The Mind of McL: Vegoose Cooked

It seemed to work at first, as the first Vegoose brought 36,825 visitors to the city. The report noted that 16 percent of the out-of-state attendees made their first trip to Las Vegas for Vegoose. Two-day attendance in 2006 was down more than 50 percent, with a gate of 30,625, from 72,400 in 2005. Attendance in 2007 was 46,200, according to Las Vegas Events.


When it was announced in 2005, Vegoose seemed like a ballsy way to corner the market on an unofficial jamband holiday. It quickly diversified to include acts like Tom Petty and Daft Punk, leaving little traces of 2005 in the makeover (outside of the late-nights). But that wasn’t enough, as Vegoose became the victim of an influx of new festivals from all corners of
the country drawing from a limited pool of headliners and concert goers. With these other festivals taking place closer to home, during the summer months, and with the same acts, making return trips to Vegas just weren’t as enticing. The destination lost its appeal. If every festival is bringing you the same product, do you really need to lose at the blackjack table again?

Could this mean the death of the destination festival?


Jamcruise, Jam in the Dam, and Caribbean Holidaze are holding on strong (though there wasn’t any room for Xingolati). Vegoose just couldn’t up the ante once the pool of competitors got too big.

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5 Responses

  1. The first two Vegoose festivals were unreal! First being special,
    second being great and the third well just sucked. It will be missed!

  2. They kind of mention what went wrong in the article. you moved from sure money makers that people would travel to see, like Phil Lesh, Widepread Panic, Gov’t Mule, String Cheese….to Rage Against the Machine that could barely put on an 1 hour performance….get back to jam bands or find yourself on the losing side of any future festival…

  3. Welcome aboard Jon! The jamband AND festival market have been saturated for a while. I recall selling my Telluride Bluegrass Festival tickets when the first ‘roo was announced because even though Telluride stands to be my favorite run festival ever, Bonnaroo is only 30 minutes away.

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