It's a grand event, to be sure. Getting there at 8am on Friday means the queue only takes about an hour to get through and you get a whole extra day. And the best way to finish, I've found is to leave late on Sunday and stop for ice cream on the grass at Kawakawa Bay on the way home :)
For a bit of quiet and comfort at festivals, I recommend a camper.
My experience with big commercial festivals was Glade in the UK. No queue of any size to get in, but had separate parking and needed to haul everything about 1km in the pouring rain. Also, BYO (& licensed), but all your booze had to be onsite by midnight on the first day for some reason..
Waiting in the terribly managed traffic at the entrance gate we were told Erykah Badu was held up by the over-full parking areas and the under staffed booze checks.
My experience with big commercial festivals was Glade in the UK. No queue of any size to get in, but had separate parking and needed to haul everything about 1km in the pouring rain.
The last Glastonbury I went to (1990), they changed the traffic flow around the farm and it was a disaster. We set off from London in the afternoon in my mate's Kombi and arrived on site early the next morning after crawling through narrow country lanes all night.
And then they tried to make us park the camper van miles from the camping ground. I'm not given to tantrums, but I jumped out and vigorously informed the gate staff that that would not be happening. They let us through.
Ah Splore, I'm still glowing :)
Highlights: The Hooha Hut, pretty much any time. Watching brilliant sets from The Nudge and Ahoribuzz on a mellow Sunday under a shady tree on the hill above the main stage - the best music of the festival IMO. And did anyone else see the glowing stick figure people and Vospertron dudes on Saturday night? Whoa. Just whoa.
Lowlights: The inconsiderate f**kers on yachts who emptied their toilet tanks in the bay, causing part of the beach to be closed on Sunday. I curse your house with a plague of locusts.
And did anyone else see the glowing stick figure people and Vospertron dudes on Saturday night? Whoa. Just whoa.
We saw them away up the beach as we walked back from the hut on Saturday night -- it was like an apparition.
I've also got a video clip of Peter Vosper tumbling down the hill in his LED suit. I'll convert it and upload later.
waits of up to four hours for pre-entry booze searches ...
I was in that queue. We arrived at 3:45 just as they stopped letting anyone through. Searches were not the reason, I was told that they had simply run out of campsites and carparks and had to sort something out. We waited an hour and a half, got directed back down the road to park the car, then waited another hour and a half for a shuttle to get us up to the camping area. So I was pretty pissed off and I missed the Yoots.
This is a bit of a cock up given they knew how many people were going to turn up! If I had to guess why they ran out of space, I'd suggest the number of cars parked in the camping areas might have something to do with it.
This is a bit of a cock up given they knew how many people were going to turn up! If I had to guess why they ran out of space, I’d suggest the number of cars parked in the camping areas might have something to do with it.
Yeah, I'm sure that was part of it. They made that mistake early on and it contributed to all the later problems.
Great silhouettes & clouds banner pic.
take me to the waita...
Maori standards set to a ska rhythm. Waita and the music of Jamaica usually meet in a roots reggae style, but I now wonder if it was meant to be a jump-up ska beat all along.
I felt a real surge of happiness as I sat on the hill surrounded by people singing along to waita, gazing across the crowd and out to the Gulf in the setting sun.
do you mean waiata?
or is it (they) a band?
I’d suggest the number of cars parked in the camping areas might have something to do with it.
Possibly, although we arrived very early Friday morning (thoroughly recommended for a stress-free set-up) and were clearly told we had to move the cars once set-up in the family camping area. However, friends who arrived much later discovered that all the car-parks were by then full, and were directed to park next to their tents. There may just have been a chronic shortage of space for parks.
We took the kids for the first time, 12 and 10, and what we missed out on in terms of unleashing our early morning weird, we more than made up on in terms of seeing it all through their eyes. Agree that the provision for families made a huge difference to the atmosphere.
Although the portaloo and final day swimming in the sea situation got a bit grim at times. Also had some very minor problems with tent site allocation, some sunburn, some strange experiences in the Living Lounge, some loud snorers (possibly myself included) and some serious queues for food and drink. Oh, another minor gripe about the fire engine shuttle, which wouldn't let kids on without a gold coin donation, and didn't have a bracelet credit reader to charge them.
Really sorry for those folks who had a bad time the Friday night and who may have been put off, hopefully it can be fixed for next time. But from our perspective the cons were vastly outweighed by the pros. All up it was a great experience.
