Natalie is a founder and broker of Maywright Property Co., a fully-woman owned real estate brokerage serving clients and neighborhoods in central Indiana. Natalie is an Indianapolis native, a graduate of IUPUI, and has dedicated her career to knowing and serving this city and its people. Prior to entering real estate in 2017, Natalie spent a decade working in government and nonprofits.
Irvington is an eccentric and historic Indianapolis neighborhood.
From the moment you first step into the neighborhood, you can tell that Irvington is a special place to be. There’s an almost intangible feeling in the air—a sense of wonder that comes over you as you take in the winding streets, the towering trees, and the architecturally beautiful houses that line our city blocks. It’s a truly magical place to live, and I feel lucky to call it home.
The Irvington Historic District is a standout community on the Eastside of Indianapolis, filled with historic homes and diverse neighbors. Similar to Speedway or Broad Ripple, Irvington is only about five miles outside of downtown Indianapolis. So, it’s a pretty swift commute down to the office. And we’re situated right off of the I-465 loop, which gives you convenient access to the interstate.
For me, Irvington is practically a family legacy. The first house I ever lived in was in Irvington, and I grew up playing in the neighborhood. My parents, brother, grandmother, and an aunt all still live here, and my whole family went to Howe High School. Altogether, I’m a fifth-generation resident of Eastside Indianapolis, and there’s nowhere I’d rather be right now.
Well, technically, I live in Community Heights. (Irvington’s official boundary is 10th Street, and my house is about half a block past it.) But I didn’t even realize Community Heights existed when I first bought my house here.
At the time, I had just graduated college, and I couldn’t wait to move back home to Irvington. I was 22 years old, a brand-new homeowner, and eager to start giving back to the community that raised me. So, I immediately started volunteering with the Irvington Development Organization, and I’ve been a proud member of the community ever since!
Irvington is a protected historic neighborhood with beautifully preserved homes.
If you want to live in Irvington, you have to love and appreciate historic homes! Irvington is the largest protected historic district in Marion County, spanning over 500 acres of historically significant buildings.
The majority of the homes in Irvington proper were built in the early twentieth century, ranging from the late 1800s to the 1940s. So, you’ll find a lot of authentic wood houses built on solid brick foundations. And many of them still have their original hardwood floors and intricate architectural details on their century-old exteriors.
That’s certainly one thing about living in Irvington. You’re not going to see many guts-to-studs remodeling because everyone is committed to maintaining their home’s authentic heritage. If your home is in the designated historic area, any exterior changes must be approved by the city to ensure that its restoration—not renovation. But it’s a really cool experience to walk through the neighborhood, admire the beautiful architecture, and appreciate the hard work it took to preserve it.
Irvington offers affordable historic homes of all sizes.
The nice thing about Irvington in particular is that we have a wide variety of historic homes—both big and small. Indianapolis has quite a few historic neighborhoods across the city. But many of them have massive houses, ones that are so big they have to be divided into apartments.
In Irvington, we have a truly unique blend of buildings. There are still grand historic homes in the neighborhood, but we also have plenty of smaller, more flexible options. On my street, every house has a full brick or limestone exterior and a usable basement (which many historic homes don’t have). You can find the same thing in the heart of Irvington, and there are slightly newer homes at the northern end of the district with even nicer basement layouts.
Best of all, because Irvington homes come in all different sizes, our housing stock is flexible to your needs. There are houses affordable enough for a single person or a young couple, as well as homes that are large enough to support a growing family. That’s why so many people and families are aging in place here, and it’s amazing to see our community grow over time.
Irvington is the largest protected historic district in Indianapolis. The neighborhood is recognized by the National Register of Historic Places and the Indianapolis Historic Preservation Commission.
Butler University’s campus used to be in Irvington. Many of the old university buildings are still standing today.
The district is named after Washington Irving, the author of “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.” This spooky namesake is often featured during the annual Irvington Halloween Festival.
Our neighborhood is a diverse, eccentric community.
Here in Irvington, we are a really notorious neighborhood known for being diverse, welcoming, and just a little bit eccentric. Irvington is currently about 12,000 people large, but we’re still a really tight-knit community where everyone knows each other. When I go out to Black Acre Beer Garden or grab a bite at Jockamo Pizza, I know I’m going to run into people I know—and, of course, stop to say hello!
When you join our community, you’re really encouraged to come as you are, and that means you meet some of the most wonderfully strange and interesting people here. For example, there’s an Irvington Whiskey Lovers Group that I love to hang out with. But I swear, the group is so eclectic that it’s like you’re looking at a jury. There’s no clear connection to bond us all together, but somehow, we still talk for hours on end.
