By Ilona Kauremszky

Q: My two sons aged eight and five are as fanatical about The Indy 500 as I am. While I never had a chance to visit when a kid, I thought it might be fun to take them along to see next year's. If I drove from Niagara Falls how long of a trip would I anticipate and if I flew there what carriers can I hook up with? Also, if you have any details on Indy packages I'd love to hear them. Anything with a kiddie theme is always appreciated.

A: Driving from Niagara Falls to Indianapolis takes roughly 8.5 hours. I know Air Canada offers a daily non-stop out of Pearson—costing only $300 USD if booked far enough in advance. In terms of two cool hotels that are currently open and extremely kid friendly—both offer family packages centered around the Indy 500. Consider the Holiday Inn North at the Pyramids ( It’s a Holiday Inn with a huge indoor water park, called “Caribbean Cove.” There’s a massive bucket dumping station and a tall and super long super flume slide.

Afterwards, you can drift lazily around on a leisure river. Also the Crowne Plaza Hotel ( located in downtown is in the city’s historic Union Station which is purported to be the oldest union station in the US. They have authentic 1920’s Train Car sleeping rooms. Because it is a working train station connected to the hotel, you can hear the rumble of the trains.

While in town, be sure to visit the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis (1.3 million visitors per year). It’s the world’s largest children’s museum housing 11 major galleries. They have a cool exhibit where kids can dig for dinosaur bones alongside a real paleontologist.


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