There’s more than corn in Indiana….
If you’re a Hoosier, you’re familiar with this phrase. It’s from a theme park commercial that entices vacation goers to Lake Schafer, Indiana. But what if you’re a beer blogger and you saw Indianapolis, Indiana as a location nominee for the 2012 Beer Bloggers Conference? Chances are you thought, “what the??” like Fermentedly Challenged. Indianapolis is so much more than the Indianapolis 500. I worked with The Indianapolis Visitors and Convention Association on our bid for the Beer Bloggers Conference. We’ll definitely offer more than corn….
Indianapolis is home to over a dozen breweries. Not mediocre breweries. Award winning breweries. Indiana had the highest award winning percentage by state at GABF. Leading the pack was Sun King Brewing Company. Sun King Brewing Co. is located in downtown Indianapolis and wrote a letter of recommendation for our city to host the Beer Bloggers Conference. Down the street is Flat 12 Bierwerks. Not even open a year yet, and they have been receiving praises not only for their community involvement, but one of the best porters most people have tasted. Look for them smashing competitions in the future. They call their fans HopStars. Broad Ripple is home to our brew pub scene. Brugge Brasserie (also a GABF winner), Thr3e Wisemen Brewing Company (a ski lodge feel with iPads on the tables), and the original Broad Ripple Brewpub are all within walking distance of each other and a short cab ride from downtown. Bier Brewery is our golden child nano brewery. Each batch is hand crafted and although they say they are open from Wednesday til Sunday, good freaking luck getting beer on Sunday. They typically run out. Triton Brewing Company is so new, I haven’t been yet! Breweries are opening as fast as permits are issued. Fountain Square (so new it doesn’t have a website so I linked to a news article) and Black Acre ( I dare you to click you are not 21.) are up next and I can’t keep up with it.
Hotels and Airfare
How many of us stayed at the Best Western in Boulder? I didn’t attend Portland solely due to hotel and airfare. We have the top of the line hotels in Indy vying for this conference. The J.W. Mariott (oh the largest JW in the world) and Conrad (top Hilton hotel) have both bid blogger friendly prices and made the conference possible. Airfare to Indy is reasonable or if you can take an extra day, we’re within 24 hr driving distance of half the country. Our airport is also very close to downtown with shuttles, transportation and if all else fails, I can give you a ride…which leads me to my next point….
We’re a convention town. We’re the second largest convention town behind Las Vegas. We host more conferences than New York City, Boston, and Orlando. Our downtown reflects that with high quality bars and restaurants within walking distance of all the hotels. If you feel like getting to good beer a little faster, we have a pedicab service that will take you around downtown for $5. Indianapolis is hosting our first Super Bowl in February and while residents including myself curse at the construction, you’ll be reaping the rewards. Our entire downtown is getting a face lift and walking access will be easier than ever. Here’s a map of the downtown area including hotels, bars and breweries. It’s all so convenient. Our visitors association and brewers guild, amazing hotels, and all the best bars and restaurants want the beer bloggers conference. We embrace conferences like out of town family members. You’ll be welcomed and doted upon.
We’re not Chicago or Boulder or Portland, Asheville, Austin or St. Louis. We don’t want to be. We’re Indianapolis.
Update! Zephyr Adventures announced yesterday that Indianapolis will be the host city for Beer Bloggers Conference 2012! There is also an option to visit Chicago as well for a pre-conference night with Goose Island. We would like to encourage as many bloggers as possible to make the trip for both Chicago and Indianapolis. Let us know if you have any Indy specific questions and we’ll see you in July!