IBE: 44th Summer Celebration draws thousands

WISH Photo

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – The Indiana Black Expo Summer Celebration has brought tens of thousands of people to Indianapolis since 1970. Saturday, IBE staff say the 2014 event has been one of its most successful years yet.

“You can go to boxing in the other room, we have celebrity basketball games, and I just came from a fashion show,” IBE President and CEO Tanya Bell said.

IBE’s Summer Celebration is not your typical expo.

“This is the largest expo I’ve ever done,” fashion designer and Project Runway star Korto Momolu said.

She made the trip to Indy to be a thread in the thick fabric of IBE.

“This is the largest black expo I’ve been to and it almost reminds me of the Essence [Music] Festival. It’s very grand and it’s just love,” Momlu said.

Hundreds of vendors and thousands of visitors make it all worth while, but there are others behind the scene that ensure safety and security.

“We put a plan in place after 2010 and we’ve worked the plan,” Bell said.

In 2010, 10 people were shot in three shootings during the Summer Celebration. Police say Shamus Patton was the gunman in two of the shootings involving 9 victims. He has since plead guilty to the shootings.

Bell said it goes beyond public safety.

“Make sure they do not violate curfew. Be on good behavior,” Bell said.

IMPD, the Marion County Sheriff’s Office and several other agencies are on board.

“The police department has joined in that partnership and shared in the experiences and we’ve very proud of where we’ve come as a city,” IMPD Officer Christopher Wilburn said.

Hundreds of uniformed police officers are in place at the convention center and throughout downtown Indy. For the fourth year in a row, no major incidents have occurred.

Now, the IBE staff says it’s time to start thinking about next year.

“It’s really recap time to see what went well and how do we tweak some things going into 2015,” Bell said.

Police will be enforcing curfew during the expo. That means no one under 17 can be out past 11 p.m.

IBE’s Summer Celebration continues Sunday, click here to see the events.

WISHTV.com provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s