Yeh it was great, I certainly learned a few things about how some groups like to act from their behavior.
It was meant to be a 3 day festival starting from new years eve to january 2nd (running till 6pm or so). The first night ran somewhat as planned with 2 stages (the facebook event said there was going to be 3, but that's not really a big issue). There were about 400 people with the main dancefloor being absolutely packed at peak time (4am new years day).
here's a video from new years eve in the late afternoon.
Then the next morning at about 10am the local park rangers and police arrived at the request of the local hicks. In total I think there were somewhere between 7-20 locals/regular campers that were accross the other side of the river about 1.5-2km away. They seemed very distrustful and disrespectful of our presence and were complaining to the rangers about the stupid doof doof music. The rangers were extremely unhelpful and claimed a bunch of things that were mostly not true. Like for one claiming the organisers needed public liability insurance despite the fact that the party was free and therefore not actually a business or organized in that way whatsoever. It is after all no different to 4 people turning up with a car stereo and camping somewhere, just on a slightly larger scale. They also claimed that there was lots of rubbish everywhere despite the event organisers providing bins that everyone used and when prompted the rangers couldn't actually point out any rubbish that was outside of a bin/tent. It goes without saying the beer drinking locals however did not have the same respect for the enviroment; which ofcourse also had a blind eye turned to it by the rangers.
Apparently though they then claimed that we were breaking the total fire ban, despite the fact there were maybe 3-4 people doing that out of 100s, and the bogans across the river were actually lighting big bonfires which the rangers seemed to not care about. Fucking hypocrites. So basically the 2 main stages got shut down during the day and a lot of people left. There were still about 200 in total however.
Later on at around 10pm someone else started up a fairly medium sized stage (maybe with speakers at about 1/2 the size or volume of the one in the video) about 200m from the original main stage. After a couple of hours that was kicking off pretty well and an hour later the local cops came (but not the rangers) and simply told us to turn it down. Which we did (a little) and then the cops didn't come back. That's usually what police did when they come to raves/warehouse parties/similar in Melbourne, that or they simply come, take a look and then don't come back. That stage kept on rocking till about 2pm the next day and apart from a 10ish hour break during the 2nd day the party went pretty well.
That said, when I went to overhear the rangers talking to the locals they were seriously total ****s. They were sitting there talking about how great it is to fine people and when the locals saw that I was listening to them talking to the rangers they were constantly giving me the "go away" look. Justice is meant to be public after all so I think those guys can just get over being overheard. I think honestly it was pretty selfish that 7-20 people felt the need to complain about music that was for 400+ people when 98% of the rest of that river was perfectly quiete and they could've moved a little further away and been fine. I overheard the main group of people bitching to the rangers saying they were actually 5km from the main stage. "New years even ruined" my ass.
There's also this article which lays out what the event organisers said to the journalist in the original article.
How was everyone else's new years by the way? Mine was pretty great musically and socially but I think I've overheard enough talk of the healing powers of a certain friend of a friend of mine's crystal candles for the rest of my life.
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