Macaques on the move in Indy, ghost hunts in Ohio and more Midwest happenings

Zuki and Willow are a couple of the macaques visitors can see at the Indianapolis Zoo.
Zuki and Willow are a couple of the macaques visitors can see at the Indianapolis Zoo.
(Indianapolis Zoo )
Chicago Tribune

Here are some of the more interesting events, deals, websites and other travel tidbits that have come across our desk recently:

♦The Indianapolis Zoo’s macaques are getting a new home, and it opens Memorial Day weekend, May 26. Sharing One World: Long-Tailed Macaques will be in the zoo’s Oceans Area — an ideal location for one of the best primate swimmers; the long-tailed variety are the only macaques that swim throughout their life. The exhibit will give visitors the chance to see them diving into water.

♦If you’d like to try hunting ghosts, the Ohio State Reformatory in Mansfield has you covered. In operation from 1896 to 1990, the reformatory draws people from all over the world for its ghost hunts. On May 19 and Sept. 1, a new offering will be ghost-hunting classes led by an expert in paranormal investigations. There will be day classes, followed by a private nighttime ghost hunt. These are apt to sell out, so register quickly to avoid disappointment.

♦Galesburg, Ill., celebrates its 41st annual Railroad Days festival June 21-24. The 20th Century Railroad Club is offering an appropriate way to visit the festival with a round-trip train ride from Chicago to Galesburg on June 23. Boarding will also be possible at LaGrange Road, Naperville and Plano. Cost is $60 for adults and $30 for children. Details on the trip are at, and Railroad Days information is at


♦Professional kite fliers will be flying stunt and show kites at the 17th annual Outta Sight Kite Flight on June 2-3 in Kenosha, Wis. There will be kite-flying lessons and kite-making workshops, and kites and food will be available for purchase.

♦The Cinema Systers Film Festival, billed as the only all-lesbian film festival in the U.S., will be May 25-27 in Paducah, Ky. In addition to screening films of all genres made by lesbian artists, there will be workshops and Q&A sessions with filmmakers.

♦The John Wayne Birthday Celebration will be May 25-26 In Winterset, Iowa. Headlining the event will be Western performer Red Steagall. Among weekend activities will be screening of Wayne classics “Red River” and “Big Jake,” a country barn dance, horse parade and benefit dinner and auction of Wayne memorabilia.

♦Waterfall and canyon tours are held each Monday and Saturday through May in Starved Rock State Park near Utica, Ill. The guided walks start at Starved Rock Lodge and include lunch. Reservations are recommended. 815-220-7386,

♦Detroit’s popular Eastern Market will host the Michigan Wine & Cider Festival on May 24. More than 40 Michigan vintners and cideries will be offering samples. Food trucks will also be on hand. Tickets may be purchased online or at the gate if any remain.

♦REI Adventures is offering a limited-time reduction on the price of its Texas Hiking – Big Bend National Park & Beyond tour. The seven-day/six-night adventure is usually priced at $3,599 per person, double occupancy for REI members (an REI lifetime membership is just $20). But, if you book from May 18-28 you can take off $600. The deal and departure dates will be live on the website on May 18. 800-622-2236,

♦Yellowstone Forever, the official education entity for Yellowstone National Park, offers a variety of field seminars during the summer and fall. Programs are based at the Lamar Buffalo Ranch or the Overlook Field Campus near the park’s north entrance in Gardiner, Mont., The programs explore and interpret the park’s wildlife and natural wonders.

♦Untours, which specializes in packages in foreign destinations that include apartment rental and a means of transportation, is adding Portugal to its roster of destinations. Sign up to get details of the upcoming offerings at


♦New Orleans certainly has no lack of booze and food, but that doesn’t stop it from having a New Orleans Wine & Food Experience from May 23-27. More than 250 wineries typically take part.

Deals and websites listed here have been checked for availability as of press time. Listings are not endorsements. Send tips at least a month in advance to

Phil Marty is a freelancer.

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