Our top honors

The 500 Festival was presented with 12 industry honors during the 2016 IFEA/Haas & Wilkerson Pinnacle Awards Ceremony held in Tucson, Arizona on September 27.

“We are proud to be recognized as an organization that produces highly distinguished events and programs,” said Bob Bryant, president and CEO, 500 Festival. “To be honored from within the industry by our peers is a true compliment to the staff, volunteers, and the Indianapolis community that work year-round to ensure that we fulfill our mission to produce life-enriching events and programs.”

Each year, the International Festivals and Events Association recognizes the outstanding accomplishments and first-class promotional, operational, and community outreach programs and materials produced by festivals and events around the world during a 3 day convention, expo & retreat. Awards were distributed in 68 different categories at this year’s Pinnacle Awards Ceremony.

The 500 Festival earned four gold awards, four silver awards, and four bronze awards in the industry competition, which draws entries from organizations such as the Kentucky Derby Festival, the National Cherry Blossom Festival, and major events across Europe, Asia, and Australia.

The 500 Festival received the following IFEA/Haas & Wilkerson Pinnacle Awards in 2016:


Gold Pinnacle Awards:

  • Best New Attendee Service – OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon VIP Experience
  • Best Educational Program – 500 Festival & Indianapolis 500 Education Program, presented by Indiana University Health
  • Best Miscellaneous Printed Materials – Trading Cards provided to students participating in the 500 Festival & Indy 500 Education Program, presented by Indiana University Health
  • Best T-Shirt Design – 500 Festival T-Shirt


Silver Pinnacle Awards:

  • Best Volunteer Program – 500 Festival Volunteer Program, presented by Citizens Energy Group
  • Best Community Outreach Program – 500 Festival Princess Program
  • Best Event Invitation – KeyBank 500 Festival Snakepit Ball
  • Best Miscellaneous On-Site Décor – 100th Running Host Committee’s graphic on the JW Marriott


Bronze Pinnacle Awards:

  • Best Festival/Event Mobile Application – Indy Mini Mobile App
  • Best Sponsorship Program for Individual Sponsor – Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield for IPL 500 Festival Parade
  • Best Event within an Existing Festival – IPL 500 Festival Parade
  • Most Creative/Effective News Stunt – 500 Festival Kickoff to May

Headquartered in Boise, Idaho, The International Festivals and Events Association (IFEA) is a non-profit membership organization with members spanning 40 countries and five continents, and offers the most complete source of ideas, resources, information, education and networking for festival and event professionals worldwide. Visit  for additional details.