By Erika Wegener
SnowGlobe isn’t the typical sun-drenched summer music festival—it rings in the New Year at a snowy South Lake Tahoe.
If you’re looking for a music festival with sunshine and a warm summer breeze, you’d be in the wrong place at South Lake Tahoe’s second annual SnowGlobe Music Festival. The three-day festival takes place at the tiny Lake Tahoe Community College, protected from the world by snow covered pine trees, and ends by ringing in the new year. It’s a little out of the ordinary for a music festival, but that’s precisely why people are so intrigued. Locals and out-of-towners alike have packed up their cars and headed to the lake. While the usual glow sticks and crazy outfits are still abundant, more people are bundled up in their snow clothes, trying to keep warm on frigid Tahoe nights.
The venue is not too different from that of a typical festival, with three stages set up. Tents cover two of them in an attempt to keep the audience warm, and the third is a large main stage on the college’s football field. The decor is winter-themed, with a large snowflake flashing different colors at each entrance and exit. Crowds of people surround the heat lamps placed around the food tents, which all seem to be serving hot food. SnowGlobe is small in comparison to many other festivals, but it managed to sell out this year, attracting experienced festival-goers and first-timers alike. As one longtime music festival fan puts it, “I’ll admit, out of all the festivals I’ve been to, I’ve never had to wear snow pants under my tutu!”
Of the performers, electronic artists and DJs were in the majority with such artists as Minnesota, Clockwork and Deadmau5 playing, but there were a few others in between like indie band Poliça, hip-hop duo Zion I, and the first night’s headliner, rapper Wiz Khalifa. Though SnowGlobe was overall a great event, the cold of winter did cause a few problems. Wiz spent most of his time under the heat lamp on stage. Deadmau5 was visibly freezing, jumping around and rubbing his hands together, and later referred to Tahoe as “Planet Hoth”—the wintery planet from the Star Wars universe—on Twitter. The festival’s final set was Chromeo, who brought the festival into 2013 with fireworks and urged everyone to “Turn to the person next to you and give them a new year’s kiss.” The funk duo proclaimed that being from Montreal, Canada prepared them for the icy temperature.
SnowGlobe experienced some non-weather-related problems too, possibly due to being a grassroots event. The festival often had too few shuttles taking shivering fans back to their hotels. However, one benefit did come from the slight lack of organization. Fans were able to bond while trading kandi bracelets, chatting eagerly about their favorite sets, and huddling together while they awaited transportation through four feet of chilly, glittering snow.