Eclectic & Bohemian Scene – Star City Coffee & Ale House

Nestled in Downtown Lafayette is a unique and dynamic café known as Star City Coffee & Ale House. Star City is a combination of part coffee shop and part ale house which creates the perfect environment to savor the simple things in life. Whether you are a fan of a delicious pour over or prefer a draft beer, Star City Coffee & Ale House has something for everyone.

An eclectic, bohemian, and artistic scene is what you should expect when walking into this local Lafayette jewel. It is a relaxing and casual place to catch up with friends or catch up on some work while being fueled by Star City’s delicious Dirty Chai (my personal favorite). And do not hesitate to chat with the baristas as you will quickly find that they are knowledgeable on all things coffee and ale. These baristas love to help new guests with their drink selection or even pick the best cupcake flavor. So, when you become a regular at Star City you will find that the expert baristas remember who you are as they truly care for the people who walk in their door. (And occasionally some of those guests who come to Star City are on four legs!)

A few of the menu highlights include items such as the Star City Turkey Panini that includes turkey, mozzarella, fresh tomatoes, basil, cream cheese and chives or for a breakfast option I recommend the open-faced Mediterranean bagel with feta, honey, tomato, and basil. Both are classic options for some sustenance, but if you are looking for a sweeter pick-me-up to drink I recommend the Lavender Vanilla Latte or the Nutella Latte. And for customers who are 21 and over, the Upland-Two of Tarts Tropical Gose has an unmistakable flavor of mango and passion fruit with a crisp, dry finish.

Whether you are a local to Lafayette-West Lafayette or planning your next weekend coffee crawl/beer tasting, then Star City Coffee & Ale House is an absolute must. For more information about this location and other restaurants in our area, visit HomeOfPurdue.com.

Jaclyn, Purdue University Student and VLWL Intern, shares this blog.

Pepperoni Perfection at Arni’s

Stomachs grumbling, cold winds hitting our faces and tired bodies from sledding. What was the next activity on the agenda? This was the question the Visitor Center’s staff had. A unanimous agreement was made…we should dine at Arni’s Restaurant for lunch! (Arni’s originated in the Lafayette area over fifty years ago and has expanded to multiple parts of Indiana.)

The Visit Lafayette-West Lafayette staff arrived with warm welcomes from the Arni’s staff. We were seated right away in a comfortable and cozy booth. The hospitable waitress introduced herself and explained the fresh-made foods on the menu and the famous Arni’s pizza.

Pondering for a minute, we had to try the pepperoni pizza and side salads. The Arni’s Junior Salad is a unique rendition of a traditional salad. This delicious dish includes tender ham and turkey chunks topped with blends of cheese, sliced radishes, green onions and croutons. With any salad comes flavorsome dressings! Arni’s homemade french dressing is one of the available choices as well as their famous bleu cheese, herb vinaigrette and classic ranch.

The staff is fabulous!

After deciding pizza and salads as a main meal, we had to try some munchie appetizers. A plethora of choices, the loaded cheese fries and chili nachos supreme were the final decision. Who doesn’t want crispy fries, gooey cheese, bacon and green onions all in one! The chili, tomatoes and jalapenos had a savory taste and put a trance on anyone who tried them.

Nachos galore!

After full bellies of appetizers, salads and homemade pepperoni pizza (which you must order…the pepperoni is cut up very small and has the perfect blend of spice! One of best pepperoni’s around!), it was time to end the impeccable lunch break. The polite staff and efficient service brands Arni’s Restaurant as a preferable place to eat.

Fly heaven!

Onward to more winter fun as we embark on an afternoon of more sledding in Lafayette-West Lafayette! For more information about this restaurant and our fabulous sledding hills, visit HomeOfPurdue.com.

Abby, VLWL Intern and Purdue University Student, shares this blog.

Get Lost in Stories at Main Street Books

Bring your kids to pick out a fun children’s book full of adventure!

Traveling through Lafayette, and forgot to bring along that new book you were planning to read? No problem! Main Street Books in historic downtown Lafayette has something any book lover might need.

