We had gotten everything out of our friends houses and storage into our house and pretty much gotten everything out of our storage to move into the place when we realized that Phish in Denver was only a couple days away. So we spent all day getting the van ready with all of our vending supplies and cleaning out all the moving stuff. I grabbed all the nice crystal cases and our general store tubs and all the necklaces and bracelets and stacked them all in the back of the van. All of our camping gear that we had left at my parents house was over at the post box so we went and picked all that up and took what was needed.
It was about 1100 miles from South Lake Tahoe to Denver with the GPS route we calculated. Flowski took an evening nap while I finished getting everything ready and figured out what we were missing. It took longer than I thought to gather up all the loose ends but Flowski got an extra long nap so it worked out that he was not tired at all for the trip. We didn't end up leaving until about 3 AM so it was not long on the drive before it started to get light.
Flowski drove non-stop all the way to Denver and we ended up making it the night before everything got going so we had time in the morning to shop and get over to the venue before it opened and they let everyone in. We picked up an awesome variety of sodas for $5 a case. It is tough to get that kind of a deal anymore. I have seen 12-packs for $6. We also grabbed a bunch of ice along with waters Gatorades and other beverages.
We came with no tickets so our first priority once we got to the venue was to find tickets. We got the biggest run-around ever on the camping passes. We pulled up to the gate to the camping area and we tried to get camping passes. They told us to go back over to the box office around the other side of the venue. We went over to the box office and after being told they were sold out they mentioned that there were some available at the camping headquarters and gave us directions on how to get back over to the same place we just came from. We went back over to the camping area and the supervisor of the staff was extremely rude. We were told that we were not allowed to go the camping headquarters and that our only chance of getting a camping pass was back at the box office. We went back over to the box office and with no hesitation they told me to go back to the camping headquarters which is where the only remaining camping passes were. At this point in time I decided to try my luck just talking to people that were around the venue to see if there were any spares. The first person that I talked to actually had one and hooked it up for face value. There were not very many people around so after standing around for half an hour we went back over to the camping area figuring that people coming into camping may have extras. When we made it back over to the campground area, I was writing up a sign on a paper plate stating that I was looking for tickets and our good friends Jeff and Chantel pull up behind us. They had camping tickets they were not going to use and sold them to us.
When we pulled back up to the entrance to the camping and got our wristbands to go park, the police officer watching the area walked over to our vehicle and apologized for all the troubles this morning which definitely surprised me, I was not expecting that. It was a park and walk your stuff in situation kinda like Moe. Down, but it was not quite as far. You did have to get searched every time into the venue. At the beginning of the weekend they were super harsh on the searches coming in. I have been to a lot of festivals and you usually don't get a hard pat-down just trying to get into the campground.
They were really weird about the camping spots because it was very vague on the website and the staff were told to fit 2.1 people into a spot because they were trying to conserve space, but there ended up being more than enough space for everybody to camp. We came in an claimed a nice spot right on the fire-lane to vend. Thats when the staff came over and told us there would be no vending in the campground and the day lot was where shakedown should be. So we setup a quick campsite then made our way over to the day lot when it opened at 3 PM.
We got to the day parking shakedown lot at about 3:05 and it looked like we missed the good spots but when we got up close there were still plenty of space to squeeze into. We did much better here in Denver on crystals and gemstones. I think people appreciated the rocks a little more with the big gem show coming up in Denver.
Our friends Heather and Jake made it out to shakedown and hung out with us before the show and were cool enough to wait for us to pack up and we all went in together. It was really cool going in with the kids. We always end up meeting for a short time but never get to rage the show together.
The first night was epic! All the songs they played that first night started with the letter S. The show also started late because of lightning in the area so they played a nice long show.
The rest of the weekend was pretty awesome for the most part. We got in all 3 shows and partied on shakedown for the rest of the weekend. The campground turned out alright for late night beverage vending. There was a band in the campground all weekend so there were plenty of thirsty hippies wandering around to make it worth it to stay up and keep the cooler open.
We had a whole bunch of fun, made enough to get the $70 camping tickets for 3 people and $50 show tix for all 3 nights for Flowski, Dwight and I. Plus gas money to make it 1100 miles back to Tahoe. All in All I think it was a really good weekend.