Beyond the Race

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Indianapolis 500 activities saturate the calendar this month, and it's not that I'm against those events, and especially not the race. I know plenty of IndyCar fans, and I get it. I just don't get into it. But as a Hoosier, that's a tough statement to own up to. Fortunately for me and those like me, there are countless other social activities to entertain us during May. Below are just a handful of things to see and do if the checkered-flag events don't excite you. Of course, there's First Friday. And here are few more under-the-radar arts happenings that are switching things up and adding variety to the usual lineup.

ICON Party: New York Edition, Saturday May 17th

ICON is a deejay tribute party that plays music from a particular artist or genre each month. Beyonce, Michael Jackson and the Notorious B.I.G. have all been shown love at these packed-house parties that take place at either the Jazz Kitchen or New Orleans on the Ave. On May 17th the series will pay tribute to New York artists like Rick James, The Beastie Boys, Nas and Mary J. Blige from 10:30 p.m. until the party slows down. Tickets are $10 and available only to the 21 and over crowd. The party happens at the Jazz Kitchen in Broad Ripple and is deejayed by DJ Limelight and DJ Lite Blu.

Localmotion, Sunday May 18th

Localmotion is a weekly, all-ages open-mic night that highlights the talent that exists in central Indiana. Everyone from storytellers, poets, emcees, musicians, singers, orators to ballroom dancers and Tai Chi performers have stopped by to display their talents at the Fountain Square venue. Localmotion runs from 7 to 10 p.m. at Fletcher Place Arts and Books with free admission.

Take that Tuesday, May 20th

Take That Tuesday is the longest-running weekly urban music night in Indy. For more than seven consistent years, DJ MetroGnome has been bringing Indy the best in hip-hop, soul, funk, reggae and throwback jams. Keep in mind that this DJ doesn't take requests, but he doesn't need to. He's that good. Take that Tuesday takes place at Coaches Tavern on South Pennsylvania, across from Scotty's. The event is always free and there is never a dress code. Music starts at 10:30 p.m.

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May 22nd, a Neighborhood Tour via Party Bus

Ever thought about exploring the homes and public art in a neighborhood via party bus? Mosaic City, the organization near and dear to my heart, offers up that joy ride to anyone who is available to board. Hosted by the Mapleton Fall Creek Development Corporation, the Neighborhood Party Bus will begin at City Gallery (Harrison Center) at 5:30 p.m. and travel through neighborhoods in the urban core (below 38th Street between College and Meridian) for 90 minutes. Sun King will be on hand. Email Info@OurMosaicCity.com to RSVP.

Windy to Indy, A Chicago House Party in Indy, Saturday May 31st

If you're into house music, this may be the place for you on the last day of the month. Old Soul Entertainment presents #WindytoIndy -- a new Chicago-style house music party in Indy with DJ MetroGnome, DJ Loubey and DJ Rasul. For $10 at New Orleans on the Ave, attendees will hear soul house, deep house, juke and disco. This is definitely something new for the Avenue.

Gone are the days when it would be OK to hear that there isn't anything to do in Indy. Now, with this variety and this refreshing consistency, it's hard not to be out every day of the week. Enjoy May in the city!

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