As you explore Midland Arts & Antiques Market (907 E. Michigan St., 317-267-9005), be careful not to lose yourself entirely in the enchanting, antiquarian wonderland. The two seemingly endless floors of yesterday’s treasures and trinkets have attracted browsers to this converted old window-and-sash factory for nearly 25 years. Ideally, allot yourself at least two hours to take it all in. An abbreviated, yet representative, sampling can be had by holding fast to the north-south aisle just beyond the cash registers. Check out Booth 9223, about halfway down that aisle, for a collection of striking and eccentric modern art and photography. Head on back toward the stairs for more whimsical artistic offerings.
Puppy love abounds at Downtown Doggie (925 E. Vermont St., 317-979-2665), where the friendly, trained professionals will take good care of your precious little fur baby. The menu of practical services has plenty of spoiling built in—from boarding and daycare, to grooming and bathing, to obedience and agility classes—so your canine will be the envy of all the other dogs on the block. Kiddie pools and sprinklers add a little joie de vivre to your pet’s stay for fun all summer long.
Zoom in to Flat12 Bierwerks (414 N. Dorman St., 317-426-5851), named for the Flathead 12-cylinder engine that changed the racing world forever. The brewery plays up the racecar connection—from its Pace Lap Cream Ale to new all-day breakfast from Turn 3 Chicken & Waffles. Head out to the deck for beer-barrel pong.
Smoking Goose Meatery’s (407 Dorman St., 317-638-6328) wholesale shop has long been open to the public just a few hours a month. This summer, the Goose unveils its Public Smokehouse, with a weekly market, plus a menu of ready-to-eat in-house barbecue.
Tastefully painted in muted and mostly neutral hues, the row of modern homes facing the eastern edge of Highland Park (1100 E. New York St.) may remind passersby familiar with San Francisco (or anyone who grew up watching Full House) of those inimitable Painted Ladies. These dwellings—and many other Holy Cross houses designed and built by Indianapolis-based Re-Development Group—mix and mingle well with the fanciful late-Victorian frills of the neighborhood’s oldest homes. Take a sun-kissed walk in the park to soak in the architecture and general charm. July 4 is a good day to do it—snag a spot on one of these hills for the best seat to the downtown fireworks show.
A recent addition to the city’s foodie scene, King Dough (452 N. Highland Ave., 317-602-7960) brings sizzling life to its wood-fired pizzas. Try the Destroyer, piled high with mozzarella, rosemary, basil, garlic, goat cheese, sausage, and Mike’s Hot Honey. Or the scratch-made chorizo burger with manchego—yep, that’s a lot of spicy sausage. Flip the menu over to marvel at the extensive list of cocktails and “adult” Italian sodas, drafts, and bottles from around the corner and around the globe, and a curious list of both American and European apéritifs and digestifs. With its casual elegance, King Dough reigns.
Immerse yourself in the urban gardener’s dream that is Grounded Plant & Floral Co. (1501 E. Michigan St., 317-426-5528). Your senses will be pleasantly overwhelmed in this lush, botanical safari of plants; horticultural books; naturally scented candles, soaps, and fragrances; and assorted paraphernalia for building an enviable city garden. Grounded offers full-service wedding floral work, as well as workshops in succulent oases, terrariums, macramé, and plant education. Everything about the store lends an appropriately earthy atmosphere that just makes you want to get dirt under your fingernails—then wash right up with something fragrant and natural.
Get your Tex-Mex fill at prices your abuelita will approve of at La Parada (1642 E. New York St., 317-917-0095). While longtime patrons may still mourn its departure from the narrow hole-in-the-wall original just a stone’s throw from the current location, La Parada’s expanded seating and in-your-face colorful decor never fail to please—nor do the margaritas. And if you’ve never treated yourself to the life-changing potion known as horchata (a chilled, spiced-up rice milk), try it here.
Get your indie groove on at State Street Pub (243 N. State Ave., 317-384-1238), host of diverse musical offerings from local and touring acts. Garage rock? Check. Punk? Check. Electronica and progressive pop? You got it. Order up a beer, dial it up to 11, and don’t miss the ever-popular “stoner fries.” (Ask your stomach first how it feels about jalapeño sour cream and Sriracha.) State Street is the kind of dimly lit, low-key, divey, cool-hang music venue every neighborhood wishes it had.