Hiccups aside, best festival in NZ bar none. The location is outstanding. Something for everyone. The art and lighting was great. Enjoyed the early afternoons in the Hoohaa area, had a great time in the DJ tent, enjoyed the Firemans Social Club. Had fun at the dance-off with my daughter. Had good quality time with dear friends. The people-watching was awesome. And the Cuban Brothers gave me one of my most exhilarating and sheer fun gig experiences ever.
We'll definitely be back.With more comfortable shoes.
We took our 8 year old son, and while festival-as-parents was a very different experience (should one let one's 8 year old watch burlesque?), the way Splore is set up and run made it safe, fun and an awesome family experience.
Highlights for me were the wristband currency system, the excellent variety of food, the bars which allowed children in as long as they were with their parents, and most of all the spontaneous art and performance - we were treated to an amazing impromptu dance performance on the beach on Saturday.
Good times, long may it continue.
the fire engine shuttle was a bit of a racket! $1+ per passenger, about 25 people per trip, four trips an hour at least...that's a bit more than "covering costs" as they claimed.
I don't really mind - it's fine to make money but let's be honest about it!
I should add to my moan before - getting out was a breeze and well organised. We even got a ride on one of the golf carts (splore people are nice).
Also, the only reason we left before lunch on Sunday was because we didn't want to swim after the lifeguard told us there were "floaters" because some boats had emptied their sewage tanks. I'd be interested to know if there are any consequences for the boarties and/or the festival as a result of that very, very bad behaviour.
We took our 8 year old son, and while festival-as-parents was a very different experience (should one let one’s 8 year old watch burlesque?),
Heh. The girls from our camp complained mightily when one of the dads insisted on watching some of the burlesque:
"He made us watch prostitutes dancing! And he wouldn't let us leave!"
Nambasa, Sweetwaters, The Gathering even Rhythm & Vines and now my first Splore... they all have their arrival issues and loo nightmares... often suffering the same fate.. getting a little greedy and taking on more punters than they can cope with. Let's hope Splore can retain it's composure.
It was a great event, met fantastic people, saw some crazy things, dressed up in a blue wig and howled like a dog with hundreds of others during The Barons of Tang's awesome performance. I'm still smiling!
Also, the only reason we left before lunch on Sunday was because we didn’t want to swim after the lifeguard told us there were “floaters” because some boats had emptied their sewage tanks. I’d be interested to know if there are any consequences for the boarties and/or the festival as a result of that very, very bad behaviour.
The organisers were extremely keen to identify the offender – and hopefully prosecute that person. What a horrible thing to do.
The water seemed fine at the other end of the beach though. Hopefully.
Speaking of "festivals I have loved", some of your readers may be old enough to remember the grand-daddy of 'em all -- http://www.nambassa.com/
Cheers for posting the photo of our Fluxus Funhouse performance at the Portavilion Russell. If you have any more pics I'd be very grateful if you could send them through - I was too busy miming to take any!
It was great to party and swim with you, Mr Brown - that J Star set will remain one of my highlight memories (albeit a little fuzzy by that time) for a long time. Once again, Splore was a top weekend - congratulations to Amanda and her crew.
Fantastic festival all-round.
If I had to complain about one thing (and here it is), it would be poor sound at the Hooha Hut. Given there were international DJ's playing there, the pathetic sound system the festival provided was an embarrassment. Earl Gateshead had issues with one turntable not working on the friday, and J Stars set on Saturday was plagued with the left speakers cutting out.
The DJ stage on the other-hand had insane base driven sound.
Hermitude and @peace the highlights for me.
I spent the weekend at Mysore too, the palace is cool .... oh wait .....
It was great to party and swim with you, Mr Brown – that J Star set will remain one of my highlight memories (albeit a little fuzzy by that time) for a long time.
I loved the way that I kept running into you guys. And our high-five when the Sleng Teng came down was one of the great spontaneous moments of my weekend.
My faves were Sundays Hermitude set on the mainstage and a Hori Buzz, maybe because I could remember them best :-) On that note, great post RB, awesome to have all these semi memories come sifting back!
I simply don't understand anyone going home early sunday, I like to stretch it out - turns out sunday was my fave day!
Greed is easily thrown around but its just not the case. Suffice to stay we'll be meeting in the coming weeks (sleep first) and working through everything that worked and everything that didn't.
As one of the many HODs putting on the festival I personally would like to thank the 99% of you who come along dressed up and in such a great mood. Thousands of smiles are my only profit margin. Totally worth it.