Downtown Full Moon Party does spirituality, Miami style

The monthly Downtown Full Moon Party is ostensibly a holistic journey geared to getting our earthly bodies closer to their spiritual being so they can harmoniously connect with the rhythms of the universe. But it's really just another excuse to get shit-faced and watch some dude swing a stick of fire.

"We don't have to constantly practice spirituality to be a spiritual being," the party's organizer, Fritz E. Romeus, says. "One just needs to believe and strive for oneness. The full moon tends to drive this message home, and that's why we celebrate its coming."

Romeus, who is in the marketing and promotion business, and a couple of his friends started the festival this past June and plan to hold the event every month. Next month's event falls on September 11.

August's festival took place at the Miami Art Space on NW 35th Street, which is not far from Miami International Airport. Tough to find total astral consciousness when jumbo jets roar overhead every 15 minutes.

But I'd give it a shot anyway. The full moon is traditionally associated with high crime rates, heightened fertility, and lycanthropes running amok. Hell, there would be booze, women, and revelry at this thing. And there would be performers and tarot card readers. So I ventured forth.

Ignoring the woman at the entrance asking for a $10 donation (poster said, "free," lady), I walked into MAS, passed a scantily clad belly dancer standing around like she was waiting for a bus, and went looking for lunatics and werewolves. What I found was a party like any other Friday-night party. Except this one had fire and drummers. It was a club party disguised as a full-moon festival.

There was a drum circle. Well, it was really more of a drum semicircle — a drum shoehorn, if you will. There was a bonfire. It was a 95-degree evening with sweltering, suffocating midsummer mugginess. But fuck it. You gotta have a goddamn bonfire at one of these things.

There were plenty of candles, incense, beads, mood rings, and sundry new-agey merchandise being sold on tables scattered throughout the venue. There were people — some looking like they were tripping serious balls­ — laid out on couches and beanbag chairs. There was music booming. There were white people with dreads. And, yup, the moon was full. It's a full-moon party. Let's do this, I thought.

First things first. Shuffling through the crowd that clogged the air-conditioned art gallery, I made my way toward the bar. Scotch neat for me. And then it was off to find oneness with the universe.

Outside in the open courtyard, a fire performer did his thing. His baton was lit aflame on either end. He swung it back and forth across his bare chest, his muscular arms pivoting the stick in swift, dangerous rings. Holy shit, he's fantastic, I thought. Holy shit, he looks exactly like Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra!

The DJ spun a tribal tune as the crowd cheered every impressive swirl and spin. Erik Spoelstra Fire Performer breathlessly traversed the courtyard while swinging his fire stick, each fluctuation sending bright red-orange waves across the darkness.

The impressive routine abruptly ended when a woman emerged from the crowd to say something to Erik Spoelstra Fire Performer. He inexplicably handed her two chains with flaming balls on each end. She began to swing them. She wasn't as adept. She labored to swerve the chains in proper circles. Excitement turned to angst when one of the chains slipped from her hand and slid into the crowd, almost burning a guy's foot.

The fire baton was placed on the ground, and moments later, an attractive girl wearing nothing but striped panties and a shredded black shirt that clearly revealed her breasts began to seductively dance around it. Fire Dance Girl sat on the ground and stretched a leg toward her head. Then she jumped to all fours, arched her back, and moved her body to the DJ's rhythm. This immediately caught everyone's attention, mostly the men. Because, titties!

She pounced with full-body lunges and made her way around the circle, tantalizingly moving with the music as if trying to sexually arouse the flames from the stick. Her performance was brief, but provocative all the same. As she faded into the shadows, the music became festive again, and folks were brought back to Party Mode. I looked for Fire Dance Girl so I could introduce myself and get an interview for this piece. But mainly to introduce myself. I lost her in the crowd.

Off in a corner by one of the food carts, two dudes randomly started some sort of dance-off. Their bodies flailed in every direction as a small crowd gathered to watch. It was a spaz-dance fight! But they weren't performers. Just two guys fightin' for their right to party.

