How Do You Play?

Clown and audience member interacting

In 1994, at 25 years of age, I penned, produced, and performed my first one-man show, He Can Amuse Himself for Hours. Chicago Reader critic, Justin Hayford, viewed the work as an examination of, “…[T]he impossibility of having a genuine experience.” The show was a collection of personal play memories set against the relief of…

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Historic Baseball in Indiana

Historic Baseball teams pose for a team picture

Baseball is a sport rooted within American culture. While the sport was born in America, today it is played in over 100 countries. Growing up, I have fond memories of going to the Indianapolis Indians games and watching the Cubs on TV. My brother played little league and my whole family would come together to…

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What July Fourth Means to History

Celebrating Glorious 4th at Prairietown

Every July Fourth holiday I have experienced has been different from the year before. Some years I celebrate with my family in our backyard with delicious hot dogs and bright sparklers; other years I’ve enjoyed The Fourth at a friend’s house for a pool party. Most recently I visited my aunt’s house where we watched…

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A Full Schedule and Full Capacity for 2021 Kroger Symphony on the Prairie

Symphony on the Prairie

New concerts featuring audience favorites for maximum-capacity audiences. Following local, state and federal health protocols, Kroger Symphony on the Prairie will open to full-capacity beginning with the first scheduled concert, this Friday, June 25. To assure the safest and most comfortable environment, the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, in partnership with Conner Prairie will issue a maximum…

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Ignite Your Curiosity as a Youth Volunteer

Youth Ag Volunteer

Becoming a Youth Volunteer at Conner Prairie When I was 9 years old, my mother called me over to her computer one day to show me some information she’d found online regarding a youth volunteering program at Conner Prairie. I was in that stage of life that nearly every child goes through, where the idea…

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Summer Celebrations: Freedom for All?

Emancipation Day Celebration in 1900

Stephenson, Mrs. Charles (Grace Murray). [Emancipation Day Celebration, June 19, 1900], photograph, June 19, 1900; ( accessed May 26, 2021), Austin History Center, Austin Public Library. Fireworks, cookouts, family reunions, and vacations are traditional scenes of American summers. Top summer celebrations include that of family and freedom from Memorial Day to the Fourth of July.…

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Being Your True Self at Conner Prairie

Andrew Bradford with his family

A Commitment to Diversity, Equity, Accessibility, and Inclusion “Separate or together?” “One-check or two?” These are questions my husband and I receive regularly in Central Indiana, and throughout the Midwest. We will go to breakfast with our kids and receive questions and comments about what our wives may be up to while we are out…

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Happy Hour on the Horizon: 2021 History on Tap

Live music at History on Tap

WE ARE Makers and Mixers After a year cooped up indoors, Summer 2021 is approaching and I’m seeking all the opportunities to adventure outside and safely attend events. Maybe that’s you too? If so, I hope you plan to join the Conner Prairie and the Horizon Council at the 9th annual History on Tap on…

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2021 International Heritage Breeds Week at Conner Prairie

Tunis Sheep

International Heritage Breeds Week: May 16th – 22nd International Heritage Breeds Week is upon us (May 16th-22nd) and I know the Agriculture (Ag) staff and I are excited about all of the extra programs we have developed to allow our guests to dive deeper into our heritage breeds at Conner Prairie. This week, we invite…

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Conner Prairie’s Historic Livestock Program is Hero of Heritage Breeds Week

Heritage Breeds Week

This effort to preserve endangered livestock is part of the museum’s sustainability efforts May 14, 2021 INDIANAPOLIS — This week, Conner Prairie is celebrating International Heritage Breeds Week, an event that encourages the preservation of endangered livestock breeds that were raised by farmers before modern, higher producing breeds replaced them. Conner Prairie maintains four heritage…

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A Passion for Animal Preservation

English Longhorn Heritage Breed

When people ask me what I do for a living, I sometimes struggle to explain. Saying, “I manage the livestock and agriculture experiences at Conner Prairie,” just feels lacking because what my team does here at Conner Prairie is so much more than can be summed up in a simple sentence.  When people find out…

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Adventure Camp at Conner Prairie

Camper showing off his archery target

A look at the Social and Emotional Benefits of Summer Camp Of all the fun activities that campers enjoy at Conner Prairie Adventure Camp, shooting archery is always among the most popular. Over a given summer, thousands of campers will send tens of thousands of arrows zipping towards a foam target. Of all those arrows,…

