Indiana Black Expo’s 51st Summer Celebration series begins Thursday, July 7 and concludes Sunday, July 17.
For more than five decades, Summer Celebration has drawn celebrities, dignitaries and hundreds of thousands of visitors from across the country to Indianapolis each year.
Black Expo calls it a festival-style community engagement opportunity, celebrating Black history, culture and heritage.
This year there are over two dozen events spread across 11 days, ranging from musical performances, to entrepreneurial workshops, to minority health fairs.
“As a pillar of the state, IBE’s priority focus areas include economics equity, education equity, community empowerment and health equity,” according to IBE’s website. “All proceeds from Summer Celebration help support IBE’s year-round initiatives, including its Education Conference, Black Business Training Institute, Scholarship Fund, Performing Arts Academy, Community Learning Hub and more.”
Here’s what you need to know:
Ecumenical Service, a Christian celebration
July 7, 7 p.m., Grace Apostolic Church, 649 East 22nd Street, Free
Kicking off the 51st Summer Celebration is a worship service that includes pastor Jeffrey Johnson Sr. from Eastern Star Church and Bishop Kevin Harrison Sr. from Grace Apostolic Church. Musical performances feature a city-wide Ecumenical choir and international opera soprano Angela Brown.
IBE Business Conference
July 11-12, Indiana Convention Center
All business conference workshops are free and open to the public. Seating is first-come, first-served basis. Online registration is highly recommended.
City of Indianapolis Project Pipeline – 2022 Opportunities and Beyond
July 11, 10:30 a.m.-noon Indiana Convention Center, Room 231
Information about upcoming multimillion-dollar projects with contracting opportunities for minority, women, veteran and disability-owned businesses will be provided. Projects include partnerships with Indiana University Health, Indianapolis Airport Authority, Eskenazi Health, and Citizens Energy.
How to Exude Presence and Power – “Walk, Talk and Look Like a CEO”
July 11, 12:15-1:45 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Room 232
An interactive workshop including a panel of well-established business leaders who will share tips on business acumen and enterprise success. Topics include how to exude power, position and poise; leading with empathy to maximize staff output; becoming a strategic thinker and leader; attracting potential client interest; and networking tips.
More:How COVID-19 helped spur an ‘entrepreneurial explosion’ among Black Hoosiers
Diversifying Indy’s Procurement Ecosystem
July 11, 2 – 3:30 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Room 232
A conversation with the Business Equity for Indy Procurement Roundtable to increase the launch, growth and success rates of Black-owned enterprises. Presenters represent organizations including Indy Chamber, Cummins, Purdue University, and Sip & Share Wine.
Disparity Study – What Does It Mean, What’s Next?
July 11, 3:30-4 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Room 234, Free
This will be the public presentation of results gathered from a 2022 study between the Indiana Department of Transportation and the Indianapolis International Airport, in conjunction with BBC Research & Consulting.
XBE to DBE Workshop – What It Takes to Access Federal Contracts
July 12, 9:30-11 a.m., Indiana Convention Center, Room 231
A workshop to educate diverse companies on the federal Disadvantage Enterprise Program (DBE). The U.S. Department of Transportation’s DBE program is designed to remedy ongoing discrimination, according to the department’s website. The primary remedial goal of the program is to level the playing field by providing socially and economically disadvantaged small businesses a fair opportunity to compete for federally funded transportation contracts.
Also included, federal project pipeline opportunities from the Indianapolis Department of Metropolitan Development, Indianapolis Department of Public Works, Indy Go, Indianapolis Airport Authority, and Indiana Department of Transportation. Welcoming remarks by Vop Osili, city-county council president.
Finding State Contracting Opportunities
July 12, 11:15 a.m. -12:45 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Room 232
During this 90-minute workshop, IBE’s panel will show where and how to find contracting opportunities with the state. Each year, the state of Indiana awards millions of dollars in state contracts to meet the needs of government agencies. The information is publicly available; however, it may be overwhelming to try to find it. The purpose of this webinar is to simplify the process and get you started.
“Supplier Diversity Pulse Check! Higher Education Institutions’ Business Opportunities!”
July 12, 1:15-2:30 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Room 233
This workshop brings together decision-makers and procurement officers from the largest college and universities in the state. Hear about existing and upcoming multimillion-dollar projects and procurement opportunities from university representatives. Learn what it takes to tap into the current or future opportunities that exist. Find out who you should be approaching to do business with Indiana’s state universities.
Indiana University Education Conference
July 13, 8:30 a.m.-2:15 p.m., Virtual: visit indianablackexpo.com, Free
The Indiana University Education Conference provides professional development opportunities to educators and administrators in K-12 and higher education leading to equitable educational outcomes for students of color.
More:NAACP urges action from state to close achievement gaps.
Indiana Black & Minority Health Fair Seniors Night
July 14, 4-8 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Hall J and Hall K, Free for seniors
Educational material and resources regarding seniors and health will be provided.
Consumer Exhibits Open
July 15, 16 and 17, Noon-7 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Hall H and Hall I, Seniors only – Free
More than 250 corporate, government, education, nonprofit, community and retail vendors from across the country will be present.
