News Release: Juneteenth, Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival and other June events postponed

Cultural events at Eiteljorg Museum sidelined due to public health emergency; some will be rescheduled

INDIANAPOLIS – Due to the ongoing public health emergency, several June events at the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art will not take place as scheduled. They include the Juneteenth Community Celebration, originally set for June 6, the Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival, planned for June 27-28, and the free concerts Wednesday evenings in June.

“Postponing the Eiteljorg’s important and popular public programming was a painful decision. In light of the ongoing COVID-19 public health emergency that prompted the museum’s temporary closure, we must look first to the safety of visitors, artists, volunteers, employees and our community,” Eiteljorg President and CEO John Vanausdall said. “It is unknown whether city and state restrictions on large public gatherings — necessary as they are — can be lifted in time to conduct these events as planned; so taking them off the June calendar was the most responsible option.”

Here is a list of affected June events that won’t take place on the original dates. The Eiteljorg Museum will attempt to reschedule some later, when possible:

  • Saturday, June 6: The free Juneteenth Community Celebration commemorates the abolition of slavery and arrival of freedom in Texas at the end of the Civil War, and celebrates African-American artists in the local community. A new date has not yet been determined.
  • Wednesday evenings, June 3, 10, 17 and 24: The free outdoor concerts in the Summer Under the Sails series will not take place live on Wednesdays in June as scheduled. The museum is exploring the possibility of holding virtual concerts with the scheduled performers. The remaining free Wednesday concerts in the series in July remain scheduled, subject to public health guidelines and regulations as they become available.
  • Saturday June 27 and Sunday June 28: The 28th annual Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival is postponed to June 26-27, 2021. Museum staff are seeking to re-book the same artists and performers, where possible.

Since 1993, the Eiteljorg Indian Market and Festival has been one of the preeminent summer cultural events in downtown Indianapolis; it builds support for today’s Native American artists and creates opportunities for collectors to connect with artists and for families to learn more about Indigenous cultures. Each June on the weekend following Father’s Day, the Eiteljorg has hosted more than 100 artists from more than 50 Native American or First Nations cultures. Artists present artworks from multiple disciplines, including jewelry, pottery, basketry, beadwork, carvings, paintings, weavings and cultural items, and can enter their works in a judged art competition in multiple categories. Visitors from across the region meet the artists on the beautiful museum grounds and purchase their art.

Planning and organizing Indian Market and Festival is an ongoing project throughout the year. Part of the market’s appeal is the opportunity for visitors to interact with artists, learning about and purchasing their art. The museum’s senior management along with co-chairs of the Indian Market Task Force concluded that social distancing measures would inhibit the artist interaction and make an art market festival experience difficult to execute. Advance ticket sales had not yet begun for Indian Market and Festival, so there are no admission fees to refund.

Because the Eiteljorg Museum is temporarily closed until further notice due to the public health situation, the public is encouraged to check the museum’s website and its social media for the latest updates. Mindful of the fact that the Indian Market and Festival is important to artists’ livelihoods, the Eiteljorg Museum is exploring ways of connecting potential art purchasers with artists’ websites; check soon for details.

About the Eiteljorg Museum
A cultural pillar for more than 30 years in downtown Indianapolis’ scenic White River State Park, the Eiteljorg Museum seeks to inspire an appreciation and understanding of the art, history and cultures of and the Indigenous peoples of North America and of the American West by telling amazing stories. Located on the Central Canal at 500 West Washington St., the Eiteljorg is a 501c3 nonprofit organization. It was named one of the USA Today Readers’ Choice 10 Best Indiana Attractions.



Media Contacts:
Bryan Corbin
Public Relations Manager

Bert Beiswanger
Director of Marketing and Communications

Hyacinth Rucker
Digital Communications Manager

Museum Info

Monday – Saturday:
10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Noon – 5 p.m.

500 W. Washington St.
Indianapolis, IN 46204