Each year, the AES 500 Festival Parade names a Grand Marshal. One of the Festival’s most anticipated announcements, a wide range of people has filled the role over the last 65 years. From the President of the United States to military heroes – cartoon characters to Hollywood movie stars – racing legends to everyday heroes – a common theme amongst all AES 500 Festival Parade Grand Marshals, they are people who are driven to create change and be a voice for a noble cause.
This year’s AES 500 Festival Parade Grand Marshal is August A. Ebeling, a longtime volunteer with the 500 Festival Volunteer Program, presented by Citizens Energy Group. As the return of in-person events has reinforced that volunteers are essential to making these events possible, it is with great pride that the 500 Festival recognizes August and his service to the 500 Festival, the Indianapolis community, and the state of Indiana.
In 2016, August was named the 500 Festival Volunteer of the Year for his dedication and generous donation of his time and talent in assisting the 500 Festival to produce life-enriching events and programs that celebrate an impactful, community led-road to the Indianapolis 500.
August’s commitment to service and passion for the 500 Festival has profoundly impacted the 500 Festival & Indianapolis 500 Education Program, presented by Indiana University Health. His willingness to go above and beyond led to the development of the Need for Speed Station, which was voted the #1 rated Study Trip Station by teachers, students, the 500 Festival Princesses, and volunteers.
The AES 500 Festival Parade is one of the most beloved Month of May traditions and we are thrilled to gather together once again to celebrate with friends, family, and the community.
Our volunteers are the heart of the 500 Festival, and we are proud to honor Augie as our Grand Marshal, representing each of our incredible volunteers who selflessly give their time and effort to help make the Month of May possible.
2022: August A. Ebeling, longtime 500 Festival Volunteer
2019: Sam Schmidt, NTT IndyCar Series Team Owner and Philanthropist
2018: Abby Abel and Mitch Bonar, Inspirational Advocates for Unified Sports
2017: Eva Moses Kor, Forgiveness Advocate, Champion of Human Rights, Holocaust Survivor
2016: Emma Stumpf, Inspirational Teen Philanthropist
2015: 1955 Crispus Attucks State Champion Basketball Team, Groundbreaking Civil Rights Trailblazers
You can view the full list of AES 500 Festival Parade Grand Marshals HERE.