Monday, November 24, 2014

Eagle Creek Park Closed Thanksgiving Weekend

Yes, we need to reduce the number of deer in Marion County. But, really: do we need to schedule the slaughter for a holiday weekend? When we'd like to relax a bit and show off one of Indy's jewels to visiting family and friends?

Those of us planning a stroll (or a jog or a bike ride) through Eagle Creek Park Friday through Sunday (28-30 November) are out of luck.

The Department of Parks and Recreation will close the park to the public for the initial deer reduction phases of its Deer Management Program. All park sponsored activities and programs are cancelled for that weekend.

Yes: the deer (with no natural predators in Indiana) are causing deforestation, loss of biodiversity, a loss of species and a general change in the nature of the forest. But should the shooting take place on what otherwise would be a busy weekend for the park?

A second phase of the initial deer reduction will occur through professional services provided by the United States Department of Agriculture at later dates which have not yet been determined. The dates of the second deer reduction activities will be provided to the public once they are set.

Deer carcases will be processed off-site and the meat will be offered to Wounded Warriors Outdoors, local shelters and food banks.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Indy's International Festival

If you think Indy is monochromatic, you haven't been to the International Festival.

It features exhibits from the 50+ ethnic groups represented in Central Indiana as they gather to share their rich cultural histories and traditions with their neighbors.

Highlights of the festival include authentic foods from 20+ ethnic vendors; continuous ethnic music and dance by local and national performing groups; Culture Booths hosted by volunteers in traditional dress where you can connect with your own ethnic heritage; artisans demonstrating traditional crafts; a Naturalization Ceremony (welcome our newest American citizens) and an International Marketplace offering gifts from around the world.

The festival is the signature event of the Nationalities Council of Indiana, showcasing Indiana’s ethnic diversity, celebrating our unique ethnic traditions, and encouraging cultural exchange.

The next one is November 21 through 23, 2014, in the West Pavilion at the Indiana State Fairgrounds, 1202 East 38th Street, Indianapolis.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Our Own Philip Gulley Nails It

"The merit of a position can be gauged by the temperament of its supporters, and these days the NRA reminds me of the folks who packed the courtroom of the Scopes monkey trial, fighting to preserve a worldview no thoughtful person espoused. This worship of guns grows more ridiculous, more difficult to sustain, and they know it, hence their theatrics, their parading through Home Depot and Target, rifles slung over shoulders. Defending themselves, they say. From what, from whom? I have whiled away many an hour at Home Depots and Targets and never once come under attack."

"I’ve come to believe “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms” no longer promotes our life, liberty and pursuit of happiness, but daily threatens them. How free are we when more people are shot and killed each year in America than populate the towns in which many of us live? How free are we when a backpack that unfolds into a bulletproof covering is a must-have item for schoolchildren?"

The Quaker pastor from Indy's western suburbs wrote his essay for Salon. Read it all here.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Extra Hour: More Booze

IBJ.com reports that alcohol sales in the Hoosier state will be legal for an extra hour on Sunday morning along with the end of daylight saving time.

IBJ notes that the Indiana Alcohol and Tobacco Commission allows sales to continue until 3 a.m. November 2 -- although this Indianapolis Observer could find no press release or other information on the commission's site to back up that claim.

In any case, you do remember that it's "spring forward, fall back", right? Adjust your clocks back to 1 a.m. November 2 when daylight saving time ends at 2 a.m. And get ready to drive home in the dark.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Indiana Orphans the Toll Road

"A state official says no effort will be made to reclaim the Indiana Toll Road from its private operator, which filed for bankruptcy protection in late Sepember," reports IBJ.com.

This Indianapolis Observer is speechless.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Ballard Won't Run Again

According to Advance Indiana, "Mayor Greg Ballard is expected to announce shortly that he won't be seeking a third term as Indianapolis mayor next year."

Anyone surprised?

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Only the Strong Persist

The Indiana State Museum will host a major retrospective exhibition of 40 paintings and drawings, a sculpture and several pieces of hand-painted china by Hoosier artist William J. Forsyth (1854-1935), from November 8, 2014, through March 29, 2015. The works selected for the show capture the essence of Forsyth, an award-winning artist known for his volatile personality and artistic versatility.

The exhibition William J. Forsyth: Only the Strong Persist is drawn from the Indiana State Museum's permanent fine art collection and several private collectors, including Susan Forsyth Selby Sklar of San Marcos, Calif., granddaughter of Forsyth and noted art collector. This exhibit will accompany William J. Forsyth: The Life and Work of an Indiana Artist (Indiana University Press, 2014), a comprehensive book about Forsyth that will be available for purchase in the museum's Indiana Store.

"The attention to Forsyth, an important artist and teacher in Indiana who was an Indianapolis eastside Irvington resident, is long overdue. He was part of the original Hoosier Group artists, one of five Indiana painters who garnered nation acclaim for their work." said Mark Ruschman, curator of fine art. "Many of the works in the exhibition borrowed from private collections will be seen by the public for the first time. Exhibition co-curator Rachel Berenson Perry has assembled an impressive selection of works highlighting the artist's tremendous talents and impressive career."

The opening reception will take place from 6:30 to 8 p0.m. November 6. Reception ticket prices are $25 (members) and $35 (general) each and will be available through Eventbrite and the museum's ticket office.

The exhibition is included with museum admission.

(Image from Fosyth painting courtesy of Indiana State Museum)