Organizers of the Further Future music festival have dropped plans to hold their inaugural event at an old mine near Lake Mead in the wake of complaints from federal land managers.
Instead, the invitation-only festival for as many as 5,000 people will be held May 1-3 on the Moapa River Indian Reservation along Interstate 15, about 40 miles northeast of Las Vegas.
The site won’t look quite like the beautiful landscapes shown on Further Future’s slick website, but it will help avoid federal trespassing charges.
Early this month, both the National Park Service and the Bureau of Land Management denied the festival a commercial use permit for roads crossing public land to the privately owned Anniversary Mine, a 215-acre tract just outside the boundary of Lake Mead National Recreation Area 35 miles east of Las Vegas.
Then, just in case there was any lingering confusion, the BLM’s Las Vegas field manager, Gayle Marrs-Smith, sent a strongly worded letter to the mine’s owner and the festival’s attorney warning against using the site and treating the resulting fines and penalties as another “business cost” for Further Future.
“Any trespass on public lands, or degradation or damage to the public lands, would result in financial penalties, civil action or criminal charges under applicable federal law or regulation,” Marrs-Smith said in her April 15 letter.
Until this week, the festival’s website carefully avoided identifying a specific location for the event. But all the permits sought were for the Anniversary Mine site.
Then came news Friday afternoon that Further Future planned to withdraw its application for a county permit for the mine site, prompting speculation the event would be moved to an alternate site on tribal land where no such approvals are required.
Billed as “a shared experience that’s beyond our future,” Further Future promises a “carefully curated” slate of musicians, business and cultural leaders, chefs, mixologists and masseuses.
The nonstop, three-day party is the brainchild of a group called Robot Heart, an art and music collective known for its parties during the annual Burning Man counterculture gathering in Northern Nevada’s Black Rock Desert.
Further Future is only open to invited guests and successful applicants age 21 and older who “share our sense of mindfulness and optimism, and will bring great energy, love and respect to our gathering,” the website says.
Attendees are encouraged to dress in costume as their Further Future selves. The two cheapest tiers of tickets have now sold out at $200 and $250 each, as have several of the “boutique camping options.”
The slate of entertainment includes several dozen musical acts, including some widely known names on the electronic, ambient and dance music scenes. Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh and other leaders from business, tech, art and science are scheduled to speak during the event’s “Vision Series” on May 2.
All of this is now slated to unfold on vacant land controlled by the Moapa Band of Paiutes just off the I-15 exit for Ute, about five miles north of the exit for the Moapa Paiute Travel Plaza and Valley of Fire State Park.
The tribe has about 350 people, roughly 200 of whom live on the 75,000-acre Moapa River Indian Reservation.
Contact Henry Brean at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-383-0350. Find him on Twitter: @RefriedBrean.