Drivers, start your engines!
It’s time for the 104th annual Indianapolis 500, along with some new updates and guidelines to both the race and 500 Festival. The Indy 500 is known as the largest single-day sporting event in the world. When compared with famous events such as the Super Bowl and World Cup, being named the largest single-day sporting event in the world is no small feat.
The Indy 500 requires major advanced planning, preparation, time and effort. However, because our world has experienced the unexpected this year in the form of COVID-19, the Indy 500 team announced that the race will take place on August 23 this year, but without fans in the stands.
Indy 500 Race update and more
This year, the Indy 500 will have no spectators present at the race due to COVID-19. This will also include all practice, qualifying and Miller
Lite Carb Day activities. Race day this year will look a lot different for all racers, but they look forward to having the fans back in Indianapolis Motor Speedway on May 30, 2021!
News on the 500 Festival
Indiana Farm Bureau Insurance is a proud checkered flag member of the 500 Festival since 2007. After thorough deliberation, the 500 Festival concluded that the in-person festivities of the 500 Festival would be officially canceled. The following 500 Festival events will not occur in-person this year:
- 500 Kickoff to May, presented by STAR Bank
- Salesforce & Festival JPMorgan Chase 500 Festival Kids’ Day and Rookie Run
- 500 Festival Breakfast at the Brickyard, presented by Midwestern Engineers, Inc.
- 500 Festival Volunteer Appreciation Day, presented by Citizens Energy Group
- 500 Festival Memorial Service, presented by Rolls-Royce
- IPL 500 Festival Parade
- 500 Festival mini-mini
Although the in-person festivities are canceled, the 500 Festival team has created ways in which fans of the Indy 500 can still celebrate virtually. Some of the new virtual activities include:
- Inaugural Indianapolis 500 Mile Challenge and Indianapolis Freedom 100 Miles Challenge, presented by Clif Bar, benefiting the 500 Festival
- Virtual Salesforce & JPMorgan Chase 500 Festival Kids’ Day & Rookie Run
- A New Way to May
Information regarding the innovated, virtual events for the 500 Festival will continuously be updated on their website. Feel inspired and participate in these challenges and fun activities from the luxury of your own home!
At-home Indy 500 festivities
For those of you who will not attend in person this year, this does not mean that August 23 will be a day without racing and fun. Make your own Indy 500 celebration in the comfort of your own home! The race will be aired on NBC for viewers to watch. The ways in which you, your friends and family can celebrate the 104th running of the Indianapolis 500 are endless. Here are just a few creative ideas you could try:
- Have a race of your own. Time to get out your lawnmower and put it to good use—other than mowing the lawn, of course. Prior to August 23 let your grass grow as much as possible and then the morning of the race, create your own track by mowing out the track itself on the lawn. Once complete, watch as your kids, dogs and anyone else who wants to take part in race day run around the homemade grass track! Although there won’t be screaming crowds and roaring engines, this backyard racetrack is guaranteed to make everyone happy.
- Super Bowl party? More like Indy 500 party. Time to get your crock-pot out of its hiding place. It’s time for an Indy 500 party. Get your family together and maybe even coordinate with some neighbors to do the same and throw an Indy 500 party while following safety precautions. Filled with appetizers, board games, card games, appetizers, fun and did someone say appetizers? We all know we wish we could eat the “Super Bowl party meal” more than once a year and August 23 is your chance to do just that. Get out your buffalo chicken dip ingredients and get cooking!
- Cookout time. Maybe watching the Indy 500 isn’t your “cup of tea,” but it is loved by other members of your family. Well, here is a compromise. Have a cookout outside while having the race on inside. If you don’t necessarily want to watch the race, instead enjoy the sunshine and eat your meal outside. Try putting the race on the big screen and eat your freshly grilled hamburger in the comfort of your living room.
- Do 500 of something. If you don’t know already, the Indy 500 is a race between 33 drivers that race cars around a 2.5-mile track 200 times, which equals 500 miles! In the spirit of the 104th annual Indy 500, it is your turn to do something 500 times! Maybe you run 500 meters or eat 500 pretzels or write your name 500 times, see how creative you can get and do it! See what you can come up with and if you succeed, make sure to post your accomplishment on social media and use the hashtag, #Idid500forIndy.
No matter if you choose to commemorate the Indy 500 this year or not, make August 23 a day to spend time with family and friends, while social distancing, and have a great Sunday. Boogity, boogity, boogity – let’s go racing!