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11th Annual Asian Fest, June 24, 2018

May 7, 2018 1 comment
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Image provided by the Asian Fest and used with written permission.

By Young Hee Yedinak
On behalf of the Asian Fest

Instead of flying 18 hours to travel to Asia, Hoosiers can experience the many dimensions of Asia in their own backyard. The 11th annual Asian Fest is set for Sunday, June 24, 2018, 12-5 PM, at the Indiana State Museum in downtown Indianapolis. ADMISSION IS FREE.

Each year, Asian Fest spotlights one Asian country, and this year, Burma/Myanmar will take center stage. Indiana has one of the largest Burmese immigrant populations in the U.S. This is an opportunity to learn about this fascinating country and our new neighbors in the Hoosier state. More information at http://www.aaalliance.org/asian-fest

Festival highlights include:
· Entertaining cultural performances from China, India, Japan, Burma/Myanmar and more
· Cultural Discovery of Featured Country – BURMA / MYANMAR
· Traditional Burmese costume fashion show
· Asian cuisine from local restaurants
· Children’s activities
· Asian communities booths
· Asian American Alliance scholarship presentation

Festival goers will receive $5 reduced event parking in the White River State Parks garage.

The 2018 Asian Fest is made possible by these generous sponsors:

Title Sponsors: Barnes and Thornburg, Indianapolis Power & Light, IUPUI

Event Sponsors: Morgan Stanley, Honda Manufacturing of Indiana, Purdue University Asian American & Asian Resource and Cultural Center, Roche, International Center, Indianapolis Foundation, Christel DeHaan Family Foundation

Event Partner: Burmese American Community Institute (BACI)

In-Kind Sponsors: Indiana State Museum, Indy Asian American Times, Asian American Today, Indy Korea

Asian Fest is hosted by Asian American Alliance, Inc., a local, nonprofit, pan-Asian organization whose mission is to empower Asian Americans to serve and lead in businesses and communities. Visit www.aaalliance.orgto learn more.

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Celebrities Announced for @500festival Parade, May 26, 2018

April 27, 2018 Leave a comment
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500 Festival Parade in downtown Indianapolis, Indiana
Photo provided by the 500 Festival and used with written permission.

By Sabrina List
500 Festival

Hollywood stars, musicians, and Hoosier heroes will take to the streets of downtown Indianapolis for the 62nd IPL 500 Festival Parade, scheduled for Saturday, May 26, 2018.

The producers and inspiration of the movie, Rudy, which celebrates its 25th anniversary; Oscar winner, Doug Jones; members of the cast of the movie 12 Strong, joined by Special Forces team members of Task Force Dagger 595, and numerous others are among the first group of announced celebrities and VIPs scheduled to appear in the IPL 500 Festival Parade.

Inspirational advocates for unified sports, Abby Abel and Mitch Bonar will serve as Grand Marshals of the 2018 IPL 500 Festival Parade.

Grammy-winning hip-hop violinist, Miri Ben-Ari and technology dance group, iLuminate will headline the Parade’s opening production.

Also appearing will be the 33 starting drivers of the 102nd running of the Indianapolis 500®, presented by PennGrade Motor Oil.

Tickets for the 2018 IPL 500 Festival Parade are available for purchase at 500festival.com/tickets/.

2018 marks the 25th anniversary of the motion picture, Rudy, named one of AFI’s most inspiring movies. To commemorate the milestone, the director and screenwriter of the famous movie and the inspiration behind the film will all join the IPL 500 Festival Parade lineup. 

  • Daniel “Rudy” Ruettiger: Daniel “Rudy” Ruettiger never gave up on his dream to play football at the University of Notre Dame. The biographical film, Rudy, depicts his merciless journey to football stardom, which defined his “yes I can” mentality. A motivational speaker, Rudy shares his passionate and heartfelt story with others.
  • David Anspaugh: Emmy and Golden Globe-winning director, David Anspaugh was the backbone behind the creation of the inspiration film, Rudy, as well as another beloved sports drama, Hoosiers. A native of Decatur, Indiana, and graduate of Indiana University, Anspaugh’s career also included directing the television shows, Hill Street Blues, St. Elsewhere and Miami Vice.
  • Angelo Pizzo: A movie mogul who grew up in Bloomington, Indiana, Angelo Pizzo is famed for writing and producing Rudy as well asHoosiers. Pizzo now resides in Indiana with his family.