Home to a variety of fiction genres including anything from fantasy to mystery to a large young adult section, Main Street Books has a story for anyone looking to read a good book. They also have a small selection of nonfiction books that include many biographies. At reasonable and fair prices, Main Street Books is the perfect place to visit when you are hoping to grow your library while also supporting local business.

Books Galore!

By shopping at this bookstore, you also contribute to the life of historic downtown Lafayette. An area of town with lots of growth supported by local, small businesses. When you buy a book from Main Street Books you can do so knowing your purchase truly matters.

Before you decide on which book you are going to purchase, take a seat on one of the two reading chairs and read a few pages. This cozy shop with lots of character is the perfect place to spend time getting lost in a story. Next time you are making a purchase for yourself or your book loving friend, check out Main Street Books.

For more information about this bookstore and others in our area, visit HomeOfPurdue.com. Jaclyn, VLWL Intern, shares this blog.

Best Donut Shops in Greater Lafayette

Who says doughnuts can’t be both breakfast and dessert? West Lafayette and Lafayette have five great locations where you can satisfy your morning hunger or your sweet tooth with some delicious doughnuts. So grab your friends, your children or your grandchildren and make an outing out of visiting these amazing shops.

Mary Lou Donuts

Open since 1961, Mary Lou’s is one of the statement shops of Lafayette, and it is home to some of the best doughnuts in the area. It prides itself on freshness and quality, and inside its shop is a center of community for townsfolk and students alike.

The specialty doughnuts include the massive apple fritters and blueberry doughnuts, but they have more than 80 flavor combinations. The company offers many other services, including delivery and drive-thru, and it sports the only doughnut truck in the area. You can find the truck’s location by visiting the Mary Lou Donut Truck Locations Facebook page.

Mary Lou Donuts picture

The blueberry glazed doughnut I ate at Mary Lou Donuts.

I came for breakfast, and I tried the blueberry glazed cake doughnut, which has a true blueberry flavor with hints of cinnamon. It’s not too dense, but it’s definitely filling.

Address: 1830 S. 4th St., Lafayette, IN 47905

Hours: Monday through Saturday – 5 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday – closed

O’Rears Pastry Shop

This shop features specialty pastries including cupcakes, cookies and danishes, but they also serve fresh doughnuts. O’Rears most famous doughnuts include the fried cinnamon crunch doughnuts and the fried apple fritters.

Other doughnuts include the tiger tails (vanilla and chocolate twists), Bavarian cremes, French cremes and raspberry cremes. On weekends, the shop makes special lemon and chocolate-filled doughnuts. Most of their doughnuts are yeast, but they do offer a small selection of cake doughnuts.

O'Rear's Pastry Shop donut

The fried cinnamon crunch doughnut I ate at O’Rear’s Pastry Shop.

I came for breakfast and tried the fried cinnamon crunch doughnut, which was delicious! The cinnamon-roll-flavored yeast doughnut was topped with caramel icing, crushed nuts and butterscotch chips, and the flavors together made me want to melt in their goodness.

Address: 321 N. 9th St., Lafayette, IN 47904

Check out O’Rears famous neon sign! It’s shaped like a pastry chef’s hat.

Hours: Monday – 6 a.m. to 12 p.m., Tuesday through Thursday – 6 a.m. to 4 p.m., Friday – 6 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday – 6 a.m. to 3 p.m., Sunday – 7 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Corlew Donut Company

Open only in the morning, this doughnut shop features a variety of cake and yeast doughnuts you can grab on-the-go because it’s not a sit-down restaurant. However, you can purchase coffee or bottled beverages from a refrigerated cooler in the shop to pair with your doughnut.

Corlew Donut Co.’s specialty doughnuts include the apple fritters and the tiger tails. Not to be outdone by the other flavors, their special cinnamon doughnuts having a variety of toppings including caramel icing, chopped nuts with chocolate icing, and cinnamon sugar.

Corlew Donut Company donut

The tiger tail doughnut I ate at Corlew Donut Company.

I tried the tiger tail for breakfast, which was ginormous; it’s the equivalent of eating two doughnuts. I ate it all in one sitting! Chocolate and vanilla flavors are intertwined in this yeast doughnut, and it is topped with glaze frosting.