It was clear that the mystical part of the fest began and ended with the fire dancers. The drummers did their part to keep things spiritual, but in the end it was just a bunch of dudes endlessly banging on drums in front of drunk people.

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8 comments
Steviehallandale
Steviehallandale

I would give that "belly dancer" a bus ride anyday! =) and the article missed my favorite part of the evening, Acroyoga!

Fritz "e"
Fritz "e"

This article is written with a great deal of immaturity and it is so far off the grid that I feel compelled to make a very long comment here... The Miami Newtimes needs to hire smarter critics who are not just trying to make fans with reality TV like scripts, but instead to state the real facts the way they are meant to be presented. It would be safe to say that the critic (Chris Joseph) was definitely at the “downtown FULL MOON party”, but to say that "He got it!", that would be a Nahhhh!

The "downtown FULL MOON party" started with an hour long Flying Thai Yoga class (Acrobatic Yoga), which was offered to the guests for free. The background music for the class was chilled, Buddah Bar type sound. The Yoga class was followed by an Afro-cuban Latin Indie band (Elastic Bond), which attracted over 150 people in the inside gallery area. Outside in the courtyard there were vendors with vegeterian treats; healthy indonesian cuisine; fresh coconut juice served from the actual cococuts; hemp clothing; jewelry; soy candles, etc... One side of the courtyard had most of the performances which included a couple of "really, really talented" Fire and AcroYoga performers; a former Moulin Rouge Burlesque Dancer; a contortionist; a professional sax player, an incredibly talented bongo player, and tribal house beats by two top deejays. The other side of the patio had a strong spiritual vibe with about 20 - 25 drummers; a fire pit; and people dancing around the fire with the drumming which started at midnight sharp and continued uninterruptedly until about 2:45 a.m. The party ended at 3 a.m. with over 80 guests still at the venue being asked to leave (it's closing time!)...

Now, a few myths from the article that I would like to defunk...

>>Critic: Ignoring the woman at the entrance asking for a $10 donation (poster said, "free," lady)...>>ME: The poster at the front gate read: "Admission is free. However, we'd appreciate a $10 Donation per person to help cover our expenses and keep the event going..." The budget to put that event together is close to $10 thousand dollars (no joke… we had to pay a hefty venue rental fee!). Those who cannot make a donation are always welcomed in our event as equally as to those who can... For those who are able to donate, we thank them for their support and everyone for their participation... Plus, we gave away a beautiful necklace (retailing for $20) designed by an admirer of the event to each person who gave a $10 donation (what a deal!). So, again the critic doesn't get it, and takes pride in "ignoring the woman at the entrance". (To critic): Have you ever consider writing a piece about those big nightclubs charging $40/person for admission alone, just to hit them inside with $18 vodka & redbull, or $28 glass of champagne? People are complaining about this all the time and those establishments don't offer even a fraction of the energy and entertainment that one would find at the "downtown FULL MOON party". Noooo, you want to stay in good terms with the big boys, don't ya? We are asking for a "voluntary" donation Dude... Get it!!!

>>Critic: There was a drum circle. Well, it was really more of a drum semicircle — a drum shoehorn, if you will. There was a bonfire.>>ME: Full moon is not about a "drum circle" or "semicircle", or even a "shoehorn" circle... It's about drumming and rhythm (if you got any). There were about 25 drummers (not in a circle) doing their thang for over 2 and a half hour and people dancing around the firepit; not a "bonfire"... learn the difference!

>>Critic: There were people — some looking like they were tripping serious balls­ — laid out on couches and beanbag chairs.>>ME: Seriously? Were you at the same event? Duuuude, we don't have a drug, “tripping serious balls” crowd... the party is far off the drug scene and the "getting shit faced" immaturity... Check the link below for photos from the party to see if your "Inquirer wanna know" comment has any substance attached to it.

