For anyone planning an outdoor event or general nature lovers, you can do no better than Cornerstone Hall in Washington County. With a bevvy of historical designations, scenic outlooks, and a rich history that forms much of Indiana’s character, you’re minutes away from everything — including supplies and last minute shopping.
A treasure of Washington County, Beck’s Mill was constructed in 1808 and served arriving settlers until 1825. Through a series of small renovations and updated, the mill operated until about 1950. Then in 2005 the mill was restored and saved for tourists. www.becksmill.com
Delaney Creek Park
Delaney Park covers 326 acres of land with 88 laces of lake water. Come fish, boat, hike, play ball, horseshoe, let the kids play, camp, or lodge at Delaney. You can even access the Knobstone Trail, Indiana’s longest and maybe roughest trail. www.delaneypark.com
Since 1947 racers across the US have turned to and into the Salem Speedway. Among the legends of racers who have challenged the oval include Jeff Gordon, Tony Stewart, Rusty Wallace, A.J. Foyt, Al Unser and more. www.salemspeedway.com
The John Hay Center & Depot Railroad Museum
John Hay, a Salem native who served as President Lincoln’s private secretary, among other distinguished positions as ambassador and later Secretary of State, is honored at this historical preservation. The museum on the campus was built in 1970 and renovated in 1995 and includes hundreds of relics and one of Indiana’s largest genealogy research libraries. A life-like pioneer village sits on the grounds and transports visitors back to the 1840’s. John Hay’s home is also on the grounds. www.johnhaycenter.org
In case you run out of streamers or forgot the icing for the cupcakes, you’re just blocks away from nearby shopping, including one of Indiana’s largest JayC grocery stores (a Kroger subsidiary) and the largest Wal-Mart in Southern Indiana.