Address: 1803 E. 350 S., Lafayette, IN 47909

Hours: Monday – closed, Tuesday through Sunday – 5 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Hammer Donuts

Hammer Donuts, like Corlew’s, is a place to grab a doughnut or two on-the-go because it’s not a sit-down shop or cafe. Tucked in the back of the Discount Den convenience store in the Chauncey Hill Mall near Purdue’s campus, a floor-to-ceiling glass case holds cake and yeast doughnuts made fresh for the day.

There are a variety of flavors to try, including jelly-filled, Bavarian creme-filled, cherry, red velvet and more. Their specialties, however, are the apple fritters as well as the cereal-topped doughnuts featuring Lucky Charms, Fruity Pebbles, or Captain Crunch. No other shop in the area features these cereal creations; they definitely conquer breakfast and dessert.

Hammer Donuts donut

The strawberry glazed doughnut I ate at Hammer Donuts.

I came for a snack and tried the glazed strawberry cake doughnut, which was small but also dense and thick, and it was the perfect combination to make me feel satisfied.

Address: 135 S. Chauncey Avenue #1J, West Lafayette, IN 47906

Hours: Monday through Wednesday – 8:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., Thursday through Saturday – 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., Sunday – 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Greyhouse Coffee & Supply Co.

Greyhouse is a modern-yet-rustic coffee shop bustling with people near Purdue’s campus. After a huge remodel, the company had its grand reopening in March, 2018. With its new look, it has a new menu that now includes doughnuts.

Many of the flavors cater to the season, such as the pumpkin spice glazed cake doughnut and the strawberry lemonade yeast doughnut, but Greyhouse does offer classic flavors like the glazed vanilla bean yeast doughnut, the classic old-fashioned cake doughnut and the double chocolate old-fashioned cake doughnut.

Greyhouse donut

The pumpkin spice glazed doughnut I ate at Greyhouse.

I tried the pumpkin spice glazed doughnut as another snack, and it was a spongy, dense cake that I enjoyed while sitting in the shop.

Address: 100 Northwestern Ave., West Lafayette, IN 47906

Hours: Everyday – 7 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.

If you’re in the area, check out some of these amazing doughnut shops and find your favorite one for breakfast or just a sweet treat excursion.

For more information about Lafayette-West Lafayette food and shops, visit us at HomeOfPurdue.com

This blog was wrriten by Purdue University Student, Kayla Groen

Top 5 Sledding Tips & Winter Fun at Home of Purdue

Did you know you can cross country ski at Prophetstown State Park? Bring your ski’s!

Looking for a fun winter activity for the whole family? We recommend sledding! Here at the Visitors Center we spent the day testing out the best sledding hills in the area and brainstormed 5 tips for you to have a terrific experience sledding.

  1. Bundle up!
    • This might seem like common sense, but it gets really cold when you get out in the snow. So, before you head out with your sled in hand make sure you have all the essentials: scarf, hat, gloves, coat, multiple pairs of socks, and hand-warmers. You might break a sweat climbing up and down the big hills, but it is vital to dress warmly.

      Kids having fun at Murdock Park!

  2. Map out which hills to try in advance.
    • Our next piece of advice is to plan your day in advance. We began at Prophetstown State Park with some cross country skiing and a snowball fight. Then we stopped for a delicious lunch at Arni’s at Market Square before our final stop at Murdock Park. With so many options here in Lafayette/West Lafayette, make the most of you day by choosing which hills you want to go to ahead of time.
  3. Have no fear.
    • Now some of these hills can be decidedly intimidating (have you seen Slater Hill?!) but to have the most thrilling experience you must simply be brave and go for it at full speed! We wiped out plenty of times, but those moments are now fantastic memories of a fun day together.

      We had so much fun at Murdock Park!