12 Strong | Task Force Dagger 595: Cast members from the movie 12 Strong, will be joined by real-life members of Task Force Dagger 595, the first Special Forces Team deployed to Afghanistan after 9/11 and basis of the movie. The list of the brave Green Beret Special Forces members joining this year’s Parade includes: Mark Nutsch, Will Summers, Scott Neil, and Chris Spence.Cast members appearing in the IPL 500 Festival Parade include:

  • Geoff Stults: Actor Geoff Stults played the character Sean Coffers in the movie, 12 Strong. He also acted in the long running TV show,7th Heaven, as well as The Odd Couple and Grace and Frankie.
  • Kenny Sheard: After 12+ years in the U.S. Navy, Kenny Sheard transitioned to the reserves and focused on developing skills that would become an essential foundation for his career as an actor and stuntman. Sheared played the character Bill Bennett in 12 Strong. He’s worked in numerous other high-profile films and television series including Transformers: Age of Extinction, 13 Hours and John Wick: Chapter 2.

Doug Jones: Actor Doug Jones captured the attention of critics with his portrayal of Amphibian Man, the creature at the center of the film, The Shape of Water, an Oscar-winner for Best Motion Picture. Jones’ 30+ year career includes more than 150 productions in film and TV, including playing the role of The Fawn in Pan’s Labyrinth, the title character in Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, Abe Sapien in Hellboy, Billy Butcherson in Hocus Pocus, as well as his current starring role as Saru in the CBS All Access series, Star Trek: Discovery. Jones is a graduate of Bishop Chatard High School in Indianapolis and a Ball State University alum.

Jim Cornelison: Best known as the powerful and exclusive voice behind “The Star-Spangled Banner” at Chicago Blackhawks’ home games, Jim Cornelison thrilled hundreds of thousands of fans with his performance of “Back Home Again in Indiana” at the 101st Running of the Indianapolis 500. He’ll appear in the IPL 500 Festival Parade before performing the iconic song once again at the 102nd Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil.

Zachary Spicer: Zachary Spicer is an actor, producer, and the CEO of Pigasus Pictures. He recently starred in the movie The Good Catholic. He’s also known for his role in the Netflix Original Series Master of None, and has appeared in television series including, Gotham, Blue Bloods, and Law & Order SVU. Spicer is an Indiana native and an Indiana University alum.

John Armstrong: John Armstrong is an actor, producer, and COO of Pigasus Pictures, an Indiana-based film production company. A native of Indiana and Indiana University alum, Armstrong produced the movie The Good Catholic, starring Danny Glover and John McGinley as well as the upcoming feature titled, Ms. White Light, starring Tony Award-winning actress Judith Light.

Kristin and Danny Adams: Kristin and Danny Adams are YouTube sensations whose online videos have amassed more than 300 million views. They became famous after a funny lip-sync video went viral in 2016. Kristin, a former television host, and Danny, a former actor, comedian and stunt man, met in Los Angeles before returning to Danny’s hometown of Indianapolis in 2008.

2018 IPL 500 Festival Parade Headline Entertainment

Miri Ben-Ari: Miri Ben-Ari is a Grammy Award-Winning violinist, producer, and humanitarian, a “UN Goodwill Ambassador of Music” to the United Nations. Originally from Israel, she has created her own unique music; a revolutionary fusion of classical, Hip-Hop, soul and dance. A classically trained violinist who once studied under the late classical master Isaac Stern, Ben-Ari has helped sell millions of records by collaborating with other Grammy award-winning artists such as Kanye West, Jay Z, Wyclef Jean, Alicia Keys, Wynton Marsalis, Britney Spears, Maroon 5, Akon, Patti Labelle, Brandy, Donna Summer, Janet Jackson, John Legend, Aventura, and Armin Van Buuren.

iLuminate: iLuminate is an entertainment technology dance group that combines state-of-the-art technology with electrifying entertainers who perform in the dark to create the ultimate performing arts experience. The group’s lighting effects and choreographed performances take viewers on an exhilarating ride. Once called “the best new act in America” during their run on America’s Got Talent, they’ve also performed alongside Grammy-winning superstars like Christina Aguilera, The Black Eyed Peas, David Guetta, and more. The group has been featured on Dancing with the Stars, X Factor, American Music Awards, MTV, BET, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and more. 

