1. Crown Royal 400 at the Brickyard

July 26, 3 p.m. Between the Indy 500 and a July 4 Rolling Stones concert, IMS has had its fair share of fireworks this summer. But this year's Brickyard is sure to promise more. Hoosier native Jeff Gordon is retiring after the season, making this his last time racing at his home track. Will Gordon kiss the bricks for a record sixth time?

2. Release Fest II

July 24, 7 p.m. The ante has been upped, Indy. This year's release fest will feature NEW MUSIC from locals AMLION, No Pit Cherries, Brother O' Brother, Sugar Moon Rabbit and Brad Kleinschmidt. “To someone who hasn't been to an Indy show, I would say more than anything you're going to have a lot of fun," Shine Indy recording engineer Ryan Gibbons said.

Merry freakin' Christmas (in July)

One band making big waves in particular is Brother O' Brother, coming off their recent title-winning performance in at Birdy's Battle Royale finals in May. They've put the final touches on their second locally produced album Show Pony and they've been ready for Indianapolis to hear it for a long while.

Stream Brother O' Brother's album B-side

3. J. Cole, Big Sean, YG, Jeremih

July 26, 7 p.m. This is certifiably the No. 1 hip-hop concert of summer. If you’ve only got the cash for one show this weekend, make it this one. J. Cole and Big Sean both released albums earlier this year, Cole’s Forest Hills Drive and Sean’s Dark Sky Paradise. We highly recommend checking them out if for some unknown reason you haven't already. To put icing —and a cherry — on the cake, special guests YG and Jeremih join the bill. Klipsch is the hotspot this weekend.

4. FLOW Tour

July 25, 9:30 a.m. The FLOW Tour is flowboarding’s premier competitive tour, featuring some of the world’s best riders. What the hell is flowboarding, you ask? Yeah, we had the same question.

"The sport combines the progression, maneuvers, and skills from the core action sports of skateboarding, surfing, bodyboarding, and snowboarding and to a lessor extent, wakeboarding and skimboarding."

Sounds pretty badass to us.

5. Wildlike at Indy Film Festival

July 25, 7:30 p.m. Every good thing has to come to an end. The Indy Film Festival brought more than 100 movies to the big screen this year and we're sad to see it go. But not before one last hurrah. They'll be an after-party following this screening of Wildlike at the Toby. Big shouts to the organizers of this great festival.

Ed reviews Wildlike

6. The Great American Songbook Academy Finals

July 25, 7 p.m. During the Finals, all 40 of the finalists will perform onstage with Michael Feinstein, with the top ten performing two pieces each. At the end of the performance, one finalist will receive the title Songbook Youth Ambassador, thereby charged to carry the banner of the Great American Songbook, which includes multiple appearances, plus the chance to sing the national anthem at an NFL game. Nice little prize eh?

7. Leif Garret, Emperors And Elephants

July 25, 9 p.m. This show is for a great cause. Garrett has not only agreed to play a show, but invited his friends in the Chicago band Emperors and Elephants to perform as well. Family friend Jeff Willock will open the show, with all proceeds going to Shawn Robare.

Leif vs. Cancer

8. Chefs Night Off: "Steal Your Face"

July 26, 5:30, 7:30 p.m. The final dinner before off to the James Beard House. Four courses plus one collaborative dessert paired with Founders Beer and a hell of a good time! The chefs, per usual, represent some of the best talent in the city. Chefs: Andrew Whitmoyer of Thunderbird, John Herndon of Oakley’s Bistro/Black Market, Bryan Kanne of Pioneer and Allan Giannattasio of Shoefly.

9. Indians vs. Bats

July 24-26, times vary. The rain is supposed to hold off this weekend which means it's a perfect chance to get to the ballpark and root on your Indians. They welcome the rival Bats in for a three-game series. There's a fantastic fireworks show planned for Friday night's game.

10. Luke Bryan

July 24-25, 7 p.m. The Megaticket continues with country heartthrob Luke Bryan occupying the Klipsch stage for two nights. Hear favorites like “Play It Again,” “Crash My Party,” and “Rain Is A Good Thing” — which Indiana knows ohhhhhhh too well this summer. And in relevant news, Radio Disney is now Big Hits Country on 98.3 FM, yeehaw.


Engagement Editor

Former NUVO Engagement Editor. Proud cat dad. Fan of craft beer, parks and Indy's sports teams.