  4. Go home when you can’t feel your feet anymore.
    • Once it gets to a certain point, it will be time to pack up and head home. Safety first around here and that means we want you to be able to feel your fingers and toes! Head home once you are too cold. Don’t worry you can come back again!
  5. Drink some hot cocoa to warm back up.
    • Finally, (and this is my favorite piece of advice) drink some hot cocoa! I have so many memories of spending the day building snowmen and having snowball fights, and then coming inside where it’s warm and cozy. My mom would always have a huge cup of hot chocolate with marshmallows for my sister and me. This is the perfect way to end a perfect day of sledding.

Fun at Prophetstown State Park!

We hope these tips are helpful for you the next time you adventure out into the cold to go sledding. We would love to see pictures and hear about your own advice, so tag us on facebook or instagram @homeofpurdue. Happy sledding!

Jaclyn, VLWL Intern and Purdue University Student, shares this blog.

Purdue Nightlife: Best Bars

Purdue Nightlife: Pick the Best Bar for Your Night out on the West Lafayette Town!

Purdue has quite a few bars near campus, each offering its own unique atmosphere and array of various drinks and food. Depending on what type of night you are looking to have, whether it be a laid back conversation with some friends while drinking a beer or a night full of dancing and rave music, Purdue has many places on campus that are able to provide you with whatever kind of night out you are looking for.

Harry’s: Harry’s Chocolate Shop has been around since 1919 when Harry J. Marack opened its doors to the public, thus making it the oldest bar at Purdue. Initially it was a soda fountain until Harry’s obtained a liquor license later in the 1920s. With so much history it’s no wonder Harry’s has established itself as a staple near Purdue’s campus. Alumni also tend to favor Harry’s as their hang out spot when they return to campus to catch up with friends. The atmosphere at Harry’s is very relaxed and not as chaotic as most people might imagine a college bar to be (until around 9 p.m. when the college students begin their late night festivities.) There are lots of tables to sit down at and enjoy a drink, burger, as well as engage in a great conversation with your friends.

wall outside of Harry's Chocolate Shop

The famous wall outside of Harry’s where many students, alumni, and visitors take photos in front of. #Harry’sChocolateShop #Purdue #Photogenicwall

Harry’s has an array of specialty drinks, as well as some delicious meals to choose from. One of the most popular drinks among students is the “Grasshopper.” This sweet cocktail has a mint flavor and is made with green creme de menthe that gives the drink its signature color. A “John Daly” is another highly requested mixed drink at Harry’s. It is a combination of iced tea, lemonade, and vodka.

grasshopper cocktail from Harry's Chocolate Shop

The “grasshopper” is a popular cocktail ordered by many students. This delightful drink tastes like you’re drinking melted mint chip ice cream. What could be better than that?! #grasshopper #mintchip #icecreamcocktail #Harry’sChocolateShop

Ordering food at Harry’s is also a must. Their quesadillas, chicken wings, and burgers are sensational and loved around campus. The prices are also very reasonable, with the average meal price staying at about $7.50. When making a visit to Harry’s be sure to plan ahead and arrive before 8 p.m. or you might have trouble finding an open table.

Location: 329 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN

Hours: Monday-Saturday: 11 a.m. – 3a.m. , Sunday: 12 p.m. – 3 a.m.

Inside of Harry's Chocolate Shop

A glimpse at the vintage aesthetic inside Harry’s Chocolate Shop. The popular bar near Purdue’s campus has an old time look and feel, as well as many stylish signs. #Vintage #Harry’sChocolateShop #StylishAesthetic

Brothers: If you’re looking for a step up from Harry’s in terms of a more exuberant atmosphere, then Brothers is the best option. There are still plenty of tables to hang out with friends, but the addition of pop music and space to dance around, if you choose to do so, creates the typical college-esque bar experience. Brothers is known for its great deals throughout the week on both drinks and food. With $1 double wells on Mondays and 25 cent wings every Wednesday, it’s hard to resist making a weekly visit to Brothers. The deals are also great for students who are looking to have a night out but need to stick to a budget.

Location: 306 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN

Hours: Monday-Saturday: 5 p.m. – 3 a.m. , Sunday: 7 p.m. – 3 a.m.

