Date / Venue: Monday January 2nd: ASB Park Stadium, Mount Maunganui
As I watched the ASB Bay Park Stadium fill with countless amounts of energised party goers, I couldn’t help but get a wave of undoubtable excitement. Bay Dreams round 2 ladies and gentleman, and let me tell you, it was unbelievable!
As the weather forecast was set to be wet all day, there was nothing but shorts, singlets, hats and jandals to be seen as I scanned the happy crowd. After presenters Audiology and Pato Entertainment legends Mitch Lowe and Pato Alvarez sold out the first 15,000 tickets, 2 months before the much talked about summer festival, the people spoke and demanded more, with another 3000 tickets released, Bay Dreams 2017 clocked in at 18,000 for the day!
With international artists such as Yelawolf (who wants to buy a house here in NZ now), Peking Duk, and Three 3 Mafia founding member DJ Paul, it was hard to tear yourself away from the main stage. But with another 3 stages bringing you some insane beats to get us through the day, everyone made the solid effort to check them all out. With the stages being colour co-ordinated, let’s just thank the team of Bay Dreams for making that much simple for us Dreamers to get to where we needed to go. Castaway Bay had up and coming NZ hip hop boys Times x Two get the crowd hype in the afternoon, and Lunice and Krafty Kutz bringing the room to a mind blowing end! AC Slater, P Money and Concord Dawn kept the Nightmare on Dream St on lock for the night, keeping the crowd energised and ready to continue the night ahead. V Energy also had a great stage going, as LightHouse stage saw Spectrum, Skream and Eats Everything turn keep the V tradition alive and filled everyone with insane energy after leaving!
The main stage was definitely the place to be throughout the night, as every set that played on the stage set the vibe for the next act. The way each act flowed into each other was one of the highlights for me, as I felt my energy and excitement reach new level every time a new act came on. Peking Duk was by far my favourite of the night as they played such an incredible set with some great mixes including an international lion king anthem, “In the Jungle – the lion sleeps tonight” which had the crowd go absolutely mental!
As every festival goes, especially ones with the amount of people we saw at Bay Dreams, we were bound to run into a few complications and festival goer frustrations. Under the circumstances, I personally think that the only issue was the lines for the AWOP Cards, which to be honest we cannot control... people want to drink, people want to eat, and most festivals here in NZ use AWOP as it’s the most efficient way to control money in take Eftpos congestion, which we should all be aware of by now. So going into it, it was much expected to be wee line. But after last year, the Bay Dream team definitely took what the Dreamers had to say and put it all into place this year, with more staff, handling the bar, very well informed and helpful security and a more controlled sense of flow this time to get anywhere within the stadium. So in my opinion it was well organized this year.
As the weather held up for the most of the day, the rain made its yearly appearance – last year it happened too – and it has become a solid joke that the event be changed to Wet Dreams. With that being the case, no rain would let the crowd get in a bad mood. If anything it made listening to NZ boys Shapeshifter, that much more enjoyable, as most people embraced the rain and danced with their best friends to one of NZ best groups!
Kiwi sensations, Katchafire, Kora and Homebrew kept the crowd in their NZ summer feels, and with the weather holding up it was great to jam out again to NZ’s finest.
The mount is shaping up to be one of the NZ’s best summer destinations, as promoters are lining up to bring a lot talent to our country and they’re doing it right this time, with venues, staff, and sponsors all bringing their A-game and making sure us kiwis and visitors are having fun! With the warm up party taking place on the 1st, then Bay Dreams on the 2nd and the after party rolling on through till the 3rd, there is no denying that this was truly one of the best ways to bring the new year!
All in all this festival will always be one of my top, as they always continue to step up and make sure that they are pushing the boundaries for NZ Music Entertainment, and even when faced with adversity, such as artists not being able to make it into the country – Bizzy Bone – presenters, Mitch and Pato managed to lock in more international artists, showing us that they would rather go big and make a new headline than to just settle. Thank you to everyone that was involved in the running of this event! Round 3 couldn’t come sooner!