Five Free Spring Things to Do in West Lafayette!

There’s no better price than FREE! So many attractions and activities to check out this spring won’t cost you a dime. Check out a few selections in West Lafayette below!

1. Cumberland Park

ColumSlide1

Cumberland Park contains a 1/2 mile footpath, two lighted Arni Cohen Memorial softball fields, two lighted basketball courts and the Pony League Baseball field! The Cumberland Park would be a great place to visit with your family or friends this spring!

2. John T. Myers Pedestrian Bridge 

Pedestrian Bridge 4 Chapman

 You can enjoy a beautiful spring day along the Wabash at the John T. Myers Pedestrian Bridge! Take a lunch, relax and watch the people as they walk across the bridge.

3. Bug Bowl 

Bug Bowl 2

The annual Bug Bowl is the largest known insect event of its kind. Nearly 30,000 people attend this event each year! Kids, families, and bug lovers can all find fun activities to enjoy such as the cricket spitting contest and cockroach racing!

4. Public Art Trail

John Wooden

Explore all of the creative and beautiful art scattered around West Lafayette! Check out our website and brochure on the Public Art Trail – it will give you a guide too all of the things you can spot around Purdue’s campus and beyond!

5. Springfest at Purdue 

Springfest Napassorn Punyasuk

Join the fun at Purdue’s Spring Fest! This free event is a great opportunity for students of all ages to learn about animals, art, astronomy, and much more in two full days of hands-on activities. This year it will be: April 14 & 15, 2018!

This blog was shared by Samantha Martin, a Purdue student Visitor Information Specialist intern at Visit Lafayette-West Lafayette.

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What Lies Beyond Purdue Campus Part 2

Thanks for joining on my adventure beyond Purdue! On Monday, I shared our morning and early afternoon tour through Lafayette-West Lafayette.  But the day was stocked full of more fun through the afternoon. Check this out!

Embracing the arts, Downtown Lafayette!

Embracing the arts, Downtown Lafayette!

So many great farmers market items - Weathered Plow!

So many great farmers market items – Weathered Plow!

Weathered Plow Veggies, fruit, seasonings, bulk food, and deli sandwiches – all this and more at this local Farmers Market. Everything looked so fresh and organic! We walked through the aisles of the Weathered Plow wanting to buy everything! My coworker even purchased a Sweet Potato Succulent plant to decorate her home.

Artists' Own

Artists’ Own

Downtown Lafayette There is so much to see and do in Downtown Lafayette. We have shops, restaurants, art galleries, everything to keep Lafayette residents and visitors entertained. There is art and jewelry to view and purchase at places like Artists’ Own and LE Originals. Enjoy candy and a soda from one of the oldest operating soda fountains in the Midwest at McCord Candies. Sample and purchase bottles of wine at Cellar 422. Stock up on your crafting supplies at River Knits! We loved strolling down the main streets of the downtown districts and taking in all that our city offers. I could go on and on about all of the things located downtown Lafayette.

Haan Mansion The Haan Mansion Museum of Indiana Art was one of our favorite sites of the day! The mansion has a rich history and was originally built for the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair. Today it is filled with important and rare art from Indiana artists such as T.C. Steele, as well as gorgeous antique furniture. Climb up the staircases draped in classic red carpet, and visit the uniquely furnished and decorated bedrooms. We had a wonderful time

Haan Mansion

Haan Mansion

viewing all of the art on the walls of the mansion and the pottery/ceramics. Campus life often lacks artistic activities and exhibitions, and I think that a visit here would definitely fill that need!

Columbian Park & Zoo Free to the public, this zoo is a great spot for students low on cash. It opened in 1908 and today it houses prairie dogs, otters, bald eagles, emus, wallabies, llamas, goats, and many other animals. Visitors and students can come here to take a break from work and school life and to see the great variety of exhibits housed at the Columbian Park Zoo. This will also give them an opportunity to learn about and contribute to conservation efforts. We had a great time on this warm day seeing all of the animals, even a wallaby with a baby still in her pouch!