Brothers bar sign

Brothers bar provides a great atmosphere for students and visitors to enjoy a drink and a riveting conversation with peers. #BrothersBar #Purdue #placetobe

Brothers bar view from counter

Don’t worry about missing the big game while enjoying a drink at Brothers. The bar is stocked with many TVs and lots of your favorite beer. #BrothersBar #BigGame #BeerFan

Where Else: Where else would you rather be on a night out at Purdue? The answer is in the question. Where Else! This bar has been near Purdue’s campus since 1997 and is one of the most energetic bars on campus. With a live DJ set most nights and a sizable dance floor, Where Else is the perfect place to bust a move while dancing the night away with your friends.

where else entrance door

Looking for a place to enjoy a drink and get your groove on? How about Where Else! The dance floor and drink deals are waiting for you. #WhereElse #getyourgrooveon #drinkdeals

Where Else also offers 50 cent beers every Monday night, which is the cheapest drink offer on campus and very popular among students. Don’t skip out on deals like this and make a visit to Where Else next Monday night.

Location: 135 S. Chauncey Ave, West Lafayette, IN

Hours: Wednesday-Saturday: 12 p.m. – 3 a.m. , Sunday-Tuesday: Closed

Where Else bar main floor

Students enjoying a night out at Where Else, while dancing with friends and relishing their drinks. #WhereElse #dancethenightaway #PurdueNightlife

Neon Cactus: Neon Cactus, called “the Cactus” for short, is the closest thing Purdue has to a club. With a ginormous lit up dance floor and constant upbeat rave music playing, it’s no surprise the Neon Cactus is one of the most popular bars on campus. Every Thursday the Cactus hosts “Thirsty Thursday,” which offers students the chance to get a 32oz mixed drink for $3.50. You can pick from many different options but the fan favorite is the “Long Island Iced Tea.” This deal is extremely popular and more often than not creates a line out the door, which can take hours to get inside. Make sure to show up no later than 10 p.m. on a Thursday night if you want to make it inside first.

neon cactus front sign

One of the best places to party in West Lafayette is the Neon Cactus. With their amazing drink deals on “Thirsty Thursday” and fabulous dance music, it is hard to resist. #NeonCactus #ThirstyThursday #dancemusic

Neon Cactus main dance floor

The Neon Cactus packed on a “Thirsty Thursday.” Everyone is having a great time dancing and savoring their $3.50 cocktails! #NeonCactus #cheapdrinks #bustamove

Neon Cactus is also known for the Piano Man, who performs classic hits on his piano in a separate room of the bar. Students sit down and sing along while they take a break from dancing around for hours. If you’re ever free on a Thursday night and in the area, then you definitely need to make a stop at the Neon Cactus.

Location: 360 Brown Street, Unit 15, West Lafayette, IN

Hours: Thursday-Saturday: 8 p.m. – 3 a.m. , Sunday-Wednesday: Closed

piano bar at neon cactus

All that dancing calls for a break and there is no better place to go than to the Piano Bar to hear the Piano Man play some classic tunes. #NeonCactus #PianoBar #singusasong

For more information to plan your perfect night out check out HomeofPurdue.com to find additional articles on these bars and other nightlife options.

Shauna McAulay, Purdue University Student, shares this blog.

The Knickerbocker Saloon: An Old School Bar in a New Town

The Knickerbocker Bar West Lafayette

As I sat at a heavy walnut bar surrounded by mirrors that illuminated the impressive liquor display, it was hard for me not to feel like a character out of a Fitzgerald novel. The Knickerbocker Saloon, located at 113 N. Fifth St. in downtown Lafayette, is Indiana’s oldest bar, with an equally impressive legacy. Though the Knickerbocker Saloon has hundreds of tiny details that are worth exploring, listed below are the five most notable.

A prohibition liquor plaque displayed at the Knickerbocker Saloon in Lafayette, Indiana

Calling my History Buffs

Receiving its liquor license in 1835, the Knickerbocker Saloon is the oldest bar in Indiana! Throughout the bar’s history, it has been visited by such notables as Neil Armstrong, Ulysses S. Grant and John Purdue. Featured on the walls by the bathroom are two plaques; one commemorating the Knickerbocker’s 175th anniversary in 2010, and the other displays a certificate for the prohibition of liquor in 1922!