One of the original 500 Festival events, the IPL 500 Festival Parade is one of the nation’s largest, most respected parades, consistently earning national acclaim alongside the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade and the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. More than 300,000 people will line the streets of downtown Indianapolis to experience the larger-than-life floats, giant helium balloons, celebrities, award-winning bands, and all 33 drivers competing in the 102nd running of the Indy 500.

The 2018 IPL 500 Festival Parade will be themed, Illuminate. Innovate. Indianapolis. Every May, the world turns its focus on Indianapolis. Beaming with civic pride and radiating a racing spirit, together we can present a city that shines bright at the forefront of a cutting edge world. This May, our community and guests will come together to illuminate the history, tradition, and sacrifices of our heroes on Memorial Day Weekend, while looking forward and saluting Indy’s commitment to innovate the world around us. So let’s turn the lights up high, point the camera on Indy, and take action for the 102nd Running of the Indy 500. Illuminate. Innovate. Indianapolis.   

The 2018 IPL 500 Festival Parade will take place on Saturday, May 26, 2018. Parade festivities will start at 11:45 am ET in downtown Indianapolis. IPL 500 Festival Parade tickets start at $10 and can be purchased at 500festival.com/tickets, by calling (317) 614-6400, or at the 500 Festival Ticket Office, located at 21 Virginia Ave. in Downtown Indianapolis. The Ticket Office is open on weekdays from 8:30 am – 5:00 pm.

The IPL 500 Festival Parade will be broadcast nationally on NBC Sports and to the Indianapolis market on WTHR, Channel 13. For more information about the IPL 500 Festival Parade, please visit 500festival.com/parade or search #IPL500Parade on social media.

Jay County Fiber Arts Festival, Mar. 9-10, 2018 @JayCoTourism

February 21, 2018 Leave a comment
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Jay Community Center in downtown Portland, Indiana.
AroundIndy.com staff photo, (c) 2017, all rights reserved.

By Blake Watson
Jay County Visitor & Tourism Bureau

The Jay County Fiber Arts Festival is scheduled for Mar. 9-10, 2018: Friday 10 AM to 5 PM, and Saturday, 9 AM to 4 PM. The Fiber Arts Festival, which features classes, fiber artists, food, vendors and demonstrations, is located at the Jay Community Center, 115 E. Water St., in Portland, Indiana.

Here’s a little bit about Dick Reel, Fiber Fest Spooner and Wood Working Demonstrator:

Musicians have long used a variety of instruments to entertain crowds for centuries. One of the most interesting and storied instruments used involves spoons.

American folk music has a rich history, which includes musicians using spoons that are sometimes accompanied by jugs and washboards.

The method as to how spoons are played is simple, as it involves the musician setting a rhythm and hitting the spoons against one’s knee and palm of hand.

Every year, during the second weekend of March, Dick Reel entertains a multitude of visitors who attend the Jay County Fiber Arts Festival in Portland, Indiana.

Reel is often dressed in his signature attire of suspenders and a long sleeve-shirt. Attendees of the Fiber Arts Festival are often scene marveling at Reel’s talents of creating music with spoons.

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Dick Reel. Photo provided by Jay County VTB and used with written permission.

It is a known fact that many of those who attend the Fiber Arts Festival always make it a special priority to visit with Reel and witness his playing of spoons.

Reel’s hobbies involve woodworking with various varieties of wood. He also enjoys demonstrating his woodworking skills, as he has done for several years at the Jay County Fiber Arts Festival.

Woodworking accomplishments of Reel involves his philanthropic donation of his specialty crafted wooden benches to the Laporte County 4-H Auction and the Purdue Agriculture Alumni. Over the years, Reel’s donated, crafted wooden items have raised over $15,000.

Notable awards that Reel has been the recipient of includes: Bob Hiler Outstanding Alumni Leadership Award, John P. Daley Jaycees Community Leadership Award, LaPorte County Historical Society Historian of the Year Award and Purdue Alumni Certificate of Distension Award.

Reel’s accomplishments also include the Pioneer Land, which he helped develop that is found at the Laporte County, Indiana Fairgrounds.

Organizers of the Jay County Fiber Arts Festival are honored to have such a remarkable and talented musician and woodworker participate at the event.

