dalmatians Musical.

The second, and probably one of the most famous buildings in the state of Indiana, is Hinkle Field House (map). Home court for the Final Four bound Butler Bulldogs, this gymnasium has hosted countless state high school basketball tournaments, welcomed numerous collegiate games and was even the set of the classic Cinderella basketball movie,  Hoosiers. What a timely tale, again.

A previous post listed the exciting events that the NCAA, Butler University and Indiana Sports Corporation have planned to entertain the visiting fans of the Final Four teams.  A second post listed a full menu of dining  and celebratory establishments catering to sports fans.

I would like to map out a few additional Indianapolis area attractions that sports-minded guests might want to check out  while you are in town, April 2-5:

Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Indianapolis Motor Speedway Hall of Fame Museum, (map) – also steeped in history and about to celebrate 100 years, the track which opened in 1909 and has hosted the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing” since 1911. As such it has been listed on the National Register of Historical Places.

The IMS  is the world’s largest spectator facility, so large that it could fit the Roman Coliseum, Vatican City, Wimbledon Campus, Rose Bowl, Yankee Stadium and Churchill Downs all inside the 2 1/2 mile oval.

The Museum is devoted to automobiles and auto racing with approximately 75 vehicles on display at all times. Sign up for a grounds tour and take a bus lap on the famed course.  Museum hours are daily from 9:00 – 5:00.

National Art Museum of Sport (map)- located on the IUPUI campus, this museum holds the nation’s largest assembled collection of sport related art. From Native American games to dog sledding to boxing, over 40 different sports are represented in 900 pieces of art.

Works feature famous athletes in action and in portraits by artists including  Winslow Homer and LeRoy Neiman.  Some works are even by famous athletes, like Muhammad Ali. The museum is open to the public and is free of charge.

NCAA Hall of Champions (map) – this interactive museum offers displays for each of the 23 sanctioned NCAA sports, virtual  game areas to try your hand at several sports, even an enclosed tennis area where you can observe balls being served at 100 mph, this gave me a whole new respect for tennis players!  Located within the grounds of White River State Park, the NCAA headquarters will be in the thick of all the Final Four action.

What an amazing and exciting basketball season and tournament this has been.  I am sure the Final Four will be nothing less.  Congratulations to all the teams, and especially, our hometown heroes, Butler!

Related places:
  1. A
    Butler University
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  2. B
    Clowes Memorial Hall of Butler University
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  3. C
    Hinkle Fieldhouse
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  4. D
    Indianapolis Motor Speedway
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  5. E
    National Art Museum of Sports
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  6. F
    NCAA Hall of Champions
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