A Zombie Dust beer at the Knickerbocker Saloon in Lafayette, Indiana.

99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall

Though they don’t serve 99 different types of beers, the general manager, Deborah Walstra, informed me that they carry 80 to 84 brands of beer at a given time, rotating with the seasons. Sorry to disappoint tap lovers, but they only carry bottled beers, which was a quirky surprise. I tried a Zombie Dust beer, which is a powerfully hopped pale ale that had a great, refreshing flavor and a unique package design. Walstra also mentioned that the Knickerbocker hosts a free beer school on the first and third Monday of every month, in which different breweries offer information and samplings of their products (no sign-up necessary). To support local businesses, the Knickerbocker also carries beer from local breweries in Lafayette, making sure everyone can sample the best that Indiana has to offer.

A caramel apple martini at the Knickerbocker Saloon in Lafayette, Indiana.

Martinis Galore

My interview at the Knickerbocker took place on a Wednesday, which just so happens to be martini night (coincidence- I think not). From the classic martini to an equally impressive “flirtini,” the Knickerbocker offers any type of martini you can dream of (and even some that would never cross your mind). I sampled a caramel apple martini, which was made with a smooth caramel vodka base and tasted like I was biting into an taffy apple: needless to say, I was in love. Walstra said that she encourages her staff to experiment with different martini flavors, creating a new concoction almost every night (truly an impressive feat).

Entertainment room at the Knickerbocker Saloon in Lafayette, Indiana.

Not the Taj Mahal, but….

With a history dating from 1835, the Knickerbocker was bound to have some awesome architectural features. What struck me first was the beautiful bar. Constructed from walnut with a cherry veneer, it exudes a 1920s feel. I also loved the high, tin ceilings, which added to the “old money” ambiance. Because of the stunning architectural features, the Knickerbocker hosts many business and wedding receptions.

Live entertainment offered at the Knickerbocker Saloon.

Live Entertainment

Perhaps the most attractive feature of the Knickerbocker Saloon is the live entertainment. On Monday the bar features karaoke. Every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, live piano music entertains. Every Friday a unique artist is featured from People’s Live (a local brewery that supports regional musicians), and on Saturday live music is offered! In the extended green room, a stage is set up to make accommodating artists and large groups a breeze.

Open every day from 4 p.m. to 3 a.m., the Knickerbocker is sure to dazzle you with its impressive history and diverse drink menu. For more information about the bar visit its Facebook or call (765) 423-2234. For more information about local bars in Lafayette/West Lafayette be sure to check out the Home of Purdue Blog.

Sarah Staatz, Purdue University Student, shares this blog.

Beyond the Vine Wine Tour

The Visitor Information Specialists at the Visit Lafayette-West Lafayette Visitor’s Center were given the fun opportunity to go on a Beyond the Vine Wine Tour. They truly enjoyed their experience and want to share three reasons why you should consider taking the tour! Read their review:

We arrived on a cold Sunday afternoon prepared to experience the Beyond the Vine Wine Tour. It was a day full of friendship and fine wines, and we would highly recommend this to anyone who enjoys tasting wine, relaxation, and unique experiences. Below are the top three reasons why you should consider booking a Beyond the Vine Wine Tour.

1. Stress-Free and Relaxing

The first reason is because of how stress-free and relaxing your time on the bus will be because of the preparation of Jill Smit. She takes time to consider every detail of your day and has each detail planned and prepared perfectly. Simply book your reservation and let Jill take care of the rest! From the timeline of the day to paying for everything in advance, all you have to do is show up (and bring your ID!). Jill arrives on time and with the bus stocked full of a cooler, wine themed decor, and a playlist of your choice. Guests are welcome to bring their own food on board the bus or you have the option of a delicious boxed lunch from Great Harvest Bread Co. Of course, with Jill driving the bus, you are able to taste and enjoy all the wine you wish without worrying about driving home. All these factors combined create a relaxing, stress-free experience.

Jill, our Wine Tour Extradorniaire!

