Visit Hendricks County in collaboration with Visit Morgan County and the Hendricks County Arts Council has released its stops and a new Guidebook for this year's Rural Routes to Main Street Cultural Trail.
I am so excited for the Cultural Trail this year. My favorite stops remain though it continues to get bigger as an additional six stops have been added in 2015. Counting the Second Saturday locations (more on that unique feature in a moment), 35 cultural sites await you. Art galleries, restaurants, shops and experiences are sure to make your visit to beautiful central Indiana a memorable one.
Hendricks County Loop
Beginning in Danville for the Hendricks County loop, The Porch is back on the trail after a one-year hiatus. A refurbished 1856 one-room schoolhouse, this tea room features a full lunch menu, gifts, teas and books. Their menu includes organic and gluten-free items and more than 50 varieties of fresh-brewed teas.
Jane's on the Square joins the trail for the first time. This resale boutique features jewelry, handcrafted items and brand-name designer clothing, too.
Also, in Danville, you can browse beautiful art from local artists at Gallery on the Square; savor homemade bread, pies and cakes at The Bread Basket Cafe & Bakery and stop in for a chocolate creation at Confection Delights.
Other favorites of mine along the Hendricks County loop can be found in North Salem as McCloud Nature Park has a small art gallery that you would probably miss if you weren't looking for it.
Its nature-inspired artwork that adorns the walls features permanent and monthly guest artist displays.
Of course, a visit to North Salem would not be complete without Perillo's Pizzeria & Italian Kitchen. Pizza, pasta, sandwiches salads and desserts are included on the menu plus hand-crafted beer. Yum!
Don't forget about the shopping opportunities at FROGS Fossil Rock & Gemstone Store in Pittsboro and Artistic Designs Gallery, Finer Things and Frazee Gardens in Brownsburg.
New this year in Plainfield is uPaint Pottery Studio. This paint-your-own pottery and glass-fusing art studio is a creative adventure all its own, though no experience is necessary.
They will walk you through each step and in the end you have a piece to call your very own.
Other Plainfield stops include Nomad Yarns, the Gallery at the Plainfield-Guilford Township Public Library, Chateau Thomas Winery, Black Swan Brewpub and Three Pints Brewpub (a new addition).
Morgan County Loop
Speaking of Three Pints, that establishment is the only member with locations in both Hendricks and Morgan counties featured on the trail. Three Pints just opened a new location in Martinsville late last year that includes a tasting room and brewery.
Zydeco's Cajun Actual is another great Morgan County stop featuring Southern Louisiana food with a Mardi Gras theme.
Martinsville Candy Kitchen is an old-fashioned candy store, soda shop and ice cream parlor and is an experience in and of itself.
Also, don't miss locations like Berries and Ivy, JK's Cheesecake Cafe and Coffee, Hunter's Honey Farm, Mooresville Open Market Antiques and Cedar Creek Winery.
Two of my personal favorites in Morgan County are The Sterling Butterfly, an art studio and gift shop highlighting over 30 Indiana artists, and Art Sanctuary, a gallery and studio that provides the opportunity to speak one on one with the artists themselves.
Second Saturday Sites
A select group of shops that aren't normally open to the public come alive on the second Saturday of each month as an extension of the Cultural Trail.
Hot Blown Glass, Ltd., The Hendricks County Historical Museum and Sally Ann's Ceramics rounds out Second Saturday sites in Hendricks County.
Morgan County boasts five Second Saturday sites including Academy of Hoosier Heritage, Ateliers, Everything's A Canvas Art Studio, Monrovia Mudworks and new this year Lynne Medsker Art & Photography, a professional art and photography studio in the middle of 13 acres of beautiful Morgan County land. Lynne even has a small project for her guests to create and take home as a memento from their visit.
So there you have it. With a scenic drive and multiple stops along the way, the Rural Routes to Main Street Cultural Trail is chock full of things to do any day of the year.
The Guidebook for this year's Cultural Trail is available online and in print at any of the stops along the trail. The guide includes a list of special events happening throughout the year. You can also follow the Cultural Trail on Facebook or find them on Twitter and Instagram so you'll always be in the know.
My personal goal this year is to visit every stop on the trail. Will you join me? I hope to see you on the Trail.