$8 – $10

Irvington Walking Tour

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Bona Thompson Memorial Center

5350 East University Avenue

Indianapolis, IN 46219

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Thanks to Alexander Ralston’s 1821 design of the capital city and those who followed his lead, Indianapolis presents a practical, easy-to-navigate grid of ruler-straight streets. Which makes the areas that deviate from the grid—like Irvington, an 1870s planned suburb on the city’s east side—all the more inviting. In May, we offer you two ways to explore Irvington—on foot or on bicycle.

A National Register-listed district where Craftsman bungalows and period revival homes line the curving, tree-lines streets, Irvington is a wonderful place for a walking tour. The area experienced a building boom in the 1870s when Butler University arrived there. The university stayed in Irvington for 54 years and landmarks from the period include the university’s library (which will be open for the tour) and the 1873 Second Empire-style Benton House, built for a Butler president.

Your guided tour begins at the Bona Thompson Memorial Center and takes you through Irvington’s winding, shady streets flanked by the varied architecture of the historic homes, ranging from the stately nineteenth-century Benton House to Arts and Crafts bungalows. You’ll also see inside Irvington Presbyterian Church, and you’ll hear stories about the artists, suffragettes, and students who lived in Irvington.

To make sure you have a great tour, we limit each timed entry group to 20 people. You must buy a ticket in advance for one of the six start times.

Rain date: Thursday, May 25

Indiana Landmarks and Historic Urban Neighborhoods of Indianapolis partner with Vintage Irvington blogger Bill Gulde and the Irvington Historical Society to present the Irvington walking and bike tours in May, Preservation Month in Indiana and across the nation.

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Bona Thompson Memorial Center

5350 East University Avenue

Indianapolis, IN 46219

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