Gen Con — Gaming
The biggest tabletop gaming convention in the country returns to Indianapolis this weekend.
Starting Thursday, more than 60,000 people will visit Indianapolis for the 55th Gen Con and take over the Indiana Convention Center and Lucas Oil Stadium downtown.
Through Sunday, gamers and pop culture fans can participate in nearly 15,000 events, including board games, card games, entertainment, and a wide variety of activities. According to Gen Con, some fan-favorite events at the 2022 Gen Con include Magic: The Gathering, Dungeons & Dragons, the costume contest, Pokémon, and the Film Festival.
Gen Con's opening ceremonies will take place Thursday at 9 a.m. in the Convention Center. All four days of Gen Con, Gen Con's Block Party will take over Georgia Street, featuring food trucks, drinks, and live performances.
Single-day tickets to Gen Con on Thursday and Friday are $65. Saturday tickets are $80, and Sunday tickets are $16. A 4-day pass is $125. Masks and proof of COVID-19 vaccination are required to enter.
Chicken & Beer Festival — 21+
EatHere's Indy Chicken & Beer Festival is Saturday on Monument Circle.
The one-day festival features chicken from local restaurants, chefs, and beer from local brewers. Attendees can expect live music, a hot wing eating contest, and other activities.
The event is from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. for adults 21 and older. Tickets are $35.
First Friday — Art
The First Friday of August is here, which means there is plenty of free art, entertainment, and community events to enjoy in the city.
Check out six new exhibits from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Harrison Center. "And | Now | This" is a collection of paintings by Willard Johnson, "Resilient" is a group photo exhibit, "Architecture of Light" by Tai Lipan is painted artwork on panel, a display of graphic score and interactive sound by Gabrielle Cerberville, Rob Funkhouser, and William Peacock, "Shadow Pass Mobile Community by Chad Campbell uses light and motors, and Charles Yang and Lesley Ackman's "Reimagining the Quotidian is a series of photographic work.
At the Circle City Industrial Complex, there are more than 20 gallery spaces to peruse in the 500,000-square-foot building from 6 to 9 p.m. There will also be live music in the Art Cafe.
In Fountain Square, The Murphy Arts building will be packed with art, antiques, music, and locally-made products by artisans from 6 to 10 p.m. Walk over to HI-FI for a free show starting at 7 p.m. featuring Goldpark and Thompson Springs.
Starting at 9 p.m., the First Friday After Party starts with a night of jazz music at McGowan Hall. A $6 donation, or tip, is asked to be given to the band to keep the music going.
Fountain Square Creatives Art Festival — Art
The Fountain Square Creatives Art Festival (FSCAF) is on Saturday, where, according to event organizers, "weirdos are welcomed."
The all-day affair includes a pop-up fashion show, street vending, art, and other local talent showcases. FSCAF is free to attend from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m.
BLACK: A Festival of Joy — Culture
On Sunday, a festival dedicated to fostering Black joy be held at the Taggart Riverside Park. From 12 p.m. to 9 p.m., the free festival will "spark a movement" based in music, according to event organizers.
Indiana State Fair Continues — Fair
The Indiana State Fair is rolling into its second weekend.
This weekend's free performances are by Travis Tritt, The Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band, Pat Benatar, and Neil Giraldo. Thursday is $3 Thursday where admission is $3, rides are $3, and each food stand has options for $3. Band Day is on Friday, and a Cheerleading Competition is on Saturday. You can get the full lineup of events at indianastatefair.com.
The fair opens at 9 a.m. and closes at 10 p.m. Wednesday and Sunday, and closes at 11 p.m. Thursday through Saturday. There is no entry into the State Fair after 8 p.m. daily. Tickets outside of Thursday are $14.
INDIANA STATE FAIR 2022: Everything you need to know
Art on Sneakers Competition — Art
The Art on Sneakers Competition returns for its second tournament on Saturday.
The sneaker art tournament consists of two separate competitions, one for professional artists and the other for high school creatives.
The event is hosted at Chase Near Eastside Legacy Center, where there will be an emcee, a DJ, food, vendors, and an outdoor lounge. It's free to attend and starts at 12:30 p.m. and runs til 7:30 p.m.
Vintage Movie Night — Film
Vintage Movie Night at the Garfield Park Arts Center on Saturday will feature the 1941 film "Never Give a Sucker an Even Break." Tickets are $5 and collected at the door. The movie's run time is two hours.
IndyPL Author Fair — Books
On Saturday, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., the Indianapolis Public Library will be hosting its all-ages Author Fair at the Central Library.
Attendees can meet and network with more than 40 authors, purchase signed books, and attend workshops. The fair is free to participate in and covers various genres.
Grapevine: Naptown’s Kickback for Local Jams — Music
Grapevine: Naptown's Kickback for Local Jams highlights Indy's hip-hop scene. From 5 to 10 p.m. on Friday, the free kickback at Flanner House and Cleo's Bodega includes music, art, and a small business fair.
Funny Friday — Comedy
On Friday, the Stand Up & Laugh Tour will be sliding through Indy for an event at the Vegas Lounge & Bar in Broad Ripple.
The lineup of comedians includes Jetta V, Marni P, and Sonya D. Doors open at 8 p.m. with a showtime start of 9 p.m. A single ticket is $25 and a "couples ticket" is $40.
Thursdays on the Mall — Film
Start the weekend early and head to the American Legion Mall for the final Thursday on the Mall of the season. The last free movie is "Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse."
WRTV Digital Reporter Shakkira Harris can be reached at email@example.com. You can follow her on Twitter, @shakkirasays.