Tickets available for free All-Star Tip-Off event

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Bicentennial Unity Plaza, adjacent to Gainbridge Fieldhouse, opened to the public on Aug. 24, 2023. (IBJ photo/Mickey Shuey)

Editor’s note: Tickets for this event were already distributed shortly after they became available Monday afternoon.

Free tickets for a first-of-its-kind event to mark the start of NBA All-Star festivities in Indianapolis are now available to the public.

The Tip-Off, scheduled for Feb. 15 at Bicentennial Unity Plaza, is expected to celebrate Indiana’s connection to basketball, arts and culture.

The event is free and open to the public, but only 5,000 tickets are being distributed. Tickets must be obtained through the Gainbridge Fieldhouse website, with a limit of four per person.

The Tip-Off is a collaboration of the All-Star 2024 Host Committee, cultural consultant GangGang, Innovative, and Dodd Technologies. The 45-minute event will be emceed by former Indiana Fever star Tamika Catchings and comedian and actor Mike Epps, an Indianapolis native. It will include a performance by a surprise national music artist, a fireworks display, local music and appearances by former NBA and Pacers players.

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver is expected to be among those in attendance for the event, which is the first formal opening ceremony to be held for an the league’s All-Star weekend.

“The Tip-Off is yet another element that is going to make NBA All-Star in Indy special and unique, an extra-special touch that sets our city apart and an exciting way to send us into a special weekend of basketball, arts, and culture,” Mel Raines, president of the NBA All-Star 2024 Host Committee, said in written remarks. Raines is also president and chief operating officer for Pacers Sports & Entertainment.

Gates will open at 5 p.m. for the event, with the programming starting at 6 p.m.

The event is one of several arts-focused efforts planned for throughout All-Star weekend. About $2 million is being spent on arts and entertainment initiatives, according to the host committee.

The NBA on Monday unveiled a video LED court that will be used during All-Star events at Lucas Oil Stadium, offering a more immersive experience for spectators in the stands and those watching on television. The display will be used during the Ruffles Celebrity Game on Feb. 16, as well as State Farm Saturday Night on Feb. 17.

The court will feature design and color changes, replays, game statistics, player tracking, interactive games and animations to accompany big plays.

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