Music Festivals

Four Days In Vegas: A "First Time At EDC" Travel Journal

"EDM has the power to make people profoundly happy. And if those good vibes are trickling down to the kids, well, that's alright."

Life is all about creating opportunities that will allow you to follow and achieve your dreams, however difficult, weird, or seemingly impossible those dreams may seem. In the past few months, years really, my own life has been both enchanted and treacherous, with love gained and lost, dealing with death and accepting new life into my family, and finally finding a calling that has me going "all in," ready to hit my jackpot.

Damn. Here I thought this article was only going to be about some music festival in the Nevada desert.

So when the opportunity to cover the 2013 Electric Daisy Carnival in Las Vegas presented itself, I gladly took it. The three day night celebration of EDM is one of the biggest and most adored music festivals in the world, with over one hundred thousand people visiting the Las Vegas Motor Speedway each night to live the PLUR (Peace.Love.Unity.Respect) life to the beat of a DJ's electronic pulse.

The following is a timeline of my first EDC experience.

Thursday, June 20th

00:00 I arrive at McCarran Las Vegas International Airport at midnight. It was the cheapest direct flight I could find on short notice. Chuy, my friend, fellow photographer, and partner-in-crime wasn't scheduled to land until noon, which meant I had a full 12 hours to kill in Vegas. This should be interesting.

01:00 Note to self: if you are ever standing in the long line for a shuttle, and someone with more money than you hires a limo and offers a free ride to any hotel on the Las Vegas Strip, take it without hesitation. Fuck it, its Vegas baby!

07:00 I've spent my last few hours walking between The Bellagio, The Cosmopolitan, and The Aria hotels, gambling, drinking, and taking Vine video of an eerily empty Las Vegas Boulevard. I've been awake for 24-hours now, and my body desperately wants to shut down, but I'm also starving. Time to hit the breakfast buffet at The Bellagio. All-You-Can-Drink mimosas, here I come!

11:00 The restrooms at The Aria are a nice and quiet place to sleep.

13:00 Meet up with Chuy at the hotel. Leave our bags and head to the Marquee Nightclub & Dayclub for a pool party with Dutch producer and DJ Sander Von Doorn. The DJ's PR rep was able to add my name (+1) to the guest list. Within a few minutes, we were in. Let the drinking and debauchery begin.

22:00 After some much needed rest, we are back at the Marquee for the Nightclub version. Swedish DJ, remixer, and producer Avicii is headlining tonight, which means the line to get in is a mile long, and tickets are expensive. However, one of Chuy's connections in Vegas is a big-time club promoter who walks us right in through the VIP line. We somehow manage to sweet talk out way onto a private balcony overlooking the main dance floor. Today is Chuy's birthday, and we are celebrating. Salud, cabrón!

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When he's not roaming around the city in search of tacos and graffiti, Houston Press contributor Marco both writes and points his camera lens toward the vibrant Houston music scene and beyond.