Both Indianapolis residents and visitors can expect to start July off with a bang, as Independence Day festivals and firework displays grace the area. But around the Fourth of July, the fun in Indy is just getting started. The entire month has a lot to offer in the form of concerts, film festivals, special exhibits, and microbrew gatherings. In fact, a mid-summer trip to Indianapolis is bound to have something for everyone in the family to enjoy, whether you're a jazz lover, a foodie, or a sports junkie.
Sit under the stars at Conner Prairie as the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra plays every Friday and Saturday night in July. Symphony on the Prairie is an Indianapolis tradition that combines beautiful summer evenings with crisp, clear music. In July, the concert series includes five shows: the popular Star-Spangled Symphony, Broadway Hits, The Little Mermaid, and Yacht Rock Review. Lawn seating, reserved seating, and premium parking can all be booked on the symphony's website prior to the event.
Every Friday night in July, the National Bank of Indianapolis hosts their Summer Night Film Series at the Newfields Outdoor Amphitheater. Over 20 movies are premiered throughout the season, each beginning after twilight (around 9:30 p.m.). Pack a picnic basket (free of alcoholic beverages), lawn chairs, and blankets and then kick back and enjoy classic films and modern blockbusters. Tickets and film series packages can be purchased online before the event.
Easily the largest event in July, the Indiana Black Expo Summer Celebration is a ten-day event that is jam-packed with activities. This expo—which brings thousands of visitors to the city of Indianapolis—promotes African-American culture, heritage, and community by hosting conferences, church services, children’s activities, and a large concert, all in the heart of downtown Indy.
An Indianapolis tradition returns to the Indianapolis Zoo each July with Animals and All That Jazz. Starting Fourth of July weekend and lasting for five consecutive weeks, zoo visitors can listen to the sounds of live jazz music each Thursday night while strolling through zoo exhibits. Take advantage of the warm weather and allow your kids to play in the zoo's Splash Park located right near the music venue. It's the perfect distraction for parents who want to enjoy the summer lineup. Animals and All That Jazz is included with regular zoo admission.
True foodies will enjoy traditional Middle Eastern fare at the Saint George Middle Eastern Festival in Indianapolis' sister city of St. Paul. Each July, the Saint George Antiochian Orthodox Church puts together a grand celebration that includes live entertainment, authentic cuisine, church tours, and a children's area complete with miniature golf, a ring toss, face painting, and slides. Admission is free and the pastries are the event's highlight.
Sample hundreds of beers from 100-plus microbreweries at the Historic Military Park at White River State Park in downtown Indianapolis. This 21-and-over festival features brews from Indiana and regional Midwest brewers alongside local food, shopping, and games. For an extra admission fee, you can grab an early bird ticket which gets you in to sample libations an hour before the general admission crowd. But don’t forget to bring your designated driver!
Catch WNBA superstars, the Indiana Fever, at several home games throughout the month of July. At the Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, you can watch the court-side action first hand. It's a great way to escape the mid-summer city heat. Catch a game at 4 p.m. or 7 p.m., respectively, and grab dinner nearby before or after the event. Book tickets ahead of time so you don't miss out.