It’s funny, but our community really feels like a big, caring, sometimes dysfunctional family. Because Irvington is such an affordable place to live, we have residents of all ages, from all backgrounds. Some people are blue-collar workers, and some work at universities. Some people have lived here for decades, while others are first-time homeowners. But whoever you are, our neighborhood is always warm and accepting.
Irvington is also a great place to raise a family.
One of the best parts about living in a diverse neighborhood is that it’s a great place to raise your kids. Irvington is a community where your children can truly learn from their neighbors and experience different cultures right in their backyard. The overall vibe of Irvington is really genuine, so your kids can safely walk through the neighborhood and grow up with our community.
Irvington also has many different schools for your family to choose from. Our neighborhood is part of the Indianapolis Public Schools system, and we have a really nice IPS elementary school right in downtown Irvington. But if you are looking to go outside of public school, we also have Catholic parochial schools and community-focused charter schools. So, you can access a wide variety of educational options while also keeping your kids close to home!
Irvington is an easily walkable neighborhood.
Everybody wants to live in a walkable neighborhood these days, and I get it. There’s nothing better than being a short walk away from just about everything. Here in Irvington, we’re only a short drive from downtown Indianapolis, but you definitely don’t need a car to access all of our local amenities.
You can live anywhere in Irvington and easily walk to all of our local sites and shops. We have Ellenberger Park, an amazing urban park with a pool and a tennis court. That’s also where you can go for local concerts and our seasonal Farmers Market. We have a library and lots of nearby school options. We’ve got the Black Acre Tap Room for a night out and Jockamo Pizza for a night in. There’s an ice cream shop, a bakery, a tiki bar, a Starbucks, and just about anything you could need—all within a mile or so of your house.
- Irvington Preparatory Academy
- Washington Irving IPS
- Scecina Memorial High School
- Black Acre Brewing Co.
- Strange Bird Tiki Bar
- Jockamo Pizza
- Black Sheep Gifts
- James Dant
- George Thomas Florist
- Pennsy Trail
- Indianapolis Speedrome
- Pleasant Run Trail
- 18 Miles from Indianapolis Airport
- 25 Minute Drive
- Ellenberger Park
The Irvington Halloween Festival is a month-long holiday celebration.
Irvington often feels like a hidden gem in Indianapolis—a secret spot that the majority of people miss out on. But during the annual Halloween Festival, Irvington suddenly becomes the hottest spot in the city.
Every year, Irvington transforms into a massive Halloween town, decked out with spooky decorations to celebrate the spirit of the season. Throughout the month of October, visitors can brave the Irvington Ghost Tour through our haunted neighborhood. And the entire week leading up Halloween is filled with family-friendly events like a spooky organ concert, a slightly haunted puppet show, and ghost stories at the theater.
Then, on the night of Halloween, that’s when the crowds really come out. They join the zombie bike ride around the district. Teams of people design coffin-themed soapbox cars to compete in the annual derby race. And at the center of it all is the Irvington Halloween Street Fair. Hundreds of booths line the neighborhood streets, offering delicious food, handmade crafts, and activities for the whole family.
The festival has grown from a community event to a citywide spectacle.
The Irvington Halloween Festival first began all the way back in 1927 with a parade of local residents, a street dance in the neighborhood, and prizes for the best costumes. Back then, the festival was a community event with about 500 residents in attendance—the largest gathering in the neighborhood’s history. Now, it’s grown to welcome nearly 30,000 people from all over the state.
I’ve been attending the Irvington Halloween Festival since I was born, and it’s so crazy to watch how the neighborhood transforms for the season. Imagine your neighborhood—with the same space, the same streets—suddenly filled with thousands of people in full Halloween costumes.
I think one of my favorite things about being a resident here is that showing up to the festival is kind of like showing up to a school reunion. You see so many of your neighbors out and about, and you always feel like the cool kids on the block. It’s that knowledge that Irvington is our neighborhood, and these thousands of other people are here to appreciate what our community has to offer.
Take a stroll through Irvington’s beautiful streets.
In the month of October, when the weather’s nice and Halloween is right around the corner, that’s one of my favorite times to be in Irvington. I love to grab a coffee from one of the local shops and just walk a few miles through the neighborhood.
I sip my drink in the shade of all the trees, wave to my neighbors, and admire the history as I follow the winding streets. It’s a very purposeful layout, for all that it may seem unorganized. The roads were designed to be whimsical, to meander from one home to the next, and there’s something beautiful about that. Like the streets were made for a Saturday morning stroll.
I think it comes back to that intangible feeling, that gut sense that Irvington is unlike anywhere else. It’s hard to explain. I wish I had the words to describe how Irvington simply feels like home. But I invite you to come experience it for yourself. Come take a walk through Irvington. Once you do, you’ll understand. I think you’ll feel it, too.