written by Andrea Hnatievych
At a Glance
Colorado’s Global Dance and local Relentless Beats presented Arizona with its third annual Global Dance Festival: Western Edition on November 19th, 2016. The lineup was the biggest that Rawhide Western Town has seen to this day, headliners including Bassnectar, Nero, Louis the Child, Datsik, Alison Wonderland, and Galantis to name a few. With Bassnectar last performing in Arizona over 4 years ago, the attendees were sure that it was going to be an epic night.
Music genre: Dubstep, House, Techno, Electronic
Crowd type: Ravers, Bass-heads
Water stations: Yes, there was a free water station hosted by the Relentless Rangers that was easy to locate near the main stage.
How to Get There
Rawhide Western Town is off of exit 162 on Interstate 10 near Wild Horse Pass Hotel and Casino in Chandler, AZ. After that, just follow the signs for Rawhide. Carpool to save your hard earned cash as well as the planet!
Where to Stay
Arizona Grand Resort and Spa, located ten minutes away, was partnered with the festival and provided transportation to and from the venue included in the room rate of $159/night. Other nearby options included Moxy (Tempe) and Hampton Inn & Suites (ten minutes away).
Food was available and easy to find at the event, including classic event foods such as pizza, burgers, and gourmet mac & cheese. The food vendors were located near the largest stage, Bandit Canyon. The Western Town also provided attendees with a general store, candy store, several bars, and a sit down restaurant called Pizza Tavern.
The festival consisted of 3 stages, ranging from small and personal to massive and jaw-dropping. The Hideout was the smallest of these, hosting a house and techno heavy itinerary for the night. The Tombstone stage and Bandit Canyon were the others, near the entrance and the latter at the end of the venue. The main stage was truly incredible and perfect for the artists that performed there, the production top- notch. The displays fit the producers sounds flawlessly and kept the crowds enticed with their kaleidoscopic lasers.
Things to Do
With 3 stages and a killer lineup, it was quite difficult to get away from the beautiful madness of it all. There was a mechanical bull and rock climbing station available for those feeling adventurous, and a photo booth to take a break and create an unforgettable memory for the night. There were many areas to walk around and explore such as the saloon/bar, fitting the western theme perfectly. Vendors showcased a variety of goodies and official merchandise throughout the venue as well.
What makes the festival different?
The beauty of Rawhide Western Town is in the amount of space that it provides as well as the western feel that encompasses attendees when they enter. Upon entering the venue, many were enchanted by the beautiful walkway that lead into the back of the venue, making for pleasant travel from stage to stage. Though Global Dance Festival is only a one-day event in Arizona and does not have camping, the atmosphere was very similar to that of a longer festival because of the amount of space the venue allotted. The event was unique in the fact that it had 3 stages, giving attendees the opportunity to maximize the artists they can jam out to as well as discover new favorites. Though the event consisted of only electronic music, many sub genres were present and coincided with the layout of the stages to create a diverse experience for any EDM lover.
Global Dance Festival Arizona exceeded any expectations going into it with it’s glorious level of production and organization. The lines to get in were fairly short and organized for the size of the event and the map provided made it easy to find any stage or area desired despite the size of the venue. In terms of the attendees, there was a general consensus of love and acceptance all around, attendees able to express themselves freely and frolic through the venue to see their favorite artists and dance the night away. The event was perfect for any lovers of bass and the heavier spectrum of electronic music. Despite it’s small size, the Hideout Stage provided a unique atmosphere where many shufflers would hang out and battle throughout the night, a cool thing to witness or even be a part of. Overall, Global Dance and Relentless Beats put together a great event for Arizona that was epic to say the least, and I will most definitely be back next year!