Can you guess this animal?

Can you guess this animal?

Igloo Frozen Custard We finished the day off by enjoying frozen custard from the Igloo. The first Igloo opened in 1932 in Lafayette. They’ve been serving the community for decades and they sure know what they’re doing! It was refreshing and cooling after a long day in the sun.

I never knew how much the Lafayette area had to offer! Now that I have experienced just a sample of what happens in our community outside of campus, I know that I will have a richer and more fulfilling experience while studying here at Purdue. I hope by sharing the things I saw on this fun and exciting day, that I will encourage everyone to get off campus and see all that the Greater Lafayette area has to offer. Samantha, Purdue University Student, shares this blog.

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Weekend Update: Indiana Fiddlers’ Gathering & Haan Mansion Picnic on the Lawn

Fiddlers 2014.1Weekend Update! Looking for a fun Indiana weekend getaway? Or do you live in this area and are looking for entertainment close by? Check out the endless possibilities for fun events happening this upcoming weekend in Lafayette-West Lafayette, Indiana.

This weekend, June 23-25, do not miss the 45th Annual Indiana Fiddlers’ Gathering, located on the grounds of the historical Tippecanoe Battlefield. This event is a celebration of traditional music, food, crafts and continuous activities.  Music lovers will have the chance to clap, stomp and enjoy the sounds of old-time, bluegrass, swing jazz fiddle, string band, Celtic and ethnic music.  This is an acoustic music festival that has featured some of the most famous musicians of our time! Performers in 2017 include the following: The Fretless, Bing Futch, Ken & Brad Kolodner, Charm City Junction, Cathy Barton & Dave Para, Spencer & Rains, Roger Netherton & Friends, Kountry Kernals, Bahler’s “Golden Age” Band, Tamara Loewentha and Mark Lyons.

Scott Greeson

Scott Greeson

Enjoy more music and entertainment this Saturday and Sunday at Haan Mansion during “Picnic on the Lawn” and “Theater in the Garden”. Bring a picnic and lawn chairs and come to the front lawn of the Haan Museum to listen to the music of Scott Greeson while the Civic Youth Theatre prepares to present their production of “Macbeth” by Shakespeare. The play is being presented in the Theater Garden behind the Museum following Scott’s musical performance.  

Theater in the Garden

Theater in the Garden

For more information about these events and other special “happenings” in Lafayette-West Lafayette, check out our website at www.HomeOfPurdue.com.

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Weekend Update: Bing Davis Exhibit and Winter Workshop, Walking Sticks

Weekend Update! Looking for a fun Indiana weekend getaway? Or do you live in this area and are looking for entertainment close by? Check out the endless possibilities for fun events happening this upcoming weekend in Lafayette-West Lafayette, Indiana.

Do not miss the last weekend to enjoy the Haan Mansion Museum of Art’s latest exhibit: On the Shoulders of Ancestors: the Art Of Willis Bing Davis. Willis “Bing” Davis grew up in a neighborhood where there was a sense of community, where everyone knew who you were, and where great role models made a positive impact on the lives of its residents. While embracing his African-American heritage and culture, Davis creates thought provoking artwork that interweaves native patterns and fabrics and gives a new voice to found objects. Ceramic Ancestral Spirit Vases, masks, paintings and many other ceramic pieces showcase the talent and versatility of this prolific artist. Through his art, he inspires the viewer to explore their human potential and greatness.

IMG_4227Enjoy a hike through Prophetstown State Park during their Winter Workshop, Walking Sticks on Saturday, March 18. A walking stick can aid you in hiking because it takes pressure off your knees and back, and it can help you keep balance on uneven ground.  Walking sticks can be works of art too. The state park will have different methods of design for all ages (only older participants will be allowed to carve with a knife.)

For more information about these events and other special “happenings” in Lafayette-West Lafayette, check out our website at www.HomeOfPurdue.com

Weekend Update: Summer Potters Market & Haan Mansion Tours

Arts Galore! Lafayette-West Lafayette Weekend Update! Looking for a fun Indiana weekend getaway? Or do you live in this area and are looking for entertainment close by? Check out the endless possibilities for fun events happening this upcoming weekend in or near Lafayette-West Lafayette, Indiana.

