The Sacred Heart Basilica is a magnificent work of art on the Notre Dame Campus: gorgeous, Gothic-inspired architecture, beautiful French stained-glass windows and vibrant, colorful artwork on the interior. A nice place to visit for a mass, a prayer or quiet reflection.
The Word of Life Mural, A.K.A. "Touchdown Jesus," is a famous landmark on the Notre Dame Campus. It is a huge mosaic of Jesus on the library building, facing the football field, with his arms raised, cheering on the Irish! It is visible from the field, so players can see Jesus cheering for the Irish!
Don't forget to take a picture in front of Touchdown Jesus! And make sure you're rooting for His team!!!
One of the most beautiful college campuses, Notre Dame is filled with beautiful trails for walking around. There are many colorful trees and also two beautiful lakes: St. Joseph's and St. Mary's. Pick up a map online or at the Eck Visitors Center (next to the bookstore), or just walk where you would like.
HealthWorks is a museum dedicated totally toward children. The museum teaches kids about their health and their bodies, which only makes sense since it is part of the Memorial Health System. I believe the museum would be best enjoyed by kids age 12 and under. It is located at the corner of Main and Jefferson in downtown South Bend. It is open weekdays 9am-4pm and Saturdays Noon-4pm, closed Sundays. Prices are $5 for adults, kids 2-17 are $3, Seniors 55 and older are $4, and children under 2 are free.
This Prairie-style home defintely stands out from the other homes on Washington Street. Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright in 1906 and originally owned by Kersey DeRhodes, a prominent South Bend businessman, it is one of two FLW designs in South Bend. Note that it is privately owned.
The South Bend Farmers Market is a great place to visit and shop in any season. It is open year-round, indoors and outdoors. Here is where you can get your fresh fruit and vegetables or just walk and look around. There are many booths with locals from Northern Indiana who come to sell fresh produce, cheeses, crafts, flowers, baked goods, etc. There is something for everyone here! There is also a popular cafe with great diner meals. You'll love it!
The Farmer's Market is open Saturdays from 7am-3pm, Tuesdays and Thursdays from 7am-2pm, and also from May-Sept on Fridays from 7am-2pm.
Notre Dame means "Our Lady" in French. On the university campus, there is a small grotto modeled after the famous Lady of Lourdes Grotto in France, where St. Bernadette claimed to have visions of the Virgin Mary. Notre Dame founder, Father Edward Sorin was from France, and helped to have the grotto built. One of the stones at the grotto is from the original grotto in France.
There are candles you can light here, and at night the whole grotto is illuminated. It can be very spiritual and even romantic. Many students have proposed here. There are also masses and a daily praying of the rosary at 6:45 p.m. You can visit the grotto at any time and say a prayer for your family and friends. If you go there before a game, say a prayer for the team... Go Irish!
There is a nice path along St. Joseph's River that is good for a stroll, a jog or even for canoeing. There are many people seen taking advantage of the beautiful views of nature in the parks along the river. It's a great place to take some photos! Here are some from the fall.
The heartland of Amish country is Shipshewana, just 1/2h drive eastwards along US 20. Besides the general athomosphere there indmist of Amish horse buggies, especially the museum Menno-Hof is very interesting. It serves the Amish Mennonite history in about 5 very interesting and informative multi media packages of approx. 5-10 minutes each. It starts with an interesting point of view of the use of fences, continues with the history of christianity from their view, then the experiences in European dungeons in earlier times, then the shipment to America, their history in America, a Tornado-Blizzard experience in a movable chamber and at last some more explanations about mennonite services (with a slightly missionary touch - but only this last presentation). It is really a great show, run non-commercially by vonlunteers! Entrance fee is 6$.
Lake Michigan hosts two major sand dune parks in Indiana. They have similar names, but each contains a variety of things to see, do, and visit. The State park is much more oriented towards the beach, but has nearly 10 miles of trails the protected Dune Nature Preserve.
See my Indiana Dunes SP for details or see VT's Indiana Dunes State Park page.
Just an hour west and you come to Lake Michigan. If you're in South bend, you're in the center of the largest lake region in the world. Nearly 20% of the worlds freshwater is located here and the St. Joseph River runs northwestward into Lake Michigan.
VT's Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore page.
My Indiana Dunes NL page
Of all the football games I've witnessed in my lifetime, none come close to watching the Fighting Irish take the field against a nationally ranked opponent. Watching the Blue & Gold come storming out of the tunnel will give you goose bumps every time.
After the game, enjoy the evening at some South Bend staples....Corby's or The Linebacker. Relive the game's highlights in one of these fine establishments.
(It is highly recommended that you watch the movie "Rudy" before watching the game, especially if you are unfamiliar with the tradition and passion that is ND FOOTBALL)
According to the stadium announcer, Notre Dame's marching band was the first college marching band in the country. I've seen and heard a lot of marching bands and in my opinion ND''s is one of the best. One of their traditions is to play their opponent's fight song before the start of the each football game. Very cool and classy! Bruins fans at the game really enjoyed ND's band rendition of UCLA's "Sons of Westwood."
Experiencing a college football game in this most sacred stadium is unbelievable. The stadium capacity holds over 80,000 people. There are no jumbo trons, sky boxes, artificial turf, etc. This is how college football should be played!
The grotto is a replica of Our Lady of Lordes in France. Visit the grotto and light a candle for your team. I was told by a ND friend of mine that the grotto was a popular place for marriage proposals.