>>Critic: The fire baton was placed on the ground, and moments later, an attractive girl wearing nothing but striped panties and a shredded black shirt that clearly revealed her breasts began to seductively dance around it... This immediately caught everyone's attention, mostly the men. Because, titties!>>ME: Such maturity... Again, you are making things up (check photos). That performer did not show her naked breast, although there wouldn't be anything wrong with that picture for those who would see it as beauty instead of "oooh... tittties". Check the photos in the album with the link provided below and show me "titties". She was wearing a matching skin colored nylon bra and the performance was not about nudity... Oh no, you didn't get that either?

>>Critic: Full-moon festivals for years have been a ritualistic gathering in Miami. Most of them take place on the beach, where participants can commune with the ocean and moon, away from noise and traffic.>>ME: Okay, this one doesn't make any sense on all levels. First of all you don't need a beach to have a Full Moon party. Do they have beaches in Las Vegas? Does that mean they cannot have a "real" Full Moon party there. Secondly, I have been living in Miami for almost 2 decades and I cannot remember when Miami had an official, regular full moon party with the blessing of the city. The only thing ritualistic about those gatherings are the usual break-ups by the Miami Beach Police, and the organizers constantly panicking and trying to score new locations. Newtimes even published an article back in February: "Miami Beach's Full Moon Drum Circles Threatened By Noise, Drugs, Cops", which illustrates my points above. So, which "ritualistic gathering" is the critic referring to? Also, did any of our guests hear street noise and traffic at the location where we held our "downtown FULL MOON party"? So, why that comment? Like most every other point in the article, it is baseless!

>>Critic: This Downtown Full Moon Party was an odd marriage of trendy revelers and holistic seekers, and it killed any vibe you might get at a traditional full-moon party.>>ME: Alright, this one takes the cake!!! For someone to be a good critic, he/she should have a precise understanding and fundamental knowledge of the subject he/she is writing about. What exactly is the definition of a "traditional full-moon party"? The biggest one to fall into this category is the world renowned Full Moon party in Thailand. Oh my! Now we are talking about a 24-hour beach masquerade with over 60,000 people; about 2 dozen huge music stages with all types of electronic music including techno; vendors galor; alcohol buckets and enough drugs to kill the habitants of an entire small island. Another ritualistic and spiritual gathering is the famous Burning Man in the Nevada Dessert, which hosts over 80,000 people during a week long festival; has over two-dozen gigantic open-air clubs with top international deejays and 24-hour music programming. Comparing to those events, we are just an ant (a strong ant). However, the concept rings the same and for those who get it, they are welcome to join us at our not-so traditional gathering.

In closing, I would like to say that I do enjoy criticism of my work when they are based on facts and especially when the critic suggests some sort of solution for me to improve on my shortfalls. As a critic, when you set out with the pre-notion of writing a smart ass piece because that's "what the editor wanted", not using facts, and criticizing the bad without commenting on the good, that’s just simply “crap” journalism... You should apologize for your lack of insight, biased, and opinionated article…

To preview what the “downtown FULL MOON party” is all about, check out these photos: https://www.facebook.com/media...

Cuma
Cuma

Yeah he was probably the douche walking around w a blazer on!

MsMimi
MsMimi

Sounds like a very immature person wrote this article, who only really cares about is titties!

Mike Merdian
Mike Merdian

I can't even begin to tell you how this was in no way, shape, or form a full moon party. To start off, as we walked up to the rope, from across the street the door guy with the bad English accent was already complaining about our group of friends, "First of all there is 2 no and 3 maybe" WTF and then begins to tell us we would be the first ones to complain about a shitty party, couldn't this guy wait till we walked up to him instead of shouting at us from across the street. It was comical to listen to him have a titty attack about real Full Mooners showing up. We came for a full moon party and turned out to be a douche party with cheap tricks. On the up side, the place is nice and that’s about it.