Celebrate art while browsing and shopping at the Summer Potters Market on Saturday, August 20 at the YWCA. Explore handmade pottery by local clay artists. Art pieces include functional, sculptural, traditional, contemporary, stoneware, porcelain, earthenware, and more! Have fun!

Haan Mansion

Haan Mansion

Art and history come alive this weekend during the Haan Mansion Museum of Indiana Tours on August 20 and 21. The Haan Museum is housed in an impressive Classical Revival mansion that served as the Connecticut Building at the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair, with many hand carved components taken from a 1760 mansion from Norwich, CT. The Museum features massive museum-quality American antiques and an exceptional collection of paintings by important Indiana artists, including some of the finest works by TC Steele and other Hoosier Group members. Important items from the Fair include three Weller vases ranging from 53″ to 81″, the largest of which won the Gold Medal for the Arts at the Fair. Limited tour size allows guests to visit each room and hear about the mansion and its contents.

For more information about these events and other special “happenings” in Lafayette-West Lafayette, check out our website at www.HomeOfPurdue.com.

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Lafayette-West Lafayette Weekend Update: Round the Fountain Art Fair & Lafayette Citizens Band Memorial Day Concert

Round the Fountain

Round the Fountain

Memorial Day Weekend Update! Looking for a fun Indiana weekend getaway? Or do you live in this area and are looking for entertainment close by? Check out the endless possibilities for fun events happening this upcoming weekend in Lafayette-West Lafayette, Indiana.

Art, art, art! Did you know Lafayette-West Lafayette prides our self on being an arts community! We have local artists who specialize in glass, watercolor, sculpture, pottery, jewelry and much more.  This Saturday, May 28, explore a gallery of color and expression at the Round the Fountain Art Fair! This fair actually takes places around our historic courthouse. It is a day to bring the family to discover our majestic downtown and explore the arts like never before!

Lafayette Citizens Band 2007.6jpgBring the family for an evening of lovely music on Monday, May 30, for the Lafayette Citizens Band Memorial Day Concert.  Expert conductor William D. Kisinger will lead the band in wonderful music played by local musicians.  Bring your lawn chair, find your spot around Riehle Plaza, and enjoy this night of music. Also, don’t forget your dancing shoes, if the mood strikes and you want to dance!

For more information about these events and other special “happenings” in Lafayette-West Lafayette, check out our website at www.HomeOfPurdue.com

Weekend Update: Tour Haan Mansion & Wolf Park Howl Night

Ada Shulz Washday at Haan Mansion

Ada Shulz Washday at Haan Mansion

Weekend Update! Looking for a fun Indiana weekend getaway? Or do you live in this area and are looking for entertainment close by? Check out the endless possibilities for fun events happening this upcoming weekend in or near Lafayette-West Lafayette, Indiana.

On March 19 and 20 tour Haan Mansion Museum of Indiana Art! The Haan Museum is housed in an impressive Classical Revival mansion that served as the Connecticut Building at the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair, with many hand carved components taken from a 1760 mansion from Norwich, CT. The Museum features massive museum-quality American antiques and an exceptional collection of paintings by important Indiana artists, including some of the finest works by TC Steele and other Hoosier Group members. Important items from the Fair include three Weller vases ranging from 53″ to 81″, the largest of which won the Gold Medal for the Arts at the Fair.

On Saturday evening, visit Wolf Park, and see the animals in a whole new light during “Howl Nights”. As the night falls and the air cools, the wolves get frisky. Guests will have an opportunity to hear a more in-depth discussion of the wolf’s “trademark” behavior — the howl. They will have front row seats to a sing-along as Wolf Park’s expert wolf handlers enter the enclosure and interact with the main pack of wolves. Guests will be encouraged several times during the performance to howl, and will be able to see and hear the wolves return the call.

