In some ways, it is hard to believe it’s been a year. In other ways — like how far this blog has come — it seems like it has been much longer. Today, the All Access Hendricks County blog commemorates its one-year anniversary, and I, for one, am celebrating. On Nov. 1, 2011, I introduced you to the blog, and during our first few months, we tried to provide at least three stories a week to promote tourism in Hendricks County. It has been a fun ride. Mostly through trial and error, we have grown to realize what you like to read and attempted to come up with innovative ways to provide that content. In June, we hired six part-time bloggers who became an integral part of what we do and upped our offerings to about a story daily. Those talented writers also have provided the kind of insider knowledge you can only get here. Corkey's Fabulous 50's We plan to build upon what we’ve started for an even better second year. But for now let’s celebrate this first year with a look back at the Top 10 most popular stories that graced our blog site. To read each story in its entirety, simply click on its headline.
  1. Corkey’s Fabulous 50's brings back poodle skirts, great food — We definitely learned during this first year that nothing drives readership more than people’s stomachs as restaurant reviews quickly became one of our most viewed topics. Throw in a new mom-and-pop restaurant that helps empty nesters fondly remember their childhood and you have a winner.
  2. New Cheddar’s restaurant has something for everyone — Remember when I told you restaurant reviews and particularly new restaurant reviews drive traffic to our blog? Make it 2 for 2. If you’ve seen the parking lot outside Cheddar’s or tried to get a seat, you probably are aware that its popularity hasn’t slowed down much since it opened this summer.
  3. New Gordmans opens in Avon, Indiana — Once again, a new attraction always tends to interest locals and visitors alike as readers want to get the inside scoop by finding out what our Digital Destination Experts think. This story continues to attract daily readers months later.
  4. What you need to know for Super Bowl celebration in Hendricks County, Indy — The oldest story and the only one published in 2011 to make our list had to of course be tied to the Super Bowl’s arrival in Central Indiana. We had so much fun in January and early February as the world turned its attention here. Another Super Bowl related story — Your complete guide to Super Bowl XLVI fan festivities — narrowly missed this list finishing 11th.
  5. John Force Racing, NHRA gearing up for new season — Though motorsports and specifically the U.S. Nationals at Lucas Oil Raceway brings a lot of visitors to Hendricks County, this post being among the Top 10 viewed stories over the past year was a bit of a surprise, albeit a pleasant one. This particular post included a short video of Brittany Force discussing her plans to test the team’s first Top Fuel car.
  6. Top 10: Hendricks County Fall Festivals — This particular post was the most popular of our Top 10 lists, which all have been well-read and will continue to be a big part of what we do moving forward.
  7. Looking for something spooky? Old Hendricks County Jail awaits — This post really took off the moment it appeared as other blog sites picked it up. It made our Top 10 for the year despite only being up for five weeks!
  8. New Teddy’s Burger Joint opens in Metropolis — Another new restaurant review that has received mixed comments since being posted. Give it a click and check it out for yourself.
  9. Perillo's Pizzeria, North Salem, Ind. New Perillo’s Pizzeria serves up a slice of Italy in Hendricks County — Our fourth and final restaurant review to make it into the Top 10, though another review featuring Dawson’s Too Sticks & Stones made it into the Top 12. If you haven’t been up to North Salem to check out Perillo’s yet, you need to go!
  10. Two rising country music stars to perform at Hendricks County Fair — Another surprise rounded out our first year’s Top 10 as many of our readers were interested in this year’s headlining act at the fair.
I want to take this final opportunity to thank all of our loyal readers, industry partners and Hendricks County visitors who make tourism and this blog so popular. I personally can’t wait to find out what our second year holds as we continue to provide you the best insider information about Hendricks County tourism. Please, stay tuned and share our site with your friends, family and other potential visitors.