Fritz "e"
Fritz "e"

This article is written with a great deal of immaturity and it is so far off the grid that I feel compelled to make a very long comment here... The Miami Newtimes needs to hire smarter critics who are not just trying to make fans with reality TV like scripts, but instead to state the real facts the way they are meant to be presented. It would be safe to say that the critic (Chris Joseph) was definitely at the “downtown FULL MOON party”, but to say that "He got it!", that would be a Nahhhh!

The "downtown FULL MOON party" started with an hour long Flying Thai Yoga class (Acrobatic Yoga), which was offered to the guests for free. The background music for the class was chilled, Buddah Bar type sound. The Yoga class was followed by an Afro-cuban Latin Indie band (Elastic Bond), which attracted over 150 people in the inside gallery area. Outside in the courtyard there were vendors with vegeterian treats; healthy indonesian cuisine; fresh coconut juice served from the actual cococuts; hemp clothing; jewelry; soy candles, etc... One side of the courtyard had most of the performances which included a couple of "really, really talented" Fire and AcroYoga performers; a former Moulin Rouge Burlesque Dancer; a contortionist; a professional sax player, an incredibly talented bongo player, and tribal house beats by two top deejays. The other side of the patio had a strong spiritual vibe with about 20 - 25 drummers; a fire pit; and people dancing around the fire with the drumming which started at midnight sharp and continued uninterruptedly until about 2:45 a.m. The party ended at 3 a.m. with over 80 guests still at the venue being asked to leave (it's closing time!)...

Now, a few myths from the article that I would like to defunk...

>>Critic: Ignoring the woman at the entrance asking for a $10 donation (poster said, "free," lady)...>>ME: The poster at the front gate read: "Admission is free. However, we'd appreciate a $10 Donation per person to help cover our expenses and keep the event going..." The budget to put that event together is close to $10 thousand dollars (no joke… we had to pay a hefty venue rental fee!). Those who cannot make a donation are always welcomed in our event as equally as to those who can... For those who are able to donate, we thank them for their support and everyone for their participation... Plus, we gave away a beautiful necklace (retailing for $20) designed by an admirer of the event to each person who gave a $10 donation (what a deal!). So, again the critic doesn't get it, and takes pride in "ignoring the woman at the entrance". (To critic): Have you ever consider writing a piece about those big nightclubs charging $40/person for admission alone, just to hit them inside with $18 vodka & redbull, or $28 glass of champagne? People are complaining about this all the time and those establishments don't offer even a fraction of the energy and entertainment that one would find at the "downtown FULL MOON party". Noooo, you want to stay in good terms with the big boys, don't ya? We are asking for a "voluntary" donation Dude... Get it!!!

>>Critic: There was a drum circle. Well, it was really more of a drum semicircle — a drum shoehorn, if you will. There was a bonfire.>>ME: Full moon is not about a "drum circle" or "semicircle", or even a "shoehorn" circle... It's about drumming and rhythm (if you got any). There were about 25 drummers (not in a circle) doing their thang for over 2 and a half hour and people dancing around the firepit; not a "bonfire"... learn the difference!

>>Critic: There were people — some looking like they were tripping serious balls­ — laid out on couches and beanbag chairs.>>ME: Seriously? Were you at the same event? Duuuude, we don't have a drug, “tripping serious balls” crowd... the party is far off the drug scene and the "getting shit faced" immaturity... Check the link below for photos from the party to see if your "Inquirer wanna know" comment has any substance attached to it.

>>Critic: The fire baton was placed on the ground, and moments later, an attractive girl wearing nothing but striped panties and a shredded black shirt that clearly revealed her breasts began to seductively dance around it... This immediately caught everyone's attention, mostly the men. Because, titties!>>ME: Such maturity... Again, you are making things up (check photos). That performer did not show her naked breast, although there wouldn't be anything wrong with that picture for those who would see it as beauty instead of "oooh... tittties". Check the photos in the album with the link provided below and show me "titties". She was wearing a matching skin colored nylon bra and the performance was not about nudity... Oh no, you didn't get that either?