Kanti Running on the Pond

Kanti Running on the Pond

For more information about these events and other special “happenings” in Lafayette-West Lafayette, check out our website at www.HomeOfPurdue.com.

Weekend Update: The Dixie Swim Club & Indiana Ceramics Celebration

Vase by Paul Soldner at at Indiana Ceramics Celebration

Vase by Paul Soldner at at Indiana Ceramics Celebration

Weekend Update! Looking for a fun Indiana weekend getaway? Or do you live in this area and are looking for entertainment close by? Check out the endless possibilities for fun events happening this upcoming weekend in Lafayette-West Lafayette, Indiana.

Enjoy a night of laughter and camaraderie at the Civic Theatre of Greater Lafayette this Friday, October 31 and Saturday, November 1 during the play, The Dixie Swim Club. Five Southern women, whose friendships began many years ago on their college swim team, set aside a long weekend every August to recharge those relationships. Free from husbands, kids and jobs, they meet at the same beach cottage on North Carolina’s Outer Banks to catch up, laugh and meddle in each other’s lives. The Dixie Swim Club focuses on four of those weekends and spans a period of thirty-three years. Visitors will laugh at this hilarious and touching comedy about friendships that last forever.

It’s the event we have been waiting for all fall season; the Indiana Ceramics Celebration at the Haan Mansion Museum of Indiana Art on Saturday, November 1 and Sunday, November 2. An amazing array of ceramics will be displayed, including about 50 pieces over 20 inches and several more over 4 feet tall. There’s a huge variety of ceramic forms, including tables, a rocking chair, a saddle, figural work, buildings, and much more. You’ll find teapots, platters, and assorted vessels in a wide array of styles. Featured artists include Marvin Bartel, Bing Davis, George Debikey, Lenny Dowhie, Scott Frankenberger, David Gamble, Bill Griffith, Dick Hay, Bill Kremer, Dick Lehman, Les Miley and many other nationally known artists with Indiana connections. Glass works by Lisa Pelo, Sharon Owens and Kokomo Opalescent Glass are also part of the exhibition. Deceased potters represented in the collection include Laura Fry, Karl Martz, The Overbeck sisters, Richard Peeler, Paul Soldner, Richard Tuck and others. Works by important Japanese potters (some of whom are Japanese Living National Treasures) who influenced the work of current clay artists will also be shown.

For more information about these events and other special “happenings” in Lafayette-West Lafayette, check out our website at www.HomeOfPurdue.com.

Weekend Update: Gallery Walk & Tour Haan Mansion

Artists' Own

Artists’ Own

It’s an Artsy Weekend in Lafayette-West Lafayette! Looking for a fun Indiana weekend getaway? Or do you live in this area and are looking for entertainment close by? Check out the endless possibilities for fun events happening this upcoming weekend in Lafayette-West Lafayette, Indiana.

Do not miss the last Gallery Walk of the season this Friday, September 19! In historic downtown Lafayette, the local arts community collaborates with downtown businesses to highlight the arts and culture in the region. A Friday evening may be filled with a night out for dinner at your favorite restaurant, a leisurely stroll from one Gallery Walk location to the next, where artwork, music, and occasional complimentary beverages or hors d’oeuvres may be sampled. Special exhibitions taking place are the following: Tippecanoe Arts Federation Gallery Reception for A Quilted Narration of Gaelic Folklore and Beyond, Quilted Art by Leanne McGiveron and Heather Vanderkleed, I Arrange My World, Prints, Painting, Mixed Media by Lisa Parish Parker & Ahead of the Curve, Mixed Media and Wood by Anita and Bill Krug. Artisits’ Own Reception for Landscapes in Paint and Pixels By: Glenn Chang and Sandy Daniel exhibit.

Saturday, September 20 and Sunday, 21 mark the last guided tours of the year at the Haan Mansion Museum of Indiana Art. Visit each room with Bob and Ellie Haan to share stories about the mansion and its contents. You’ll find massive, museum-quality antiques and major paintings by historic Indiana artists including TC Steele, Wm Forsythe, George Winter, EK Williams, Ada Shulz and many others. Also get a sneak peek at part of the ceramics collection. Tours are at 10 am and 1:30 pm on Saturday and 1:30 pm on Sunday. (October tours that focus on ceramics and November Holiday tours will be walk-through tours with docents in each room.)

