The History of CarmelFest

1988- Mayor Dottie Hancock and Chamber of Commerce Director Nancy Blondin originated the idea of having a Fourth of July celebration in Carmel…and aptly called the gathering CarmelFest.  The festival was small with a few booths, food tables and games set up in an open lot where the courthouse would later be built.

1989- CarmelFest moved to the Carmel High School Athletic Facility and added more games including a dunking tank.  Attendance for the festival was around 200 people.

1994- Mayor Ted Johnson asked Jeff Worrell to create a citizen committee to organize CarmelFest. The event was moved from Carmel High School to its current location at Carmel Civic Square.

1994- The first CarmelFest Spark Button was sold.

2001- The CarmelFest Parade, themed “Unsung Heroes”, drew large crowds.

2004- Mayor Jim Brainard asked the Rotary Club of Carmel to organize CarmelFest and help the event grow.

2013- CarmelFest celebrates its 25th year with an expected attendance of 50,000 people.

2015- With fabulous weather and weekend dates, CarmelFest set record attendance levels for the parade and festival!

2018- Marks the 30th consecutive year for the CarmelFest celebration.