Updated: May 13, 2020
What happens when you team up the biggest NYE festival in the midwest with what’s been claimed to be the best leading concert venue in the midwest? The 3rd annual Snowta NYE Fest happened.
After somehow finding a place to park conveniently within blocks of the festival, while walking down the crowded streets of downtown Minneapolis, it was safe to say Snowta NYE Festival stopped traffic this past New Years' weekend. From blocks away, anyone could feel the excitement and energy that was radiating from the Armory, the location of Snowta NYE Fest this year.
For the past two years, Snowta NYE Fest was held at the Minneapolis Convention Center, but Snowta NYE Fest made the most appreciated decision to host the event at a venue that could provide Snowta NYE Fest with the environment that made the overall experience so extraordinary. Nominated for Pollstar’s Best New Concert Venue this year, the Armory is a newly renovated, 8,500 person capacity venue that substantially lived up to their reputable prominence hosting Snowta NYE Fest this year. The festival featured four stages on three levels that provided both GA and VIP attendees with awestruck views and stellar sound, no matter where you were in the venue.
Before Snowta NYE Festival this year, the Snowta Pre-Party kicked off the two-day festival at First Avenue & The 7th St. Entry, in Minneapolis, blocks away from the location of the festival. With Getter as the headliner for the evening, other artists that performed that night included a variety of MN local hip hop artists and DJs including, Shredders, Bobby Raps, and DJ Babyghost to name a few. With an assortment of local DJs, deep house, and hip hop artists opening up for a major trap artist like Getter, the crowd brought in fans of all genres of music under one roof to celebrate our love for the music. First Avenue & 7th St. Entry provided two stages for the event where you could find the headliners in the main room and a smaller stage in the Entry, a smaller venue with a 250 person capacity connected to the main room tucked away in First Avenue. Both First Avenue and the Armory are nationally recognized venues that are operated by staff and promoters who genuinely care about their patrons and fans alike and go above and beyond to ensure that everyone enjoys themselves in a safe environment. This is a crucial determining factor to the success of any festival or shows you attend, and The Armory, First Avenue, and Snowta Fest did so, respectively.
Winter Wonderland Wobbles
Walking into a venue as pristine as the Armory was truly surreal. From the production to the sound, walking into a winter wonderland of wobbles and bass has never felt so exhilarating. To witness this massive, multi-level club turn their basement, which was once a parking lot for the super bowl in 2018, into a third level of the venue for the festival that featured two stages, an arcade, a skateboard park, laser-tag, among other activities was quite impressive. Going up to the main level was another story. When you first see the main stage past these beaming, beautiful lights and felt the bass bumping to your pulse, I think I can speak for many when I say, you just knew you were about to have the time of your life.
Although there was a change in the venue hosting Snowta NYE Fest from the Minneapolis Convention Center to The Armory months after announcing the lineup, the change of the venue from the Minneapolis Convention Center to The Armory made all the difference. When announcing the change of the venue, we were promised better sound, lights, and as a result, we were provided exactly that. Hosting the festival at The Armory provided those with alternative options to upgrade their tickets to VIP, as well as reserve private suites, and booths. These enhancements gave Snowta Fest an impressive facelift that was both reasonably affordable and worth the cost.
The third and fourth level of the venue was reserved for those who acquired VIP tickets and in my opinion, was worth the upgrade. There was a second rooftop on the top level of the venue for those who wanted to go out for a smoke or hang out in the freezing cold just because, why not? Besides the fact that there were barely any lines at the bars or bathrooms on both levels, there were seating areas that were hardly crowded with an incredible view no matter where you were. The booths and private suites included bottle service hospitality and a once in a lifetime experience highly worth considering saving up for your New Years' plans this year. With attendees from overseas and all 50 states, this festival will be going on their fourth year and needless to say is flourishing fast.
As a Minnesotan native, I’d say the frigid weather accented the festival’s winter wonderland aesthetic well. To the right of the main stage, there was a rooftop where you can find one of the four other stages. Getting down to some house music surrounded by the Minneapolis skyline was more than enough to distract you from the fact it was less than 30 degrees outside.
The Sound of Snowta
The first night of the festival began Sunday, December 30th early in the evening and was packed by 8:00 at night. Middle Child took the main stage at 6:30 following MERSIV, ARMNHMR, Ghastly, and NGHTMRE. Rich the Kid was expected to perform after NGHTMRE, but due to unforeseen circumstances, Rich the Kid did not show up for his set, therefore, resulting in an extension of the set times of the artists who performed prior. Although Rich the Kid did not show up, the show carried out flawlessly. Future bass and trap sensation, Marshmello closed out the end of the first day of Snowta NYE with a worthwhile, speaker-banging set.
The lineup for the second day of Snowta consisted of a collaboration of different genres of music including hip hop and dance music which was much different compared to the first day’s consistency in trap, house, and dubstep within the lineup. Beak Nasty, Boogie T, Ganja White Night, all electronic dance artists who headlined between performances by TIIIIIIIIIIP, an MN local DJ, and rappers, Spark Master Tape and Chief Keef on the mainstage before Skrillex rang in the New Year.
New Year's Eve this year was a magical night for many. For the first time in five years, Skrillex performed in Minneapolis. Not to mention, on one of the biggest holidays of the year. While counting down to midnight, I couldn’t help but appreciate his song selection when choosing to remix his track, “With You, Friends”, a personal favorite song of mine. Skrillex performed a breathless, melodic set with entrancing visuals that would leave anyone speechless. Once it struck midnight, Skrillex kicked off 2019 with an energetic and noteworthy hour and a half set that wrapped up day two of the 3rd annual Snowta NYE Festival.