When you stop and think about it, limestone is the very foundation of Indiana. Not only is it found in most buildings on Indiana University’s campus and many buildings around the state (I even grew up in a limestone house in Muncie), it is below the surface in a big strip along southern Indiana.
So it’s only appropriate that June 2009 is the first-ever Limestone Month celebration, as designated by the Lawrence County Tourism Commission and the Bloomington-Monroe County Convention and Visitors Bureau. They’re celebrating it in Lawrence County and nearby areas. In fact, Lawrence County is known as the Limestone Capital of the World, since limestone from the county was used to build the Empire State Building, and most recently, the new Yankee Stadium.
The famous stone belt in South Central Indiana runs from Stinesville in Monroe County to Bedford in Lawrence County.
“Lawrence County’s limestone quarries, architecture and artistic carvings are well known,” said Dave Branneman, executive director of the Lawrence County Tourism Commission. “Limestone Month will celebrate limestone history and a variety of events, tours and exhibits are scheduled all month long.”
While there are too many events to list here (you can get the Limestone Month events calendar at www.limestonemonth.com, a few that might be of interest to you Limestone fans:
- Tour the world’s only underground limestone quarry in Bedford (Lawrence County).
- Learn about the limestone legacy at Spring Mill Village and Spring Mill State Park.
- Of course, visit the Limestone Heritage Festival in Bedford
The Limestone Heritage Festival is held June 26-July 4 in Bedford and will be one of the final events during Limestone Month. On Saturday, June 27, free guided tours to Elliot Stone underground quarry are available through Elite Tours with advance reservation. On Saturday, July 4, an exhibit of limestone carvers’ work will be open to the public.
Also on Saturday, July 4, Carousel Winery in Bedford is hosting a Limestone Artisan Fair with live music, food, wine tasting and artisans with limestone-related wares. In addition, the Lawrence County Museum of History and the Land of Limestone Museum will be welcoming visitors. The Limestone Heritage Festival offers activities for all ages, including an old-fashioned ice cream social, band concert, parade and Fourth of July fireworks display.
For more information, visit the Lawrence County Tourism Commission at www.LimestoneCountry.com.