Strawberry Festival, CCC, Indianapolis

Forget the diet, or anything resembling “watching” what you eat.

We’re having “the Works!”

Every year during the second week of June, downtown Indianapolis’ Christ Church Cathedral hosts their annual Strawberry Festival. People from all over the city, not just the downtown office workers, pour into the city center for Strawberry Shortcake on the Circle! This is the 54th year they’ve had it and it hasn’t lost a bit of its appeal. In fact, I think it’s getting bigger each year!


This year, I almost didn’t go! The forecast was rain…and cold – 55 was the projected high (in June)! I couldn’t imagine hanging out at the Circle in the rain and cold (there isn’t any shelter there). But my sister-in-law, V., called me at 10:30 am asking me if I was going. So even though it looked cloudy and dark, I said: “yes, let’s.” She and my nephew, G., would be by in a few minutes to pick me up. I wasn’t quite ready, but changed my clothes on the fly and brushed my hair. No time for makeup or anything fancy. Within a few minutes, they arrived and we piled into the SUV and headed downtown.

We pulled into underground parking and walked three blocks to where the colored tents were dishing up plastic clamshell containers of red sticky sweet goodness. The lines were quite long as usual. The threat of rain did nothing to deter the strawberry lovers! And within about five minutes of getting into the line, the rain started coming down. G. Looked up at the clouds and announced, “it’ll blow over in a couple minutes.”

Several people weren’t willing to get wet and they evacuated the line, perhaps heading back to their offices to work. But since we’d come all that way, there was never a question of whether we’d stand in the rain and wait our turn. Their leaving simply put us that much closer to strawberry heaven. We pulled up our hoods and hunkered down.


And G. was right in about five minutes, the rain stopped and the classical quartet under the music tent resumed the entertainment. We finally got to the front of the line and ordered. I think one of the things that keeps this tradition alive (besides the obvious) is that they don’t hold back. The servings have always been generous. The woman in the tent pours a heaping ladle of strawberries on my shortcake and the next server added a walloping dollop of whip cream.


We found a spot on the steps of the Circle Monument, sat down on the still wet limestone and got busy eating. It was really so good.  I was glad I hadn’t missed out on attending just because of the gloomy weather.


And it was especially good to be there with family – one of whom I hadn’t seen in ages! Thanks, G. for going with us and catching me up on what’s going on in your life over there in Italy!! Thanks, V. for calling a girl up when she’d been thinking about staying home. I appreciate you!


What are your favorite local festivals and what makes them so special?

Thanks for reading, as always, and keep showing up.

~Tracy, A Girl on Her Own

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