The mission of the 500 Festival is to advocate and celebrate the spirit, heritage and legacy of the Indianapolis 500®. Through social, cultural and educational events and programs, the 500 Festival enhances the quality of life for all citizens of our communities.
National in Scope, Homegrown in Spirit
Indianapolis is largely defined by the historic Indianapolis 500 and the grand community festival that surrounds it. With nearly 50 annual events and programs, the 500 Festival fuels the entire magical month of May.
Decades of Community Service
By offering a wide variety of cultural, educational and social events, the 500 Festival touches more than 500,000 people annually…and in such meaningful ways. Its signature events – like the IPL 500 Festival Parade and OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon – connect the community in large proportions…and showcase our city on a world stage.
Quality of Life
The Festival delivers community spirit, volunteerism, participation, inclusion, entertainment, social connecting, business networking and even health initiatives.
National Media Exposure and Tourism Driver
As one of the nation’s largest festivals, 500 Festival events draw both exposure and people. Families from across the globe attend the IPL 500 Festival Parade, which is nationally-televised on NBC Sports Network. The Parade is one of the nation’s three largest, along the likes of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and Pasadena Tournament of Roses. One of only a few nationally televised parades, it attracts an estimated 300,000 curbside spectators – locals and tourists alike.
With 35,000 participants, The Mini is the nation’s largest half-marathon…and, it’s even larger than the famed Boston Marathon. The OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon alone draws more than 20,000 participants from outside greater Indianapolis, becoming more and more of a valuable tourism and economic impact driver. By getting nearly 40,000 moving…the Mini and 5k are very likely the state’s largest health initiatives…getting people focused on their health and well-being.
It’s Good Business
The 500 Festival is a self-funded, not-for-profit organization deriving its revenue streams from ticket sales, event registrations, sponsorship and corporate memberships. Hundreds of local, regional and national companies participate in a variety of ways. And it works.
The 500 Festival & Indianapolis 500 Education Program, presented by Indiana University Health teaches Indiana fourth-graders the history of the 500 Festival, the Indianapolis 500 and Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Approximately 25,000 students participate annually…and already, more than 175,000 students have gone through the classroom curriculum and more than 71,000 have taken advantage of study trips at the famed oval.
The 500 Festival has a large workforce…with more than 7,000 volunteers who bless the Festival with their time and devotion annually.
- Participant Information
- Course Entertainment
- Post Race Party
- Race History
- Other Events
- Annual Theme