Mysteryland, the longest-running electronic dance music (EDM) festival in the world, made its U.S. debut at the iconic Woodstock grounds in Bethel Woods, NY.
The EDM market generates approximately $20 billion annually and is growing each year by about 10%, according to Wall Street Journal estimates.
About 20,000 people per day attended Mysteryland USA over the Memorial Day weekend, underscoring the big opportunity distributors have when targeting promoters at live events like this one.
“Mysteryland has had a tremendous impact on the music world, and it is the logical festival to follow in the footsteps of the original ground-breaking music event: Woodstock,” said Robert F.X. Sillerman, chairman and CEO of SFX Entertainment (SFX acquired ID&T, the producer of Mysteryland, earlier this year). “Woodstock changed everything when it took place in 1969. Mysteryland did the same 20 years ago, when it started what is now a tidal wave of electronic music festivals and Electronic Music Culture (EMC), which engages hundreds of millions of people across the planet.”
Performers included Kaskade, Dillon Francis, Moby, Steve Aoki and Fedde Le Grand on the main stage. The Boat Stage, which catered to bass-hungry fans, featured Zomboy, Big Gigantic and Bro Safari. Hardstyle fans could throw their bodies to Coone, Noisecontrollers and Brennan Heart in the Q-Dance tent. There were also mini-festivals within the event, showcasing sounds of techno, tech-house and vinyl-only DJs. And, if fans needed time to rest their feet (or ears), they could venture to the “healing garden” for yoga, meditation or aromatherapy.
Of course, in the midst of this eclectic mix of music, dance and art, there was also an abundance of fun and useful promotional products onsite. One of the main sponsors of Mysteryland USA was Sweden-based Rekorderlig Cider. Friendly Rekorderlig vendors decked out in logoed red polos offered samples of their flavored hard cider. They also gave soaked dancers free branded ponchos to shield them from the intermittent afternoon downpours. One Rekorderlig vendor explained that the plastic pouch the ponchos came in could act as a waterproof case for cell phones.
Aside from Rekorderlig gear, there was a plethora of Mysteryland merchandise, which featured Mysteryland and Woodstock ’69 logos. Hot-selling items included tees, cropped tops, bags, headwear, flags and accessories. Rookie campers were able to buy blankets, sleeping bags and other necessities. Mysteryland offered “holy ground” campers their own camping survival kit, too, complete with a two-person logoed tent. And, for fans who weren’t able to attend, merchandise remains available for sale on the Mysteryland website.
Festivalgoers were also able to purchase unique meals and snacks from Smorgasburg Food Fest. Smorgasburg is a food market held every Saturday in the hipster Brooklyn neighborhood of Williamsburg. The market partnered with Mysteryland to offer organic, vegan and other food options through “cashless” technology.
Attendees were able to put money onto their logoed wristbands either online or at stations throughout the festival grounds. Their credit instantly changed into “birdie bucks” that could be used to pay for food, beverages, merchandise or showers throughout the weekend. The leftover money was then refunded back onto whatever credit card attendees provided.
SFX reports in a Business Wire press release that the “first all-cashless festival at Mysteryland USA, dramatically improved the fan experience leading to higher food, beverage and merchandise spending.”
“The wristbands were great,” says attendee Kristin Dennison. “We didn’t have to worry about scrambling for cash while trying to get back to the stage, or wait around in long lines to get food and take a shower.”
With the help of sponsors like Rekorderlig and many others, Mysteryland was able to recreate a new mecca for fans of all EDM genres. And with logoed keepsakes, the memories from Mysteryland are guaranteed to live on for generations to come.