Spring into Central Indiana

Put a little spring in your step with these fun regional events
Amy Lynch

Feel like a kid again
The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis welcomes visitors all year, but several new exhibits provide even more incentive to stop in and explore. “Sue,” a T-Rex from Chicago’s Field Museum, pays a visit from March 6 through July 25, wowing observers with her size and strength. On March 20, DC Super Heroes™: Discover Your Superpowers opens with interactive features and activities across the Hall of Justice, Aquaman’s Docks, Gotham City and S.T.A.R. Labs. And a new experiential Play Ball! area commemorates the hometown Indianapolis Indians and gives guests a chance to test their own skills.

The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, 3000 N. Meridian St., 317-334-4000, childrensmuseum.org

How sweet it is
Go west to Hendricks County’s McCloud Nature Park for the 11th annual Maple Syrup Days, where visitors can help gather sap and sample the finished product. It’s the perfect time of year to tap the on-site sugar maple trees; once the sap is collected, it’s reduced in an evaporator to create the delicious maple syrup we all know and love. Bonus — you even can purchase some to take home and enjoy on pancakes. Free to attend, the 2021 Maple Syrup dates are March 6 and March 13 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

McCloud Nature Park, 8518 Hughes Rd., North Salem; 765-676-5437; hendrickscountyparks.org

Stop and smell the flowers
Spring is bursting into bloom at Newfields, where the gardens and the IMA Galleries come back to life each season with orchids, daffodils, hyacinths, pansies, tulips, peonies and other floral species. From March 16 through May 9, the attraction’s green spaces present an evolving display of gorgeous flowers, trees and plants. Access is included with general admission (free for Newfields members); advanced ticket purchases are required to comply with COVID capacity guidelines.

Newfields, 4000 Michigan Rd., Indianapolis; 317-923-1331, discovernewfields.org

Hoop it up
Catch the spirit of March Madness when the NCAA Men’s Basketball tournament tips off with Selection Sunday on March 15. This year’s competition may look different due to Covid-19 restrictions, with 68 participating teams sequestered in a bubble format for the entire event, but the energy and excitement remain the same. Games will be played at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Hinkle Fieldhouse and the Indiana Farmers Coliseum in Indianapolis; Assembly Hall on the Indiana University campus in Bloomington; and Purdue University’s Mackey Arena, with Final Four games set for April 3 and 5 at Lucas Oil Stadium. Decisions on fan attendance to be determined.

Multiple venues, ncaa.com/news/basketball-men/article/2021-march-madness-schedule

Make a toast to the taxman
They say two things in life are certain. Taxman Brewing Company’s Death and Taxes Day celebrates both with a lively afternoon of beer and wine tastings, food truck cuisine and live music. This year’s party takes place Saturday, April 17 from noon to 4 p.m. with more than 40 Indiana breweries taking part to showcase their finest wares. As host, Taxman plans to release a new product especially for the event — a Belgian-style stout called “Evasion” aged with Indonesian vanilla beans and rested in Kentucky whiskey barrels.

Taxman Brewing Company, 13 S. Baldwin St., Bargersville; 317-458-0210, festivalcountryindiana.com/death-and-taxes-day

Amy Lynch is an Indianapolis-based freelance writer and editor.