Mark your calendars now to attend and check out all the offerings, including Reel’s wooden demonstrations and playing of spoons.

For more information about this event, please visit http://www.visitjaycounty.com/fiberfest or contact Fiber Arts Festival organizers directly at 260-726-3366.

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Indiana Black Expo Summer Celebration Concerts, July 20-21, 2018 @inblackexpo

February 18, 2018 Leave a comment

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Indiana Black Expo Press Release

INDIANAPOLIS, IN – Indiana Black Expo, Inc. recently announced its weekend lineup for the 48th Summer Celebration featuring a new New Jack Swing concert on the entertainment stage in the free exhibition hall inside the Indiana Convention Center.

Grammy Award winning singer, song writer and Broadway actress Stephanie Mills, R&B Group After 7 and British R&B sensation “Loose Ends will perform during the Music Heritage Festival l Free Outdoor Concert at the American Legion Mall on Friday, July 20, 2018.

IBE has added another free concert for attendees to enjoy inside the free exhibition hall on Saturday July 21st. Titled the New Jack Swing concert, exhibit hall attendees will see performances from three-time Grammy nominated “Al B. Sure, chart topping vocalist “Christopher Williams” and “Big Bub of the group “Today.”

Later on Saturday at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Summer Celebration attendees will enjoy a concert featuring R&B group Maze and Frankie Beverly, Grammy winning singer, song writer Brandy and the creator of New Jack Swing Teddy Riley & Blackstreet.

Tickets for Saturday’s concert go on sale Monday, February 19, 2018 and are available at the Indiana Black Expo office located at 3145 North Meridian Street or Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, at all Ticket Master outlets, ticketmaster.com — or by visiting IBE’s website at http://indianablackexpo.com or by calling 317.923.3037.

The 48th Annual Indiana Black Expo Summer Celebration runs from July 12 – 22, 2018 and will impact over 200,000 visitors.

 

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Eagles over Monroe returns to Fairfax SRA, Jan. 26-28, 2018

December 13, 2017 1 comment
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An American Bald Eagle photographed in Indiana.
Photo credit: Bob Burchfield, (c) 2016, all rights reserved.

Indiana DNR Press Release

Eagles over Monroe will celebrate Indiana’s relationship with our national bird through educational programs and birdwatching opportunities at Fairfax State Recreation Area, Jan. 26-28, 2018.

Monroe Lake is hosting the event in conjunction with the Fourwinds Lakeside Inn and Visit Bloomington. Advance registration, full program details, and lodging and dining information are available at visitbloomington.com/eaglesovermonroe.

While eagles are the event headliners, programs will explore the lives of other bird species, too.

Eagles over Monroe kicks off the evening of Friday, Jan. 26 with presentations about saw whet owl research and the biodiversity of Monroe Lake.

Saturday, Jan. 27, offers opportunities to learn about the eagle restoration program, how to bird by impression, the evolution of dinosaurs into birds, and the whooping crane recovery story.

During lunch, participants can see live raptors from the Dwight Chamberlain Raptor Center and make avian-themed crafts. A formal presentation later in the day will feature live raptors from the Indiana Raptor Center.

A self-guided driving tour around the lake on Saturday afternoon offers attendees a chance to see eagles and other birds in the wild. Stops will be manned by local birders and their spotting scopes.

James Kawlewski, outreach program assistant for the International Crane Foundation, will present Saturday evening’s keynote address, “Raptors and Cranes, An Interconnected Wonder.”

Saturday evening concludes with avian-themed bingo. The event wraps up on the morning of Sunday, Jan. 27 with photography and birding hikes.

Advance registration is $15 for adults (ages 16 and older) and $10 for kids (ages 6 to 15) and includes all of the scheduled event programs and activities.

Walk-up registration will also be available at the Fourwinds Lakeside Inn from 4 to 8 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 26, and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 27. Walk-up costs are $20 for adults and $15 for kids.

The Fourwinds Lakeside Inn is offering a special rate of $79 per night for a lakeside room to event attendees. Dining specials will also be available throughout the weekend.

Fairfax State Recreation Area (stateparks.IN.gov/2954.htm) is located at 9301 S. Fairfax Road, Bloomington.

To view all DNR news releases, please see dnr.IN.gov.