Good Vibes

The Electric Daisy Carnival: Can I Just Live Here Forever?

Individuals who live for self-expression—and friendship, and fire-spitting octopi—power EDC culture at the yearly Vegas festival.

By Phylicia Sneed July 11, 2016

Screen shot 2016 07 12 at 4.42.58 pm cydypi

This year marked the 20th anniversary of the Electric Daisy Carnival.

The rhythmical beat pounded through my ears when I first stepped foot on the pavement. The illumination of the night sky was overrun with vibrant flashing lights that bounced to the beat of the music. Hand in hand, my husband and I walked through an entryway that read “Welcome Home Headliners.” In a raver’s world, this means you stepped foot in the modern Woodstock of today, complete with good vibes and good times.

The Electric Daisy Carnival is hosted every year in Las Vegas at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway; this year marked its 20 year anniversary. I knew that when I swiped my credit card to pay for two $329 tickets, I would be guaranteed an experience.  The concert runs three days from dusk to dawn. Notoriously, by reputation, Vegas is the city that never sleeps. There is a reason for that.

Day One

Screen shot 2016 07 12 at 4.41.59 pm lfmayd

The author in one of several outfits specially planned for the festival.

Hardest decision of the day: what should I wear? Among the plethora of hand-made tutus and tops that probably contain 10 pounds of rhinestones alone, I want to find the perfect top to make an entrance. One cannot go wrong with a red tutu and a Katy Perry “Roar” inspired jungle top embellished in Hobby Lobby’s best fake flowers. Individuals who live for self-expression power EDC culture; today, I’m expressing that I am a champion! 

We have arrived! I’m happy to see that the festival is still as I remember it. From dancing banana costumes to people bravely walking in stilts, I finally found my happy place. As expected, there were eight stages playing the best EDM DJs from Zedd to The Chainsmokers, with special appearances from John Legend and Soulja Boy. There were dedicated houses to legendary liquor concoctions like Jägermeister and Smirnoff. Art cars, costumed dancers, and a giant, fire-spitting octopus made of metal lit its way through the crowds of people. 

Screen shot 2016 07 12 at 4.42.46 pm kjcswh

Day Two 

Strapping on a bohemian skirt with gold coins, a red beaded top and my favorite bracelets, it’s once again time to party. I have to remember that water is my BFF and Vegas is home to $10 bottles of water. I guess supply and demand runs deep in the desert. Luckily, the festival has provided free water. Whether or not it’s up to Fiji standards is another story. 

On account of the 401,000 people who attended the festival on day one, I found that on day two, I had the opportunity to explore more of the carnival grounds.  Walking through EDC you find yourself compelled to give random high-fives and run up to people to compliment their outfits. There is also a commonly known tradition in the raver world called PLUR. PLUR stands for Peace, Love, Unity, and Respect. It is a part of a message to send good vibes by exchanging “Kandi”, elaborate bracelets made from beads. Among the exchanges I’ve made, I find that people take bead making very seriously and hours have gone into making giant dedications to prominent cartoon figures like Pikachu and Patrick from Spongebob Squarepants. I am not so creatively inclined nor with loads of time on my hands.

Ending day two with stacks of beads and a better outlook on the human race.

Screen shot 2016 07 12 at 4.43.05 pm fpbmdf

Day Three 

Ah, I dread the day when the festivities come to an end and the fireworks burn no more. It is the final night of EDC, I have made numerous new Instagram followers and I will be heading home just a little bit richer in bead currency. I begin the night meeting with my beloved in EDC town to renew our vows. I am in a “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” inspired outfit, complete with a bedazzled bow corset and a light up tutu. We kiss under the electric sky and fireworks burst, both metaphorical and literal. Yes, I know this sounds like a Nicholas Sparks novel but I’m a hopeless romantic. 

 My night concludes with a performance from DJ Snake, an EDM DJ after my own heart. His famous songs like “Turn Down for What” and “Lean On” have me jumping and dancing without reason for rhythm. I am free of all fears of judgment for there is none here. We are all united under one big electric sky, and if only for a moment, we feel the earth stopping under the power of music and friendship and all with the world feel right.

Show Comments