With COVID-19 restrictions lifted, sporting events, such as Raiders games, Golden Knights games and even the UFC are once again in full swing, bringing in fans from far and wide. This past weekend, the Electric Daisy Carnival, commonly known as EDC, brought in over a hundred thousand people.
With large events slowly bringing back their usual massive crowds, the question now is, are people no longer fearful of COVID-19?
After speaking with EDC attendee, Anessa Abara, she discussed her take on whether COVID-19 still puts fear into attending these large events.
“Yes and no,” said Abara. “I am fully vaccinated so I know I have a lower risk of getting it, but you can never know. I knew the people I was with were fully vaccinated and/or tested negative prior to the event.”
EDC did require that all attendees show proof of vaccination status or a negative test result before providing entry to the event, and masks were strongly recommended by local and state officials.
With EDC being a three-day event, the rise in cases was potentially imminent. Yet, from Oct. 22 to 24, Clark County has seen a total of 936 cases, according to 8 News Now Las Vegas writer, Greg Haas. However, the following Monday, Oct. 25, the case total in Clark County dropped to 298.
When EDC was forced to move from its usual date in May to October because of vaccine mandates, the plan to host was not initially expected to come to fruition. The Nevada Department of Business and Industry denied the safety plan for the music festival because it did not comply with Emergency Directive 041 requirements related to capacity or social distancing.
However, on June 1, restrictions on capacity and social distancing were lifted for businesses and large gatherings, giving EDC the green light, and tickets were already sold out prior to the date change with an expected 450,000 total attendees.
For Abara, she felt this year’s EDC was not as packed compared to other years due to people skipping the event, but she did highlight that the success for EDC 2021 should translate into next year.
“This is also the first event/festival that people have been to since the pandemic, so this was an opportunity for them to experience it for the first time in a while,” Abara said. “Due to the EDC 2022 going on sale today (Oct. 28), I feel like there is no longer fear in attending large events since people think COVID will slowly die down by then.”
The reality is people want some normalcy back in their life. With cases dropping and vaccinations rising, people are willing to take these risks.
EDC provided a great example of this, demonstrating the hurdles it went through to get the largest electronic dance music festival in North America back as the top event to attend. A rise in cases can happen at any moment, and that is why state and local officials will continue to keep these large events in check.
All in all, events like EDC will be the driving force in proving whether or not people still fear COVID-19, and right now, it certainly looks like there is little to no fear.