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SOUTH BEND, Ind. — As many families are discovering, there’s a lot of summertime fun in the historic area of South Bend, Ind., and it’s surprisingly affordable.

It’s just a two-hour drive from Chicago and is probably best known for being the home of the University of Notre Dame. The school’s celebrated grotto and Touchdown Jesus are an uplifting prelude to one of the best stadium tours in America.

Visitors can walk down some of the most recognized stairs in football and touch the iconic “Play Like a Champion” sign just like players do when they hit the field.

There’s also a stadium ballroom and new hospitality areas for conferences, weddings and student dances.

Tours are just $20 for adults and $15 for children.

Edge Adventures offers South Bend zip-lines and an aerial obstacle course. There’s also the first man-made whitewater rafting course in North America at downtown’s East Race Waterway.

Visitors can unwind with a spirited trivia night at South Bend Brew Werks. The family-owned brewery donates a portion of every sale to the local charity of your choice.

South Bend’s talented minor league Cubs play at Four Winds Field. The gem of a stadium has picnic tables down the third-base line, ivy on the center field wall and a family-friendly atmosphere.

There is also the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League with the South Bend Blue Sox. The team traveled the United States and Latin America during World War II. The remarkable league is celebrating its 75th anniversary at The History Museum. The museum is a South Bend treasure located next door to the Studebaker National Museum.

Luminous masterworks are on display at The History Museum’s exhibit on glass artist Louis C. Tiffany, and 50 are objects are available to view.

And there’s nothing quite like the Tiffany windows in The History Museum’s Oliver Mansion, the longtime home to 19th Century industrialist J.D. Oliver and his family. The electrified home was a rarity in 1897 with state-of-the-art central heat. Visitors can see the original furnishings in all 38 rooms.

Helpful links to plan your trip

Notre Dame Stadium Tour

Notre Dame – Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes
Eck Visitor’s Center
100 Eck Center
Notre Dame, IN 46556
Phone 574-631-6000

South Bend Cubs
Four Winds Field

The History Museum
808 W Washington
South Bend, IN

Edge Adventure Park – Rum Village (South Bend area)
1180 Koteewi Dr.
Noblesville, IN

East Race Waterway (Whitewater)
126 South Niles Avenue
South Bend, IN 46617
Open through August 27, 2017
Saturdays 12 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Sundays 1 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Additional Dates –
September 3: 1 p.m. – 5 p.m.
September 10: 1 p.m. – 5 p.m.
126 South Niles Avenue
South Bend, IN 46617
574-235-5888 ext. 3261

South Bend Brew Werks
216 S Michigan Avenue

Studebaker National Museum
201 Chapin Street
South Bend, IN

Visit Indiana