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A Joyous Return to Summer: Kroger Symphony on the Prairie

Symphony on the Prairie

Ticketing procedures and safety protocols new to 2021 (INDIANAPOLIS, IND – May 10, 2021) – After the only hiatus in its 40-year history, the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra in partnership with Conner Prairie is pleased to announce the 2021 season of Kroger Symphony on the Prairie. The season begins June 25 at the Conner Prairie Symphony…

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The Impact of a Simple Seed

Conner Prairie Garden

Some of my earliest memories of family revolve around gardening.  I remember “dancing” in the seeds as I followed behind my dad as he planted; snapping green beans for the quarts of beans my mom canned each year. I would dig for the buried treasure that was homegrown potatoes and harvest sweet corn that went…

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‘April is the Cruellest Month’

Blue Buffalo statue overlooking field

The Beauty of Poetry Twenty-five years ago, the American Academy of Poets launched National Poetry month. Since 1996, April has been a time to celebrate and explore the wonder of words that is the poem. Poetry is often perceived as difficult, by writers and readers alike, but we’ve subconsciously adopted bits of poetry as a…

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Adventures on the Prairie – The Conner Prairie-Hamilton Southeastern Schools Partnership

HSE Teacher-in-Residence Amy Murch teaches Archery to HSE 4th graders. Pre-Covid.

HSE Teacher-in-Residence Amy Murch teaches Archery to HSE 4th graders. Pre-Covid. Photo Credit: Unknown The Adventures on the Prairie partnership Here at Conner Prairie our mission is to be, “….a unique historic place that inspires curiosity and fosters learning by providing engaging and individualized experiences for everyone.” One of the ways we fulfill that mission…

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Conner Prairie Enacts Stabilization Project to Help Improve Drinking Water for Half a Million Hamilton County Residents

White River in Indianapolis

The planting, part of the Duke Energy Foundation-funded Shoreline Stabilization Project, will improve drinking water for nearly 540,000 Hamilton County residents Assets found here April 22, 2021 INDIANAPOLIS — This week, Conner Prairie will celebrate Earth Day and the museum’s commitment to river and land stewardship by dedicating the planting of trees on its grounds…

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Every Day is Earth Day

White River in Indianapolis

Celebrating Earth Day Since April 22, 1970, Earth Day has been a traditional celebration regarding the protection of our natural environments. A beautiful day dedicated to the thoughts and understandings of just how important nature’s systems are in all of our lives. A day meant to educate and celebrate all of the flora, fauna, and…

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Spring Comes to Conner Prairie

Spring At Conner Prairie

Signs of Spring on the Conner Prairie grounds Spring arrives at Conner Prairie in spurts. One day the sky is impossibly blue and the sun is shining. The next week it storms and the sleet hits my face. Two weeks after the big snow storm I stepped outside the front door of Facilities and saw…

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William Conner and the War of 1812

William Conner

The old adage “if only these walls could talk” holds a lot of weight when one walks past the historic buildings that have been assembled on the Conner Prairie grounds. Those buildings have seen more stories than we will ever know, and for the William Conner house this is especially true. William Conner did not…

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Conner Prairie Looks Back at 2020 During Virtual Annual Meeting


Year of “Business of the Unusual” Unpacked in Live Q&A  FISHERS, Ind. — (Friday, April 9, 2021) – Today Conner Prairie hosted their annual meeting where they celebrated the successes and challenges overcome during 2020. The event — held virtually for the second year in a row due to COVID-19 — brought Indiana community leaders…

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Beyond the Everyday

Jimmy Kiefel Drawing

So much of life is made up of everyday, predictable routine. For some it’s humdrum. For others, events that happen dependably at the same time every week are a source of peace and comfort. Routine creates a sense of normality and frees us from the anxiety of figuring out how to schedule our work and…

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How Two Brothers Transformed the Grounds at Conner Prairie

The McCune Brothers at the Conner House

Come join other adventurers who travel back in time at Conner Prairie to watch our skilled craftsmen ply their trades. Will you explore Prairietown to see Mr. McClure in his carpenter’s shop, or a blacksmith at work at the Curtis forge? Where does your curiosity lead? Are you coming to watch one of our skilled…

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