Pacers Sports & Entertainment Corporate Luncheon
July 15, 11 a.m., Indiana Convention Center, Sagamore Ballroom, $70 per person, $700 per table
Awardees include Mike Woodson (Excellence in Sports), GEO Academies (Rev. Charles Williams Award) and Blair Underwood (Lifetime Screen Image Award).
The 51st Summer Celebration History Exhibit
July 15, Noon -7 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Hall I, Booth 301, Free
July 16, 10 a.m-9 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Hall I, Booth 301, Free
July 17, Noon-7 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Hall I, Booth 301, Free
An exhibit with photos documenting Summer Celebration’s five-decade history.
“Our Inspo” Teachers Exhibit: Where Learning and Imagination is Made Possible
July 15, Noon-7 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Hall I, Booth 233, Free
July 16, 10 a.m.-9 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Hall I, Booth 233, Free
July 17, Noon-7 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Hall I, Booth 233, Free
This multi-purpose visual and learning exhibit amplifies the transformative work that teachers do to impact the lives of students and houses learning stations for pre-K- and elementary-aged students. A Jeep Compass will be awarded to the selected distinguished educator in Indiana during IBE’s Education Conference. Children’s attendance is encouraged.
Cultural Arts Pavilion: Cultural Arts Gallery
July 15, Noon-7 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Hoosier Corridor Rooms 133-135, Free
July 16, 10 a.m.-9 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Hoosier Corridor Rooms 133-135, Free
July 17, Noon-7 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Hoosier Corridor Rooms 133-135, Free
The Cultural Arts Gallery is an exhibition that showcases the works of over a dozen Indianapolis arts institutions and local artists.
More:Black artists use NFTs to cash in on $40-billion market
The Art Speaks CAFÉ
July 15, Noon-7 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Rooms 136 and 137, Free
July 16, 10 a.m.-9 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Rooms 136 and 137, Free
July 17, Noon-7 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Rooms 136 and 137, Free
The Art Speaks CAFÉ includes an interactive area for local authors and artists to share insight on their works. By promoting the exploration, improvement, and advancement of the arts as a change-making force in society, the CAFÉ provides a venue for spoken word artists to share all forms of poetry. Sign up for a session of Yoga and Canvas or just relax, listen to music and enjoy a cup of coffee or tea.
The Black Wall Street Zone
July 15, Noon-7 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Hall H, Free
July 16, 10 a.m.-9 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Hall H, Free
July 17, Noon-7 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Hall H, Free
IBE celebrates the history behind the development of the original Black Wall Street, and what it means now and emphasizes the importance of patronizing Black businesses to generate wealth for Black communities. Black-owned businesses will be present, showcasing their goods and services.
Performing Arts Academy
July 15, Noon-7 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Booth 433, Hall I, Free
July 16, 10 a.m.-9 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Booth 433, Hall I, Free
July 17, 1-9 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Booth 433, Hall I, Free
IBE’s Performing Arts Academy will present an interactive exhibit, engaging with youth and families in dance competitions, music production, acting, videography and photography. Will include music and recording studio, acting studio, silent disco party, photo booth and more.
36th Annual Indiana Black & Minority Health Fair
July 15 and 16, 1-7 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Hall J and K, Free
July 17, Noon-6 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Hall J and K, Free
Attendees can receive free health screenings, additional health education information and more.
Music Heritage Festival
July 15, 6-11:30 p.m., American Legion Mall, General Admission: Free, VIP Seating: $75 in advance
A lineup of musical performers including Patti LaBelle and Monica.
Indiana Black Expo Midwest Invitational Boxing Showcase
July 16 and 17, 1-4 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Hall F, Free
The IBE Midwest Invitational Boxing Showcase is a dual competition between top amateur boxers from teams across Indiana, Ohio, Texas and Missouri. The dual competition will bring boxers from all weight classes.
Textures Institute of Cosmetology Hair Demonstrations
July 16 and 17, 1-7 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Hall H, Booth 1345, Free
Natural and straight hairstyle performances will be presented live for demonstration.
IBE’s Fashion Show
July 16, 4:30-6 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Entertainment Stage, Hall G, Free
Fashion show featuring designers: Witti by Codi; Roberta’s Kingdom Couture; Nikki Blaine Couture; Runway Diva; 28 Boutique; Jayde Ariel Designs; Chocolate Koko Brown; Rebellious Soul Collection; and Mike Sylla Time.
Live Performance by Alaina Renae
July 16, 6:15-8:15 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Entertainment Stage, Hall G, Free
Indiana native and national recording artist Alaina Renae will sing live.
All White Affair
July 16, 10 p.m.-3 a.m., Egyptian Ballroom at Old National Centre, General Admission: $50, VIP: $100, prices increase at the door
While wearing all white, attendees can dance, celebrate and listen to live performances by Chubb Rock and Kool Moe Dee.
Gospel Explosion Featuring
July 17, 4-7 p.m., Indiana Convention Center, Entertainment Stage, Hall G, Free
Performances featuring Andraye Speed & Company; Thomas & Situation; Demetrius West; New Direction Church and New Life Worship Center choirs.
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