Every Indiana town above a certain size has large corporations trying to muscle in on their homegrown businesses and industries. Corydon has CVS, Walgreens, and Walmart servicing anyone’s prescription needs, same as we do here in the big city. Their residents have one convenient pill-vending option we don’t: anytime they want, they can go hit Butt Drugs.
Previously on Midlife Crisis Crossover:
In addition to our annual road trips, my wife Anne and I have a twice-yearly tradition of spending our respective birthdays together traveling to some new place or attraction as a short-term road trip — partly as an excuse to spend time together on those most wondrous days, partly to explore areas we’ve never experienced before. We’re the Goldens. It’s who we are and what we do.
In October 2022 Anne turned 52. Indiana offers no shortage of tourist attractions for history aficionados like her. We’ve visited quite a few of those over the years, but this year we felt it was time to check off one of the Hoosier State’s biggest trivia answers: Corydon, our original state capital before Indianapolis…
South Dakota’s Wall Drug may be the most famous store in America to combine medicine and exuberant self-promotion, but Indiana has its own contender. Butt Drugs was opened in 1952 by William “Blackie” Butt, R.Ph., and remains family-owned to this day. His son Thomas followed his career path in 1971 and kept the place going after his passing. Today it’s in the hands of his daughter Katie and still going strong thanks to their trademark 35-cent cups of coffee, ample prescription clientele to keep up with those encroaching pharmacy chains elsewhere in town, and an extensive line of Butt Drugs products that lean into the family’s memorable and very real last name.
The Butts have proudly been leaning into the plenitude of potential pulchritudinous puns since long before such humor became Beavis and Butt-Head’s bread and butter. Townspeople and tourists alike cheerfully can’t resist grabbing themselves some Butt Drugs merchandise and sporting it everywhere they go. All that distinctive advertising certainly doesn’t hurt, though some dour dissenters may hate all those unsightly Butt plugs.
Butt Drugs is mentioned in so many Corydon tourism guides, and recommended by so many other tourists (including my own coworkers) that we couldn’t resist coming in and browsing for a bit before the museums and other businesses opened later in the day. I couldn’t resist picking up a memento for myself, a sample of their own trail mix recipe. The small paper bag contained a melange of cashews, pecans, almonds, and pumpkin seeds dressed with rosemary, oregano, sea salt and coconut oil.
Your move, Walgreens.
To be continued! Other chapters in this very special miniseries: