From food and drink, to music and culture, Snappening has compiled a list of our picks for the best 2014 summer festivals. We have the breakdown of where you should celebrate your summer and what you’ll need to enjoy a successful festival experience.

June 2014 Summer Festivals

Vintage Indiana Wine and Food Festival, June 7, Military Park

This annual summer festival offers the local delicacies and vino of Indiana to all in attendance (over 21). Up to 200 Indiana wine varieties are available to taste, as well as food from the Hoosier state, artist booths for viewing and purchase and live music throughout the day. A culmination of local food, drink and culture, this festival is one day to celebrate what makes our state great!

Circle City Pride Festival, June 14, American Legion Mall

In its 25th annual year this fabulous festival is enjoyment for all! Indiana’s largest LGBT celebration never fails to entertain festival goers, support a worthy cause, and ignite excitement. Featuring a rainbow 5k walk/run, community picnic, and the infamous pet pride event, this festival is a can’t-miss for all ages!

BBQ RibFest, June 19, Headwaters Park, Ft. Wayne, IN

This is the food-fest to end all food-fests. Over twenty tons of BBQ is consumed at RibFest each year, with a variety of preparation techniques from national award-winning BBQ teams across the country, whether you like it smoky, spicy or sweet and tangy, this festival will make you drool. Complete with some of the best blues performances in Indiana, this festival will make your belly and your ears happy.

July 2014 Summer Festivals

Fourth of July Celebration, July 4, Downtown Indianapolis

Celebrate our country’s independence downtown with your Indianapolis community! Enjoy the inaugural IndyPendence Day Street Festival Concert for Cancer on Georgia Street, with nationally known bands like Hoobastank, Sick Puppies and Puddle of Mud as well as local music. Fill your bellies and distract the kiddos with Indy’s 38th annual Fourth of July Ice Cream Social, and of course don’t forget to watch the fireworks as the sun goes down.

Indiana Black Expo Summer Celebration, July 10, Downtown Indianapolis

Celebrate culture, fun and summer with Indy Black Expo! Festivities include the Pacers corporate luncheon, two days of music heritage festival concerts, and the IBE fashion show. There is no shortage of activities to immerse yourself in at this year’s IBE summer celebration. General admission or three-day passes available.

August 2014 Summer Festivals

Motorcycles on Meridian, August 8, Downtown Indianapolis

Plug your ears and put on your leather! The annual Motorcycles on Meridian is a time-honored part of the Red Bull Indianapolis GP celebration, where motorcycles of all shapes, sizes, and sounds gather to roam the streets of downtown Indianapolis. Check out the festivities with family and friends – but bring ear plugs for the kids!

Dig IN: A Taste of Indiana, August 17, White River State Park

Farmers, chefs, brewers and food and wine enthusiasts gather at the 4th Annual Taste of Indiana to sample a variety of local Indiana food, beer and wine. This festival is a can’t-miss for any food and beverage enthusiast, holding the title for largest Indiana farm-to-fork festival around. And there’s more than food at this fiesta! Live local music and entertainment, discussion panels, and cooking demonstrations are also featured at Dig IN.

Road Trips: Summer Festivals 
Feel like taking a road trip for your next festival experience?  How about filling up the gas tank and heading to Chicago’s installment of RibFest on June 6? Or if you feel like a real down-home Midwestern experience head over to Wisconsin for the infamous Strawberry Festival, full of bubble-gum blowing contests, strawberry shortcake eating contests, crafts, beverages and more, all on June 28th, in quaint Cedarburg, WI.

Summer Festivals: What to Bring

Now that you’ve got the low-down on the hot festivals to enjoy this summer, Snappening wants to make sure you’ve got everything you need for a perfect festival experience. There are a few necessities no festival-goer should do without.

First, summer weather is hot and can dehydrate festival-goers easily when out all day enjoying the festivities. Be sure to pack at least one water bottle for every person in your group. When outdoors and walking around enjoying the sights all day, it can be surprisingly difficult to find water in a sea of beer and wine. Confirm your festival’s policy on beverages, packages and other carry-in items before leaving home to plan accordingly.

Next, despite the heat, when it comes to festivals, if the policy allows, consider bringing a light blanket with you—with live music, entertainment, and of course, fireworks, having a blanket to sit on is handy.

Finally, be sure to pack sunscreen. Walking around all day in the sun can be taxing on your skin, and this festival item is especially important if you are bringing kids.

Now that you’ve got our list of top summer 2014 festivals, be sure to check out proper festival and summer attire on our Fabulous Fashion for Any Occasion pinboard on Pinterest, and for tips and tricks to organize your own outdoor festival, check out Snappening’s How to Organize a Festival blog. Don’t forget to share your festival photos on Snappening’s Facebook page and tell us more about your festival experience on Twitter! Use hashtag #snappening on Instagram.