INDIANAPOLIS - Saturday night was a big night for the 43rd annual Indiana Black Expo Summer Celebration and there was a large presence of law enforcement downtown to make sure safety was a top priority.
Officials with the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department said they were working overtime to ensure
recent crime concerns didn't interfere with the family event.
Thousands of people were in town to take part in the festivities over the weekend.
Whether they were taking in the sights or one of the many entertainment events, participants said there was something for everyone at the IBE Summer Celebration.
"Every time there's something new. And the people who come every year, they continue to bring those great products, so I think people keep coming back because they want to see what's here," Sheker Washington said.
Many people were excited to embrace the cultural significance of the event.
"With the Trayvon Martin situation, I really felt the need to participate in some way with black culture, so I'm excited about what we've been exposed to on our trip here to Indianapolis," Barrett Berry said.
Visitors from out of town saw the best of the event.
"We don't have too much like this, so it's a really unique experience, I think it's great, so I'd like to see it grow and spread," Julian Bradley said.
With the high rate of shootings and homicides so far in 2013, police presence was evident to visitors.
IMPD Chief Rick Hite said authorities were working overtime and encouraging peace.
"There are officers all over the place and even without the officers all over the place, I feel safe being around my people," Rachel Thomas said.
The festivities were set to continue with musical acts and parties throughout the night that were certain to keep the downtown energy high throughout the night.