If the summer of 2021 felt busy, then the summer of 2022 will feel like an explosion of events.
That’s thanks to a few factors. This year felt far enough from the pandemic’s onset to host previously canceled shows. And some arts and entertainment organizations that proceeded cautiously last year are unleashing more programming now.
Lucky us, because all of that adds up to a multitude of choices. Take your pick of concerts, movies, exhibits and outdoor fun. We’ll update this list throughout the summer to deliver even more ideas.
Things to do in Indianapolis
Symphony on the Prairie: Among Indianapolis’ longest-standing traditions is taking in a concert from the expansive lawn at Conner Prairie Amphitheater. The 2022 schedule includes the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, Melissa Etheridge and Three Dog Night, among other big names.
Mallow Run Winery’s Picnic Concert Series: These shows run all summer long with the invitation for people to spread out blankets, have a picnic and, yes, order some wine. On special weekends, Mallow Run releases its Strawberry Wine and Blueberry Cider to add an extra touch to the fun.
WonderRoad at Garfield Park: A new music festival hopes to take root in Indianapolis’ Garfield Park. Its inaugural weekend, June 11-12, includes local and national musical acts, art, food and drinks. The alt-rock heavy lineup includes headliners Vampire Weekend and Lord Huron.
“Monet & Friends Alive” at the Lume: The fourth floor of the Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields is 30,000 feet that, come July, will be filled with projections of the work of Claude Monet, Paul Cezanne, Camille Pissarro and Pierre-Auguste Renoir that move to a classical score. The artists will be the second big show to take over the Lume, whose immersive Vincent van Gogh exhibit became the most-attended exhibit in Newfields history, according to the museum.
Indiana State Fair returns July 29: The theme this year is “Celebrating Indiana’s Automotive Excellence,” and the fair will run through Aug. 21. Celebrity cars from movies and books, classic car collections with Hoosier-made vehicles will accompany the traditional favorite snacks and stalwart carnival rides.
AllIN Music and Arts Festival: Another new music festival will cap off the summer, as AllIN takes over the Indiana State Fairgrounds on Labor Day weekend, Sep. 3-4. The event, organized by veteran Indianapolis-area promoters, will include Daryl Hall & John Oates, Cage the Elephant, John Fogerty and Portugal. The Man.
$2 kids’ movies at Regal theaters: Six central Indiana movie theaters are offering $2 second-run children’s film screenings every Tuesday and Wednesday from May 31-Aug. 10. The showings typically start around noon.
Dinosphere at The Children’s Museum: The long-awaited Dinosphere revamp at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis opened in spring to considerable fanfare. Two 65-foot sauropods lead the new exhibit, the fruits of a $27.5 million excavation project in Wyoming.
Learn about cycling and champion Major Taylor: “Major Taylor: Fastest Cyclist in the World” at the Indiana State Museum digs into the Indianapolis athlete’s life, achievements and fight against racism. Along the way, you’ll learn about the turn-of-the-20th-century cycling boom and its effect on the Black community. Don’t sleep on the interactive activities, either: You can race Taylor and build your own bike.