2. Great Wine and Great People

Another awesome perk of the Beyond the Vine Wine Tour is knowing that the wineries you are visiting have been tested and approved by many tasters before you. Our visit began with a tasting at Whyte Horse Winery in Monticello, IN. Here we tasted five different wines ranging from sweet to dry and three of their specialty drinks including an apple cider slushy. You must visit at Christmas time when the winery is decorated beautifully with Christmas trees and lights. Next on our tour was Carpenter Creek Cellars. It is located in Remington, IN and is one of the best wineries around. With world-class award-winning wines, this stop is a must. You will be treated to a tour of the facilities where you can see where all the wine is produced and corked, and taste every single wine listed on the menu. And don’t forget to say hi to the winery dog, Port! Our final stop was Hooker Corner Winery where we had 5 different tastings as well as mulled wine an

d a mulled wine slushy. This is the perfect spot to enjoy a glass of wine while viewing the quiet countryside. These are only three of the several options of wineries in the area, and the Beyond the Vine Wine Tour also offers options to visit local breweries. One thing all three wineries had in common were people passionate about wine. These winemakers love to talk about wine and share their wealth of knowledge with guests entering their doors. You will definitely feel that on the Beyond the Vine Wine Tour.

Having fun on the bus!

3. Unique and Fun

The final reason to experience the Beyond the Vine Wine Tour is because it is fun! This is a unique experience to safely support locally owned Indiana wineries and have fun doing it. You can trust that each stop has something unique and different to offer and expand your understanding of Indiana wines. It is the perfect way to celebrate a bachelorette party, a fun date night, or even a mother-daughter day out. Even if for no other reason than because you like to drink wine, the Beyond the Vine Wine Tour is for you!

So, if you are looking for something fun to do and like supporting local business, then check out the Beyond the Vine Wine Tours. We had a fantastic experience and recommend it to any visitor or local in the area. You will board the bus as a guest and leave as a friend.

Jaclyn, VLWL Visitor Information Specialist, shares this blog. For more information about this wine bus and other fun attractions in our area, visit HomeOfPurdue.com.

Amazing Shops Around Lafayette-West Lafayette

Outside of our Downtown districts, there are so many amazing places to shop in the Greater Lafayette area! Remember to #shoplocal to support the business owners in our community. Here are just a few of the places you need to check out when doing your shopping this holiday season:

Gretel’s Fine Gifts

Stop into Gretel’s for something you won’t find anywhere else! This is a delightful gift store with a bent for the eccentric, quirky, and creative. Gretel’s offers something for everyone from handmade jewelry to beautiful ceramic pottery to holiday decorations. When shoppers walk in, they are eclipsed in bright colors and a whirlwind of fun gift ideas. Explore their website to see all of the amazing offerings. There are great gifts and holiday decor available there – you won’t want to miss all of the cutest snowmen and holiday-scene lanterns.

Interior Objects

Interior Objects is a boutique filled to the brim with good ole’ Hoosier hospitality! You can be sure that as soon as you enter, someone will greet you with a smile and direct you towards whatever interests you. There is a wide variety of objects just waiting to take their place in your, or a loved one’s, home. It is a specialty shop specializing in beautiful homewares, lifestyle items and one of kind decorations. Continue your hunt for holiday gifts here at Interior Objects! Jewelry for the fashionistas in your life, kitchenware for your favorite chef, blankets for lounging during holiday breaks – all this and more! And, sadly Interior Objects will be closing in the coming months due to retirement so make sure not to miss out on your last opportunity here!

Hot House Market

Hot House Market is a vintage shop located right here in Lafayette! If you struggle every year to buy presents for someone in your life that is cool and hip – this is the place for you. Hot House Market is full of vintage and ethically sourced products ranging from candles and jewelry to clothes for everyone. This shop is a favorite of one of our Visitor Information Specialists here at Visit Lafayette-West Lafayette. You can always be sure to find the cutest pieces there. They also have a fantastic selection of vinyl records! Their second location in the Keystone Fashion Mall may be familiar to some. Gifts for your loved ones are abound here, but you probably won’t be able to leave without something for yourself as well…

Leaping Leopard Antiques

You’ll be leaping for joy when you walk into Leaping Leopard Antiques! It is located in the Valley Plaza in Lafayette. This is a huge space with rows of antique goods. Primitives, mid-century modern, junky to funky, vintage collectibles, antique toys, repurposed furniture and lighting, artwork, vintage clothing, pottery, tools, cast iron, books, coins, and jewelry. Any antique hunter will be thrilled to visit Leaping Leopard Antiques! You can find unique home goods and decor, which make a perfect present. Browsing the shop is an exciting experience and you can be sure to find something to add to or begin a collection here.

