Road Trip Ends With A Sparkle

My Fourth of July weekend started like this: “What are we doing over the fourth?” Ginger asked me Thursday night.

“Well, I thought we would take a road trip. We haven’t done that in a long time,” I suggested.

“Where we going?” Ginger asked like a small child would do.

“Thought we would go west and find that town you talk about around Indy,” I related.

“That sounds like fun,” she gleamed. “I’ll make arrangements for Rosie, and we can get an early start on Friday.

Ginger has been talking about the city of Carmel, Indiana for a long time. I thought we could visit Hoosier Park on the way, and stay the night in Carmel.

The trip began early Friday morning as planned. My son, JR and his wife Lainie, suggested we take US 36 West toward Anderson. When we arrived at Hoosier Park, we explored and exited within one hour. Just wasn’t our cup of tea.

Our On Star navigated us toward Carmel and we made one detour to a little town called Broad Ripple.

The only way to describe Broad Ripple is to say it’s a place for mature, modern Hippies. A little more than laid back, just two notches above Woodstock.

On our arrival, I suggested we find a place to stop for a cold drink. We missed a turn, and found a little place tucked behind the main thoroughfare. I had to convince Ginger it was safe, so we ventured inside.

The gentleman sitting beside me, nick named Frog, informed me he wrote for the bi-weekly Broad Ripple Gazette. He also mentioned that the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra was playing at a near by prairie with fire works. Ginger over heard our conversation, and immediately elbowed me that we should go.

After further conversation, we learned that the major sponsor for this event was Marsh Super Markets. There was a fee of $30 per adult, but that didn’t faze Ginger.

After our venture to find the nearest Marsh Market, we purchase our tickets, bought some deli sandwiches, water, snacks and two folding chairs. “This better be good,” I thought to myself.

As we were leaving the grocery store, a lady approached me and politely asked, “Have you ever been to the Marsh Symphony?”

“We’re here on a two-day road trip,” I replied. “Why do you ask?”

“You probably should go right now, the gates open at 4:30 p.m. and it’s now 6:30 p.m.,” she informed us. “There’s always a huge crowd every year.”

We arrived at Conner Prairie around 7:00 p.m. The crowds were just as the polite lady had told us. We searched out an empty space, and set up our little camp. Everyone around us were eating their picnic meals, drinking fine wine, and enjoying the perfect night. We fit right in.

The symphony played for two hours. Between certain numbers, the American flag was presented often, with everyone standing with respect. You could see veterans standing in salute posture until the flag passed. It was good to be an American. You could hear nearby patrons say, “Thank you for serving.”

By 10:15 p.m. the Symphony was playing Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture solennelle, Op 49 and the fireworks were covering the sky. It was truly a wonderful sight.

This week’s bottom line: “Thanks Babe, that was the best Fireworks display I’ve ever witnessed. It then took us another hour to leave the prairie grounds.

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