Carter’s Antique Toy Museum: Revisit Your Childhood in Zionsville

Have you ever felt that the world is passing you by, that there’s not enough fun or color in your office, your car, or your life? Are the kids bored with television and board games? Well, don’t worry. Your salvation is here, in the form of Carter’s Antique Toy Museum, just a stone’s throw away from Indianapolis in Zionsville, Indiana.

If you have a free afternoon and enjoy a good dose of nostalgia, you should take the fifteen minute drive to Zionsville to visit one of the most unique museums in Indianapolis. Spanning three floors and boasting an antique shop and gift shop, along with an old-time ice cream parlor, Carter’s is the perfect place for Indianapolis kids of all ages to explore a piece of Zionsville history.

Booths at Carter's Antique Toy Museum Booths at Carter’s Antique Toy Museum

As you enter the front door of this huge brick and teal covered building, you will be delighted by the bright colors and fond memories that await you inside. The museum itself has rows upon rows of glass display cases, all housing antique toys and collectibles in top-notch condition, including dolls, rocking horses, model machines, and much more. It represents a great piece of Indianapolis history, and you may even recognize some favorites that you used to play with!

Chicago coins band box at Carter's Antique Toy MuseumChicago coins band box at Carter’s Antique Toy Museum

While your own children may be temporarily entranced by the almost limitless toy museum, once they get bored with looking they can actually experience the history of children’s entertainment. One whole floor of the museum is dedicated to antique arcade games and even ride-on toys, including a colorful merry-go-round. You won’t know where to start, because the toys stretch as far as the eye can see. There’s even a fully operational bumper car arena where you can happily revisit all those carnivals of your childhood. This floor is one of the main reasons Carter’s Antique Toy Museum is one of the most unique Zionsville attractions.

Coca-Cola Table at Carter's in Zionsville, INCoca-Cola Table at Carter’s in Zionsville, IN

After all the sights to see and rides to ride, your sweet tooth is sure to be aching. Carter’s Antique Toy Museum offers one of the most unique experiences in Indianapolis restaurants: the Old Tyme Soda Shop. The Soda Shop has classic diner food like hamburgers and french fries. It also offers top-notch milkshakes and all the other amenities you’d expect in a retro soda shop, like hot-fudge sundaes and snack food. The interior of the restaurant fits perfectly with the rest of the museum: bright neon lights and signs adorn the walls and trim, coin-op jukeboxes are present at every table, and it is the perfect place to sit back and relive all the sights and sounds of the day.

Diner counter at Carter's in Zionsville, INDiner counter at Carter’s in Zionsville, IN

The combination of food and fun makes Carter’s Antique Toy Museum one of many great things to do in Indianapolis and the surrounding area. Call in advance to set up a party. Group rates are available. Rates per person are $7 for adults, $6 for seniors, and $4 for children. Carter’s is open Tues-Sat, 11:00am-5:00pm. Don’t forget to take a picture with one of the life-sized cartoon characters! For pictures and more information, please visit the official museum website.

Ice Cream freezer at Carter's in Zionsville, INIce Cream freezer at Carter’s in Zionsville, IN

Jukebox at Carter's in Zionsville, INJukebox at Carter’s in Zionsville, IN

Mini table jukebox at Carter's in Zionsville, INMini table jukebox at Carter’s in Zionsville, IN

Carter’s Antique Toy Museum
91 S Main St
Zionsville, IN 46077