After First-Year Glitches, Rise Festival To Light Up Mojave Again


Rise Festival
AP Photo/John Locher

A couple kisses before releasing a paper lantern at the RiSE Festival Saturday, Oct. 18, 2014, near Jean, Nev. Thousands of people attended the festival and released paper lanterns into the sky.

Last year's Rise Festival wasn't exactly met with rave reviews. 

Thousands were stuck out in the desert for hours, waiting on transportation back to the Gold Strike, and others were less than impressed with the collection of trash the festival left behind. 

Las Vegas Sun arts and entertainment editor Don Chareunsy told KNPR's State of Nevada that the problems took away from intent of the event.

"What was a very calm and peaceful festival ended on a very negative note," he said. "People waiting hours just to get on busses to go back to Gold Strike at Jean."

Organizers have said that those issues will be solved this year. It has been moved from the dry lake bad near Jean to Moapa River Indian Reservation and they've added parking.

For $110 a ticket, festival attendees can write their hopes and dreams on a paper lantern and watch it float into the night sky among thousands of other lighted lanterns. 

It's not a music festival, but, according to the Rise website, "an amazing experience and a spiritual journey wrapped into one."

Chareunsy said despite the problems during last year's festival, he "really enjoyed" the festival, especially the "spiritual aspect" of it.

Support comes from

"I guess the goal of the festival is fairly simple," he said. "It's a large group of people gathering in the desert and writing their hopes and their dreams and desires onto a lantern and releasing it into the Universe"

Last year's ticket sales were sold out, meaning about 10,000 people attended. This year, Chareunsy said 2,000 of last year's attendees have purchased for this year, but they were given discounted ticket prices.



Don Chareunsy, arts and entertainment editor, Las Vegas Sun 

You won’t find a paywall here. Come as often as you like — we’re not counting. You’ve found a like-minded tribe that cherishes what a free press stands for. If you can spend another couple of minutes making a pledge of as little as $5, you’ll feel like a superhero defending democracy for less than the cost of a month of Netflix.