>>Critic: Full-moon festivals for years have been a ritualistic gathering in Miami. Most of them take place on the beach, where participants can commune with the ocean and moon, away from noise and traffic.>>ME: Okay, this one doesn't make any sense on all levels. First of all you don't need a beach to have a Full Moon party. Do they have beaches in Las Vegas? Does that mean they cannot have a "real" Full Moon party there. Secondly, I have been living in Miami for almost 2 decades and I cannot remember when Miami had an official, regular full moon party with the blessing of the city. The only thing ritualistic about those gatherings are the usual break-ups by the Miami Beach Police, and the organizers constantly panicking and trying to score new locations. Newtimes even published an article back in February: "Miami Beach's Full Moon Drum Circles Threatened By Noise, Drugs, Cops", which illustrates my points above. So, which "ritualistic gathering" is the critic referring to? Also, did any of our guests hear street noise and traffic at the location where we held our "downtown FULL MOON party"? So, why that comment? Like most every other point in the article, it is baseless!

>>Critic: This Downtown Full Moon Party was an odd marriage of trendy revelers and holistic seekers, and it killed any vibe you might get at a traditional full-moon party.>>ME: Alright, this one takes the cake!!! For someone to be a good critic, he/she should have a precise understanding and fundamental knowledge of the subject he/she is writing about. What exactly is the definition of a "traditional full-moon party"? The biggest one to fall into this category is the world renowned Full Moon party in Thailand. Oh my! Now we are talking about a 24-hour beach masquerade with over 60,000 people; about 2 dozen huge music stages with all types of electronic music including techno; vendors galor; alcohol buckets and enough drugs to kill the habitants of an entire small island. Another ritualistic and spiritual gathering is the famous Burning Man in the Nevada Dessert, which hosts over 80,000 people during a week long festival; has over two-dozen gigantic open-air clubs with top international deejays and 24-hour music programming. Comparing to those events, we are just an ant (a strong ant). However, the concept rings the same and for those who get it, they are welcome to join us at our not-so traditional gathering.

In closing, I would like to say that I do enjoy criticism of my work when they are based on facts and especially when the critic suggests some sort of solution for me to improve on my shortfalls. As a critic, when you set out with the pre-notion of writing a smart ass piece because that's "what the editor wanted", not using facts, and criticizing the bad without commenting on the good, that’s just simply “crap” journalism... You should apologize for your lack of insight, biased, and opinionated article…

To preview what the “downtown FULL MOON party” is all about, check out these photos: https://www.facebook.com/media...

Fritz "e"
Fritz "e"

Hey Mike,

You must be a decoy or someone who just want to bash a party for your own personal reasons... Also, It is most likely that you were not at the downtown FULL MOON party because we didn't have a door guy with an English accent and in no way, shape, or form that we refused people at the door or have any sort of attitude. There were two off-duty police officers in the street in front of the venue; one girl inside at the front after the guests walking through the gate (Again, NO DOORMAN!); and one security guard assisting the girl up front, but him staying in the background and occasionally helping people exiting... Seriously, you must have gone to another event... For people who spend a lot of time making this party happened, it's not fair and for those who haven't been to the FULL MOON party and could greatly enjoyed themselves, you are totally trying to do them a disservice. By the way, who are the "real Full Mooners"? Oh no! the Honey Mooners are throwing a douche party with cheap tricks and calling it a "full moon party"... GET REAL!!!

If you really want to see what people are saying about the party, just check the event page on Facebook! Also, the photos says a lot... Check out our past events and we'll be posting new photos soon to show what the "downtown FULL MOON party" is all about...

Come to think of it, you might have gone to VILLA 221... The event was moved to a new venue (Miami Art Space) in Wynwood. Unless you were there, you must have not known about the location change... If so, I would like to say sorry for your experience and missing out on the party.

Regards,

Fritz "e"

 
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