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DMNW Picks: Pacific Northwest Alternatives for Sold-Out Music Festivals

setting sun at symbiosis festival crowd
Photo: Jacob Avanzato

Summer is slowly creeping up on us and it’s almost time to hit the road and dawn our favorite festival attire.As the electronic dance music community continues to grow so does the demand for live events, massives and festivals. Festival season undoubtedly has become synonymous with summer so it’s no surprise some of our favorite events have already reached capacity. While it’s easy to get a little bummed you may have not yet secured your own ticket, we offer a few alternatives you may not have considered…or even heard of. The Pacific Northwest is arguably one of the most beautiful parts of North America and we’re lucky to have an extensive list of festivals to pick from each year.

For a seasoned PNW veteran the obvious choices for summer usually fall onto 1 of 3 festivals; Shambhala, Paradiso and What The Festival. While each of these festivals cater to a slightly different festival goer, each one has or is expected to sell out. Shambhala will be celebrating its 20th anniversary and tickets sold out in a matter of 22 hours back in September. Paradiso tickets have yet to go on sale and WTF are currently on sale and moving quick. Our 4th pick for great PNW festivals goes to Bass Coast in Merrit, British Columbia, but even they have seen record ticket sales and sold out early.  Fear not however fellow festival friends, here’s our picks for this years festival season!

Oregon Eclipse 2017 : Aug. 17-23 – Big Summit Prairie, OR.

The Oregon based festival Symbiosis has collaborated with some of the best festivals from across the globe to bring us Oregon Eclipse 2017. Coinciding with this year’s total solar eclipse, the festival is shaping up to be one like no other. A quick look at the collaborators involved should peak the interest of any dance music fan. From Canada’s Bass Coast to the UK’s Noisily, Oregon Eclipse will be a once in a lifetime opportunity to see the creative efforts of so many wonderful events.

“The goal is not to collect names for a poster, but to create a new collaborative environment transcending nation, language, and creed. In a fragmented world, creating opportunities for the gathering of community is the most noble task we can think of and we do so with the intention to create new relationships and partnerships, visions and ideas that we could not have come up with our own.” – Oregon Eclipse

Ticketing info and more available here!

Motion Notion 2017 : Aug. 24-28 – Golden, B.C

British Columbia has no shortage of music festivals during the summer. With a list longer than we can really recall it’s easy to see why B.C. has become our second home in the last year or so. Those looking to experience the true nature of what a festival can be should look no further than Motion Notion. The event prides itself on being totally inclusive while bringing together an incredible list of local and international talent. With beautiful stages, even more beautiful people and plenty of room to dance, Motion Notion has been flying under the radar as a must attend festival for years. Make no mistake though, this is one we’d highly suggest checking out whether or not you’re looking for an alternative.

“Motion Notion lives in the heart of the beautiful Canadian Rocky Mountains near Golden, BC, and within the hearts of many in the festival culture. Those who have experienced the freedom, energy and visual and aural artistry that we and the attendees have helped create over these past 18 years can attest to its truly transformative spirit and beauty. Journey to our magical world and be delighted by some of the best musical and artistic acts on the planet in one of the most stunning settings on Earth.” – Motion Notion

Ticketing info and more available here!

Summer Meltdown 2017 : Aug. 10-13 – Darrington, WA.

Founded in back in 2000, Summer Meltdown has aimed to be a self-sustaining, eco-conscious, family friendly event. With a clear focus on its local community, Summer Meltdown is a Washington state festival we encourage everyone to give a chance at least once. It’s a great reminder that festivals don’t need the biggest names or craziest stages to be memorable. It’s an example of how the culmination of like-minded, music loving individuals can create a weekend of great vibes and memorable nights. Summer Meltdown is certainly a festival worth checking out if you feel burnt out from massive crowds of other PNW festivals.

“Summer Meltdown is known for it’s vibrant community that is open to all ages – from the kids zone, to the late night tent, to lounging in the beer garden – this festival offers fantastic experiences for everyone. Come enjoy camping in our shady grove or in our meadows with beautiful views of towering Whitehorse Mountain. Dance the night away after your daytime adventure that could include horseback riding, rock climbing, or river rafting… or just soaking in the river next to the festival during the heat of the day!” – Summer Meltdow 

Ticketing info and more available here!

Lightning in a Bottle 2017 : May 24-29 – Bradley, CA.

So this last one may not “technically” be considered a PNW festival, however it’s certainly boasting a killer lineup of artists to make it worth the drive. Aside from the already outstanding selection of musical talent LiB boasts a host of workshops, yoga, art, lectures and beautiful stages. With an ongoing effort to be as eco-friendly as possible, LiB actively seeks out ways to limit its carbon footprint without sacrificing production, sound quality or event integrity. Immerse yourself in the festivals beautifully crafted sets and stages or take in the countless pieces of art that surround the festival grounds. Lightning in a Bottle in a prime candidate for anyone’s favorite festival and it’s easy to see why.

“Lightning in a Bottle is a special place and for many who attend it’s their first festival adventure. With elements from Burning Man, Coachella and other gatherings all over the world LIB fuses live art, music, workshops and movement classes to create a fully immersive experience unlike anything else. There is no shortage of fun to be had either, whether you’re into dancing to your favorite DJs all night long or you’d rather be stretching at a sunrise yoga class there’s something for everyone here.” – Lightning in a Bottle

Ticketing info and more available here!

It’s clear the PNW has lots to offer this summer so keep that frown upside down if you missed out on securing a ticket to your favorite festival. And while there’s plenty of time to find one through alternative avenues, why not take this as an opportunity to explore new options? We’re lucky to be given so many different opportunities to get down with our friends for a weekend out of the summer each year. We encourage anyone looking for an alternative to their sold out festivals to give these, or any other PNW festival a shot…we promise you won’t be disappointed.


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Avid adventure, and full time wild thing. Lover of all types of music but hold those that make me want to shake my rumpus close to my heart.

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