For more information about these events and other special “happenings” in Lafayette-West Lafayette, check out our website at www.HomeOfPurdue.com.

Haan Mansion Museum of Indiana Art offers History, Art & More

Davis Our House this oneHappening Now! Right now, the talk around town is about the area’s newest attraction, Haan Mansion Museum of Indiana Art, that is a mixture of art and history. This attraction draws everyone from art aficionados to history buffs in one setting. The pure splendor of this mansion, that is located directly south of downtown Lafayette has visitors acclaiming its beauty with awe and excitement.

This past spring I visited Haan Mansion for the first time for a special event/tour. I truthfully had no idea where I was going but I had it on my schedule and Google mapped how to get there. Upon driving up the street where it is located, I was shocked at its massive size and brilliance. It was a rainy, crummy day to be out, but it shone bright in its brilliance. The long walkway up to the massive front door allowed me time to take in the beautiful neighborhood and really get a great look at the mansion.

Haan Mansion board meeting 1Upon walking in, the owners, Ellie and Bob Haan, greeted me along with the other tour visitors. The first thing I did was look up at the beautiful chandelier and then straight ahead into the Great Hall, which is the vocal point of the mansion. This is where a huge dining room table sits with another ginormous chandelier hung overhead and a beautiful staircase and an open air circular second floor landing. Many rooms veer off of this room. Everywhere one looks there are paintings, antique furniture and pottery. The mansion has three above ground floors and a full basement totaling 15,000 square feet. It also includes seven fireplaces and 4 1/2 baths. We toured the first two floors and there wasn’t one empty space!

Vase is by Paul Soldner

Vase is by Paul Soldner

All the walls are filed with art! Over the years the Haan’s have amassed a huge collection of paintings by the most important artists that painted in Indiana. Specializing in major oils that best represent the work of an artist, over 100 artists are represented in the collection. As with any museum, not all of the paintings can be hung at the same time, and the most important works are selected for display. There are over 100 paintings hung at any one time. All of the paintings in the mansion are painted by Indiana artists, except the western art by Martin Grelle that the Haan’s fell in love with on a trip to Phoenix.

History buffs, check this out! The Mansion was originally the State of Connecticut building at the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair. Connecticut chose architect Edward T. Hapgood to design the building. The state wanted their pavilion to represent a country gentleman’s home, and the architect patterned the building after the 1820 Sigourney Mansion in Hartford. Many components were taken from the 1760 Hubbard-Slater Mansion in Norwich including the front entryway, various interior columns, and door capitals. The mansion was designed and built to be moved after the World’s Fair. It was dismantled and moved to Lafayette, Indiana, immediately after the Fair by Mr. and Mrs.William Potter and became their personal residence, until it was sold in later years.

One of the unique features of this museum is the Haan family still lives here. Bob and Ellie have opened it for special weekends and events and/or group tours to share it with those lucky enough to visit! As we toured the space one question was how do they keep it so clean, especially with tours and living in it.  There is not a speck of dust in the whole place, which is amazing! They shared they have a housekeeper who comes every week or two to dust. Impressive!

Holiday Tour! Perfect time to bring the children to check out all the toys!

Holiday Tour! Perfect time to bring the children to check out all the toys!

This fall the Haan Mansion is featuring some specialty tours. Check out their website, http://haanmuseum.org, to learn about their Ceramics Celebration and Holiday Tours. Also, unbeknownst to many, there is a highly rated mountain bike trail on the grounds. Will discoveries ever cease!!

Whether you are looking for delicious dining, interesting attractions and shops, enticing events or home away from home lodging—a getaway to Lafayette-West Lafayette, Indiana, is sure to satisfy. For more information about this museum and others in the area, visit our website at www.HomeOfPurdue.com