Insomniac’s advertisements for EDC let you know that the festival is about a lot more than just dancing and DJs in the desert. It is, as they say, an “experience.”
And after I devoted all of my time at last year’s carnival to hearing my favorite artists and discovering new ones, I decided to use Friday night at EDC to not only check out some good electronic music, but also do a few things I had missed out on. Some might even consider them EDC essentials.
Go on the rides: It’s a carnival, right? After not going on a single ride last year this was at the top of my to-do list. I opted for the swings.
Ride a Ferris wheel: I find this slightly different than a ride, especially when we have an “observation” wheel (or two) being built on the Strip right now. Seeing EDC in its entirety is a pretty amazing sight, it really makes you appreciate what can be done with 1,000 acres for 115,000 people. Also, it gives your feet a respite from the long hours of wandering the festival grounds—a nice break to just enjoy what’s going down at a nearby stage. I ended up riding the smaller of the two, the one right next to Kinetic Field. Fedde Le Grand’s awesome beats made the view even sweeter.
Be at the front of a fist-pumping sea of people for one of your favorite DJs: Surrounded by people, surrounded by lights and surrounded by sound—everyone at EDC is looking for it: a sensory overload. I found myself up-front-and-center for Gareth Emery’s set at the Circuit Grounds stage. The cherry on top? The night’s fireworks show began right in the middle of it. The spectacle almost seemed as if it was synchronized to the music—a real-life iTunes visualizer in the sky.
Watch the sun come up: I don’t pull all-nighters often, so I never thought I would stay until the very end of EDC. But I surprised myself Friday (uh, Saturday?) when I saw the sunrise during my Ferris wheel ride. This really gives you a sense of accomplishment, like you didn’t miss out on anything. Also, seeing EDC goers stumble out of the Speedway is quite the sight. Not even the vibrance of neon tutus can mask the exhaustion apparent on everyone’s faces while they try to recollect where in the hell they parked their car. Furthermore, the seemingly mile-long cab line is better than any Halloween parade you’ll ever see (except the one that Weekly throws each year Downtown, of course. We totally expect to see you there).