Samantha, VLWL Intern, shares this blog.  For more information about these stores and others in our area, visit HomeOfPurdue.com.

Fabulously Fun Stocking Stuffer Ideas

Call me crazy, but I love the cold weather. The chilly weather means the holidays are coming, and one of my favorite parts of the holidays is shopping for little stocking stuffers.

Thankfully, Lafayette-West Lafayette is home to several local shops full of unique stocking stuffers for every type of person.

For the Fashionista

IMG_3799
Just a few of the bold socks you can pick up from Juniper.

Juniper is a great place to shop for those who’d love a little fashion in their stocking. Located in the Wabash Landing Shopping Center, the boutique offers trendy pieces for an affordable price. I recommend checking out their patterned scrunchies. Scrunchies are super popular this year, and Juniper’s are covered in pretty patterns and colors. I also really love their fun socks. They have a ton of options to choose from, so you are sure to find a pair that matches everyone’s personality. What’s the best part? Both of these items will fit perfectly into your budget and a trendsetter’s stocking.

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Scrunchies at Juniper.
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Von’s has a wide selection of comic books!

For the Bookworm

Von’s Book Shop is so much more than a book shop. Their shelves are full of small gifts like beaded necklaces, mix-and-match stick incense, fun-shaped sunglasses, and tie dye headbands.  They also have a huge comic book section. You could check out the first edition of “Stranger Things” or something more classic like “Wonder Woman.” Comic books are great stocking stuffers for those who love superheroes (and villains), action-packed graphics, and adventure.

Main Street Books is another local shop that offers a wide selection of titles, both new and used, to choose from. Their selection is mainly made up of fiction, but they do have a small selection of non-fiction as well. The staff is friendly and always willing to help pick out that perfect book.

For the Sweet Tooth

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Assortment of chocolate at Kathy’s Kandies.

Kathy’s Kandies is locally owned and full of fresh, homemade sweets located right on Main Street. Chocolate-covered pretzels, chocolate-covered cherries, truffles, peanut butter cups, and Oreo bark are just a few of the chocolate confections available at Kathy’s Kandies. Kathy’s Kandies also offers gummies, licorice, and gourmet popcorn that comes in a variety of different flavors. I recommend buying a different kind of popcorn for each stocking. This gives you the perfect excuse to snag a little popcorn from everyone on Christmas morning.

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Just a few popcorn options at Kathy’s Kandies.

McCord Candies is another candy store located on Main Street. Each year, McCord Candies produces handmade candy canes to sell during the holiday season (they also offer candy cane tours for visitors to see the candy cane making process). Since the candy canes don’t contain any preservatives, their texture is unique and completely different than the candy canes you would buy at a grocery store.

For the Purdue Fanatic

These decals can be used on several surfaces.

Follett’s Purdue Bookstore is generally regarded as a textbook store, but it is also great place to shop for Purdue apparel and accessories. They have a number of small gifts ranging from coasters to Purdue golf balls. Follett’s also carries decals for moms, dads, alumni, and current students. They are both movable and reusable, so you won’t have to worry about sticking it on straight in one try.

The Purdue Team Store has several categories to choose from like tailgate accessories, car accessories, and kitchenware. You can find bottle opener keychains, wine glasses, and license plate frames with the Purdue logo. There are also two shopping locations, Purdue Memorial Union and Ross-Ade Stadium, to choose from.

The Purdue Team Store in the Union.

No matter who you are shopping for, the local shops have you covered. For more information on these local shops or other shops in the Lafayette-West Lafayette area, visit HomeofPurdue.com

This blog was written by Kirsten Rhine, Purdue University Student.