EDM fans at Crush Arizona in 2016.EXPAND
EDM fans at Crush Arizona in 2016.
Benjamin Leatherman

Crush Arizona 2017: A Field Guide to Saturday's EDM Festival at Rawhide

As any local scene kid will tell you, Crush Arizona is one of the biggest and longest-running dance music festivals in the Valley. The annual Valentine’s-themed event, which has been around since 2008, regularly attracts more than 10,000 eager dance music fans, many of whom come dressed as Cupid or in other love-inspired costumes or attire (read: lingerie, humorous T-shirts, and heart-shaped sunglasses).

And they also come to rage and get rowdy amid giant inflatable hearts decorating a ginormous tent-like structure. Needless to say, Crush is one of the more unique EDM events in the Valley. It’s also a labor of love for co-promoter Thomas Turner of Relentless Beats fame, who’s been putting on the event since he launched it nine years ago at Stratus.

“I love doing it,” Turner says. “It’s something that’s become very dear to me, because I came up with the concept all on my own without the influence of others. For that reason, there will always be a [piece] of me that feels special about it.”

And, believe us, Crush Arizona has become something special, not to mention enormous.

The scene at Crush Arizona in 2015.
The scene at Crush Arizona in 2015.
Benjamin Leatherman

It’s grown tenfold over the last decade, outgrowing its previous venues, and now takes place at Rawhide Event Center in Chandler, and features a slew of top-shelf DJs and dance music artists. (It's even expanded to other states, as spinoff events are held in both California and Texas.)

This year’s edition of Crush Arizona, which happens on Saturday, February 18, will be its biggest yet and include performances from Black Tiger Sex Machine, DVBBS, Yellow Claw, W&W, and other blockbuster EDM acts.

Here's a rundown of everything you need to know before you go.

When and Where: Crush Arizona takes place on Saturday, February 18, at Rawhide Event Center, 5700 West North Loop Road in Chandler. Doors at 5 p.m. and the festival goes hard until 2:30 a.m.

Prices:General admission is $63 while VIP tickets are available to those 21 and older for $109 and include such perks as express entry, a souvenir lanyard, a private viewing area, hors d'oeuvres, and a complimentary drink.

Age Limits: The festival is open to anyone 18 and over. You have to be at least 21 to drink alcohol, however.

Crush Arizona co-headliners Black Tiger Sex Machine.EXPAND
Crush Arizona co-headliners Black Tiger Sex Machine.
John Londono

The Lineup: Performances will begin at 5:30 p.m. and include sets by Black Tiger Sex Machine, Chris Lorenzo, DVBBS, Jason Ross, W&W, Yellow Claw, GTA, and SAYMYNAME.

Getting There: Take the eastbound Interstate 10 to Exit 162 (Wild Horse Pass Road/Sundust Road) and hang a right. Eventually, you'll want to turn left onto Sundust Road and follow the signs. Or you could just follow the sound of pounding beats.

Parking: It's $10 per vehicle.

Weather: Have a jacket or a hoodie handy, as temperatures will be in the 50s and 60s and there's also a chance of rain.

Food and Drink: There will be bars for those over 21, and food vendors and trucks for anyone who’s hungry.

Water: A free water station will be available, and reusable aluminum bottles and Camelbak-style water bladders, both of which must be empty when entering the event, are permitted. Vendors will also have water for sale.

Peace, love, and EDM at last yea's Crush Arizona.EXPAND
Peace, love, and EDM at last yea's Crush Arizona.
Benjamin Leatherman

Bring:Your government-issued ID and a fully-charged cellphone, for starters. Items like bandana, small bags, and earplugs are also recommended. And most of the hallmarks of any sort of EDM fest are permitted, such as festival totems, glow sticks, LED hula hoops and poi, flags and banners, furry backpacks, fuzzy boots, animal hats, and pretty much ever kind of colorful getup you’d see at a rave.

Don’t Bring: Any of the usual items that are forbidden at a music or EDM festival, including illegal substances, drug paraphernalia, lasers, weapons (toy versions or otherwise), eye drops, outside food or drink, posters, large purses, open packs of cigarettes or tampons, or large bags. LED gloves are also verboten, which means no light shows, as are Native American headdresses.

DJ duo Yellow Claw, who will close out this year's Crush Arizona.EXPAND
DJ duo Yellow Claw, who will close out this year's Crush Arizona.
Romy Treebusch

Schedule: Want to know when a particular artist will be doing their thing? Check out the following set times for this year's festival:

5:00 p.m.: Doors open
5:25 p.m. - 6:25 p.m.: Chris Lorenzo
6:25 p.m. - 7:25 p.m.: SAYMYNAME
7:25 p.m. - 8:25 p.m.: Jason Ross
8:30 p.m. - 9:25 p.m.: Black Tiger Sex Machine
9:30 p.m. - 10:40 p.m.: GTA
10:45 p.m. - midnight: DVBBS
12:05 a.m. - 1:20 a.m.: W&W
1:25 a.m. - 2:30 a.m.: Yellow Claw
2:30 a.m.: Event ends

Editor's Note: This story has been updated with additional event info since its original publication.

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