Ultra 2014: After Trampling, It's Party as Usual

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Two days after a horrifying trampling incident that has city officials, including Mayor Tomás Regalado, calling for an end to Miami as host city of Ultra, the massive EDM festival carried on like, well, a massive EDM festival.

Throughout Sunday afternoon, thousands of revelers -- many in colorful body or face paint or at least clad in the festival's apparent unofficial uniform of revealing platinum booty shorts -- streamed towards Bayfront Park. Promoters dispensed soon-to-be discarded fliers and bracelets and those trippy glasses, and a benevolent soul handed toilet paper to several people waiting in line for typically gross Port-A-Potties. Also, some guy with a tattooed forehead walked around carrying a cardboard sign that said "I just like to write on cardboard." (When complimented on the sign, he then stopped and asked for a buck.)

So on Possibly the Last Day of Ultra Ever -- if the mayor gets his way -- it was, you know, party as usual.

See also: Ultra Music Festival: Female Security Guard Fights For Her Life After "Mob" Trampled Her

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Photo by George Martinez

The majority of revelers, in fact, appeared to be unaware of Friday night's incident. Alex Roque, 21, and Roly Martinez, 19, were walking just feet from the spot where Erica Mack had been nearly killed when they learned, from Crossfade, about the trampling. Neither seemed much surprised -- Roque, an Argentine flag draped around his waist, said that sneaking into Ultra was common. He and Martinez had tickets this year, but last year, he said, he resorted to jumping a fence to enter the festival.

"That's why I jump," he said after learning of the fence storming. "I don't rush."

Stefanie Pangle, 45, and her boyfriend Scott Key, 43, both visiting from Charleston, South Carolina, also hadn't heard anything. The small business owners were attending Ultra for the first time and had been shut out on Saturday when the tickets they bought for $600 had been revealed as frauds at the scanning gate.

"Oh my God," Pangle said when told of the trampling.

The news, however, did little to dampen their excitement. After having already spent $1000 on tickets, Key said, walking fast with a beer bottle in his hand, "we want to have fun."

Near the ticket gate was Mayra Lozano, 27. She was dressed entirely in bright purple. Lozano, passing out packets of Takis snacks, also hadn't heard about Mack and wasn't really surprised, either. She had begun work on Friday inside the ticketed area but then asked to be relocated to outside the gates after an unpleasant experience. "It didn't feel very safe," she said in Spanish. "There were too many people too close together."

Waiting on a bench slightly removed from the crowd was Shey Junqueira, an advertising student dressed in furry boots and a green and white tinsel crown. Junqueira, 19, said a friend had told her of the trampling incident, but she didn't really expect other partygoers to have any idea.

"When you're coming to Ultra," she said, "you're so much into the mentality of going to Ultra you don't hear about these things until after." Junqueira, a five-year Ultra veteran, had also heard the rumors that politicians wanted the festival shut down, that this could be the last year. But she was skeptical that such a big economic engine (which generated more than $30 million in 2013 ticket sales alone) could really be stopped. "They'll move it or up the security," she said. "I don't think they'll cancel it altogether. It's a big brand."

When approached by Crossfade, two security guards for Contemporary Services Corporation, the private company Erica Mack was working for, quickly replied they had no comment. Officer Pete Gomez, an assistant fire chief, said the Miami Fire Department's reaction to Mack's trampling had been effective and that no logistical changes were implemented in the wake of the incident.

Crossfade's Top Blogs
-Young Ultra Attendee Dies After Saturday's Show
-Miami Police Chief: Ultra Organizers Could Face Charges Over Trampling
-Ultra Plans "Comprehensive Security Review" in Response to Security Guard's Trampling
-Ultra 2014: Video Shows Fence Jumpers Retreating After Being Caught by Security

Send your tips to trevor.bach@miaminewtimes.com, or follow @trevorbach.

Follow Crossfade on Facebook and Twitter @Crossfade_SFL.

Location Info

Map

Klipsch Amphitheater at Bayfront Park

301 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, FL

Category: Music

Bayfront Park

301 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, FL

Category: General

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9 comments
CommanderBigFoot
CommanderBigFoot

Bayfront Park is a City park not private property ........

Cary Gonzalez
Cary Gonzalez

And in other news: Obama was re-elected for a second term, the fourth sequel to the Harry Potter series will be released to theaters this year, Apple is rumored to be working on iPhone 2 and David Lee Roth has left Van Halen to pursue a solo career. With that, we turn the Delorean back to NT so they can continue reporting retro news.

Joseph Mazon
Joseph Mazon

keep the party going guys!, Hey, its not my thing, but you are welcome in MIAMI!

Dave Basora
Dave Basora

Funny how people are blaming the attendees and the event itself when it was people ILLEGALLY trying to get in that did this.

Nikolas Obrenović
Nikolas Obrenović

Not really man. Its a big place. I was on the opposite side when this happened didnt find out till i saw facebook the next day. Not everyone that goes does drugs.

rdeoro28
rdeoro28

Were all the Black Friday shoppers aware of the people they trample every year so they can go get a microwave 50% off????? Miami PD should be at fault, they knew the fence needed reinforcement but all they did was "tell them" lol what an excuse.. When is they LAST time Miami PD has told you to do something & did not FORCE you to?? EXACTLY.... And word straight from Do Androids Dance user that was right infront of the stampede, "The police did nothing to stop it, they just reported on their radios & waited" 

joholso95
joholso95

Fuck you and the "it's the cops fault." The cops made an assessment on Friday afternoon. They stated that SE 1st needed more protection. That was their job: to assess, not erect fencing. The event organizers did not listen, and an innocent life is altered by broke animals who made the decision that shitty music and glitter is more important than human life. And that is the legacy of Corporate Ultra. Congrats!

jdomar
jdomar

@rdeoro28 Its a private park, genius, NOT public property. They can only make a list of recommendations, which they did, just like last year. The cops like the event b/c it pays overtime, but the rest of the city hates it.

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