Parookaville adds a vintage twist to modern dance music
Imagine walking into a city straight out of a fairy tale, with its own passport, church, post office and…10 festival stages? The festival experience has gone beyond anything we could have imagined, and that is thanks to the brilliant and innovative minds behind Parookaville. We Rave You journeyed to the magical festival of Parookaville this year, held once again at Airport Weeze in Germany. We were some of the 80,000 fans who attended the sold-out event, the largest electronic dance music festival in Germany.
Held across three days from July 21 to 23, we experienced some of dance music’s biggest names, with Tiësto, Axwell ^ Ingrosso, and David Guetta reigning over the mainstage. But what makes Parookaville different to the other festivals out there? It’s the uniqueness, originality and flair. The overall aesthetic of Parookaville is a blend between the imaginative vintage whimsy of Tomorrowland and the hippy/steampunk vibe of Coachella but with German twists like a beer garden. 150.000 square meters of endless fun for festival-goers with so much content it was hard to get through it all in a weekend.
Governed by principles of madness, love and pure happiness, the mega party town showcases an impressive lineup of dance music icons to commemorate the life of Bill Parooka, the fictional town’s mayor and founding father. The concentration of stars gracing the stages of Parookaville stretches from Armin van Buuren to Robin Schulz, from Steve Aoki to Sven Väth and from Paul Kalkbrenner to David Guetta.
Friday saw the likes of Showtek, Don Diablo and Armin Van Buuren while Saturday was packed with superstars Laidback Luke, KSHMR and Axwell ^ Ingrosso. Martin Solveig, NERVO and Afrojack joined the superstar list on Sunday.
A fan favorite stage on Friday was the Robin Schulz and Friends themed stage, dedicated to tropical house perfect for the summer sun. When Felix Jaehn brought out Sam Feldt during his set, it was an impromptu moment that delighted us all. Of course, the memorable beat of Kungs‘ ‘This Girl‘ made everyone dance and sing to the hit single.
David Guetta ruled the mainstage on Sunday night, with his seminal hit ‘When Love Takes Over’ prompting a singalong before an impressive drop-heavy version kicked in. An emotional moment was Showtek‘s tribute to deceased Linkin Park frontman Chester Bennington with a remix of ‘In the End.’
Parookaville is staged every year as a fictional city, complete with passports to get stamped as we entered, general stores for merch, and even a church that held Las Vegas-style weddings during the festival. Citizens need not worry about falling behind in current events as the festival also prints its very own newspaper. We camped at the expansive campgrounds adjacent to the festival grounds, and enjoyed all the amenities the fest offered, from the pool to take a dip when it got warm, to the fun fair in the staged desert, and resting in the hammocks in the forest. Adding to the excitement, attendees enjoyed several other social activities including, but not limited to, a waterslide, swimming pool, bungee jumping, bumper cars, and for the very first time in Germany’s history, a full scale rollercoaster, ready to whisk festival goers away on a winding journey.
We were sad to see the weekend come to a close but look forward to returning next year as the festival returns to Airport Weeze July 20-22, 2018. With a lineup as stacked as this year’s, it is hard to imagine anything better than returning as citizens of Parookaville for another unforgettable experience. It’s great to see festival organizers thinking of new and innovative ways to keep festival goers amused and we have to admit – Parookaville is an excellent example of that. We can’t wait to see what’s in store next year!