This was the first of two big Easter weekend raves, taking place in a castle just outside Newry, N.I.
It was hosted by AVA Festival, who's main event takes place 2nd-3rd June @ T13, Belfast. The organisers always try and make their events stand out from the rest and this was an exceptional location for a dance music event, with a large tent outside and rooms in the underground areas of the castle also being used.
I came up the night before to get some pre-event images before the crowds showed up. The shot I took below wasn't really planned; I was leaving and noticed that you could see the stars through the clouds. So I took a few long exposure shots (30 seconds) with the help of my tripod.
The event was taking place from 2pm, until 11pm that night, so I arrived down during the afternoon and was lucky enough to have the sun come out, which was a big help for atmosphere. There were two areas for DJ's; the large tent outside and a basement room inside the castle. Both areas were in use all day, so the crowd could move from one to the other, with food stands, bars to keep them occupied in between.
There was also a 'chill space' which is a great idea that allows people to take themselves away from the music and noise and chill out on a beanbag when it all gets a little much.
The DJ's in the tent played mostly house music, with the basement room offering a harder choice of techno. So the music had something for most people to enjoy. With local DJ's Inside Moves playing the start and end set of the main tent. Tijana J closed the basement room, who is a techno DJ from Serbia, showing that it wasn't just a local affair, as well as Auntie Flo playing the main tent in the afternoon
The atmosphere throughout the day was great; it was mix of high quality dance music, paired with the relaxing setting of a castle grounds, which allowed people to sit on the grass outside in the sun and take it all in.
It's a perfect warm up for the AVA Festival this June, with events taking place @ T13 in Belfast over 2nd & 3rd June.