Well, III Points 2016 is officially in the books. Let's hope you've been keeping up with our day-to-day reviews, but now it's time to take a step back and examine the festival from a larger perspective.
In the end, who came out on top, and who got the short end of the stick? Here are the winners and losers of III Points 2016.
The weather, surprisingly.
It's a cruel irony that the very thing that nearly derailed III Points this year — weather — turned out to be one of the most gorgeous parts of the weekend. Despite initial panic that Miami would get blasted by the powerful Hurricane Matthew, the storm missed South Florida and instead gifted us with its dry, breezy leftovers. Yes, it also claimed headliner LCD Soundsystem and a couple of other acts due to travel complications, but still, we can acknowledge the silver lining — and that silver lining is dry butt cracks. Especially after a summer that was so unrelentingly brutal in its heat, it was nice not to hear a squish every time you sat down. That happens to you too, right? Right?
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Let's face it: NASA is never going to let you in. One brief journey down your Twitter feed will prove to any recruiter that you're anything but a rocket scientist. You've retweeted Alex Jones too many times for the government to let you anywhere near the moon. Luckily you could see what it's like to visit Mars from the comfort of III Points. Mars 2030, which debuted at the festival this year, is a collaboration between Fusion media network and NASA. The virtual-reality experience, we were told, was just about the closest thing to Mars a human could experience without watching The Martian with 3D glasses in a sauna, which — we're speaking from experience — is not something the squares over at the Standard will let you do even though you've paid $200 and have been looking forward to this all month. But for those with enough patience to brave the slow-moving line, Mars 2030 turned out to be a trippy yet awesome experience and enough to satiate the astronaut inside of you.
People with small bladders.
Going to the bathroom at a music festival sucks. To empty your bladder at Ultra Music Festival, you have to create a will and testament with one of several onsite lawyers first. But peeing at III Points was straight-up lovely. By the Main Frame stage, for women, the line occasionally backed up, as women's bathroom lines tend to do, but for the most part, ample options meant attendees missed only half a song at most when nature called.
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This year, III Points rolled out its less pretentious version of a VIP ticket, called the Foresight pass. And it turned out to be well worth the price. The free booze alone would have earned it a spot on the winners' list, but the Foresight lounge offered the perfect space to unwind between sets. Let's hope it'll be back next year, because the FOMO for non-Foresight folks was real.
People with very organized schedules.
RIP to the painfully organized planners who drew up game plans the second that set times were announced because surely they've all died of stress-induced heart attacks by now. Thanks to Hurricane Matthew delays and cancellations, Friday's set times were pretty much all shifted around with little to no notice, thus rendering the tiny set-time pamphlets nothing more than shiny napkins. Saturday and Sunday also had updated set times announced only hours before doors opened.
Bartenders wouldn't even hand out cups of ice. Sorry, but there's no excuse for any festival anywhere to not have readily accessible and easy-to-use water stations — unless that festival is taking place, like, on top of a purified lake. Especially in South Florida, water should be given out like at a triathlon. The sinks in the bathroom don't cut it. People can die from lack of water at music festivals. People do die from lack of water at music festivals. Next year, give us water.
LCD Soundsystem fans.
Well, this one is obvious, but diehard LCD fans probably curled up into little balls of angst when they learned James Murphy and company wouldn't be flying to Miami thanks to hurricane delays. It hurt fans bad. But it hurt III Points worse. And if they found the strength to go on, surely you can too. In a bit of good news, LCD took to Facebook to apologize and said, "We're genuinely sorry for anyone who wanted to see us. We obviously need to figure out something in Miami when we can." So maybe you'll be seeing LCD Soundsystem after all.