Monday, September 8, 2014

A Luncheon with Hapsburg Royalty

A luncheon reception in honor of the Archduke and Archduchess of Austria, Markus Salvator and Hildegarde von Habsburg-Lothringen, will be held from 12:15 to 2 p.m. 19 September 2014 in the first floor auditorium ballroom of the Athenaeum, 401 East Michigan Street, Indianapolis, Indiana.

It's sponsored by the Indiana German Heritage Society.

Tickets at $20 per person are available online; registration deadline is 15 September 2014.

The royal pair are visiting Indiana to help commemorate the 175th birthday of Ferdinand. The archduke is the great-great-great-nephew of Emperor Ferdinand I of Austria, for whom the town was named.

Archduke Markus and his wife reside at the Kaiservilla in Bad Ischl, Upper Austria, the former summer residence of Emperor Franz Joseph I and Empress Elisabeth of Austria.

They will arrive in Ferdinand 20 September, to attend the Ferdinand Folk Festival. Joining them will be two relatives who now live in the states, Renate Princess Windisch-Graetz and Count Ferdinand Graf von Seefried auf Buttenheim.

Friday, August 29, 2014

About the Sudden Need for Security Gates at the Governor's Mansion...

Mike Pence "is getting a closer look as a potential 2016 presidential candidate, and there’s a growing sense among GOP operatives that he has a leg up over other contenders when it comes to winning the favor of the political network fronted by the billionaire conservative megadonors Charles and David Koch.

Read the speculation here.

"A former talk show host who led a crusade to defund Planned Parenthood in the House, Pence has worked to spotlight the fiscal issues that animate the Kochs’ political giving."

Oh, my!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Indiana's Cocktail Contest

The Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites is "shaking things up" with an invitation to submit recipes for the Making Indiana's Cocktail Contest, a competition designed to select the Hoosier state's 2015 unofficial cocktail.

The competition comes at a time when the museum is preparing to host the national traveling exhibit "American Spirits: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition" and its grand opening fundraiser "Indiana Spirits".

All Indiana bartenders are encouraged to submit a recipe by the September 12 deadline. One of three required spirit brands must be included for the contest: American Harvest Vodka, Knob Creek or Jack Daniels (because the event is co-sponsored by Republic National Distributing Company of Imdiana). Bartenders are also encouraged to connect their recipe to Indiana's rich history and culture.

Guests attending "Indiana Spirits" October 3 will sample the top three recipes. Following the opening event and continuing through January 1, 2015, Hoosiers will be encouraged to visit the three bars represented by the finalists and partake in public voting to name Indiana's 2015 cocktail.

Rules for Recipe:
• No homemade ingredients (i.e., aged vermouth/bitters, spirit infusions, etc.)
• Easily available ingredients (i.e., sodas, tonics, juices, bitters, simple syrups, etc.)
• No more than five ingredients per cocktail, including one of the required spirit brands
• Submit recipes by September 12 to the Indiana State Museum or your RNDC sales representative
• If recipe is selected as a finalist, attendance is required at the Indiana State Museum's Indiana Spirits event October 3 to showcase cocktail

• Creativity
• Practicality
• Representation of Indiana
• Taste (presentation, flavor, balance, use of brands and ingredients)

• The top 10 recipes will be judged and selected by a committee of local beverage professionals, bartenders and community representatives
• The top three recipes will be represented and showcased at "Indiana Spirits"
• October 4 through January 1, 2015, people's choice online votes will be tabulated culminating with the selection of Indiana's 2015 cocktail

Top three prizes
• Basket of spirits
• two Indianapolis Colts tickets
• Showcase at "Indiana Spirits" October 3

Top prize
• Voted Indiana's 2015 cocktail
• Featured in The Beverage Journal
• VIP tour of the Jim Beam American Stillhouse, Clermont, Kentucky or Jack Daniels Distillery, Lynchburg, Tennessee. (hotel and travel included)

(Photo by Stephanie Syjuco)

Thursday, August 21, 2014

International Market Day

It's got an unfortunate name -- Manthan International Market -- but the idea is a good one.

Indy presents the world in a one-day marketplace set for noon to 5 p.m. 30 August 2014 near the intersection of Mass Ave, College Avenue and St. Clair Street. (The actual street address is the Indianapolis Professional Firefighters Local 416, 748 Massachusetts Avenue, Indianapolis, Indiana.)

It's an event that'll be repeated from noon to 5 p.m. 27 September 2014.

Despite what you may think from looking at the name, this market isn't envisioned a masculine endeavor. Manthan is a Hindi word that means "churning of knowledge."

This Indianapolis Observer wonders why Manthan Market hasn't already partnered with Indy Ethnic Food -- another non-profit with congruent goals. Seems like there'd be instant synergy.

(Photo Courtesy of Manthan International Market)

Friday, August 15, 2014

Squirrel Hunting Season Begins Today

No, I'm not making this up.

The 2014-2015 fall hunting season has arrived with the opening of squirrel hunting season today, 15 August 2014.

Squirrel season will continue through January 31, 2015.

Hunters may harvest both gray and fox squirrels (that's a fox squirrel, at left), and can "harvest" (that's the DNR term) up to five squirrels per day.

To hunt squirrels, Indiana residents must purchase the annual hunting license for $17 ($7 youth consolidated license), and nonresidents must purchase the $80 annual hunting license or the $31 five-day hunting license ($17 annual youth hunting).

To purchase a hunting license, go to Additional information on regulations and licensing is at

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Bait-and-Switch Bikes

"You can buy a 24-hour pass for $8 as part of Indy's new Pacers Bikeshare program and get unlimited use of a bike for 24 hours.

"But there's a catch. If you don't check the bike in every 30 minutes at one of 25 stations dotted along the Cultural Trail, that $8 bill will skyrocket to $194 for 24 hours."

This Indianapolis Observer is appalled. Who rides a bike, stopping along the Cultural Trail for less than a half-hour at a time? That's not enough time to browse in the Kurt Vonnegut Museum or savor a coffee at Starbucks or shop at Circle Center Mall or make a trip to the library.

What idiot/ approved this get-rich-quick scheme?


More reasons to avoid the Bikeshare program are outlined here:

Sunday, July 6, 2014

On Our Way to a Record

"Indianapolis' violent year has become more so with two holiday weekend shootings, including one that killed a decorated officer."

Yes, we made national news again today (this report is via the Associated Press) -- and not in a good way.

This Indianapolis Observer wonders where all the trolls who attacked Mayor Bart Peterson for the homicide rate are hiding, now that Mayor Greg Ballard's administration is cruising toward the all-time high number of homicides in a single year (and it's only July).

But, look! shiny! we've got the Pacers and the Colts and Indy Eleven and a Cricket Park and a soon-to-be-renovated Natatorium...!