Moonrise Festival is an annual fest held at Baltimore’s Pimlico Race Course featuring EDM and hip-hop artists. The lineup this year included Zedd, Flosstradamus, Young Thug, Tyler, The Creator, Tiesto, and the Chainsmokers among many others. Reports have surfaced via the Facebook group Moonrise Festival 2016 that the security firm hired to work the festival extorted several ticketholders. As illegal substances tend to be popular at EDM events, security guards asked some ticketholders for $40 upon entry in exchange for anything illegal they had in their pockets, and took both the money and whatever they were hiding. Others reported that security guards threatened to cut their wristbands after they caught them smoking weed if they did not give them $20. Magnetic Magazine has collected numerous reports of accounts like this along with instances of fest security being negligent or worse. Now Moonrise organizers have responded in a statement via Facebook:
We are aware of the reports coming in about members of specific security teams on site acting in an unprofessional manner that would be considered unfair to our patrons and unfair to the event. We are taking these reports very seriously. We ask that anyone who had any issue with security personnel on site please contact us immediately at [email protected] with full details, including a description of the individual, what they were wearing, where the issue took place, and what happened. We have already begun an investigation with the management running each of the security teams on site. We will be addressing these issues as a whole internally and on a personal case-by-case basis with our fans.
This is not something we will be taking lightly; we spend countless hours on our security planning for this event in an effort to create a safe and comfortable environment for our fan base. We added additional management from our team to oversee the security and prevent these issues. Throughout the weekend we had management staff working to remove individuals from our security team who acted in a manner that was unprofessional. We are heartbroken to hear that our patrons were treated in a way that was less than acceptable by our standards.
Please contact us immediately so we can resolve these issues for future events – [email protected]
According to Baltimore’s Channel 13 CBS News affiliate, the fest also had 49 attendees taken to the hospital, and a fire department spokesman claims that they came into contact with over 800 patients from the festival, though there were no overdoses. Moonrise Festival plans to return in 2017.