Seth Toxler mixes at the Red Bull Music Academy Stage during Sunday's festival. (Elizabeth Conley / The Detroit News)
Detroit— Jake Darringer, 23, walked to a shaded, grassy area of Hart Plaza on Sunday afternoon to play hacky sack with a group of friends. But first, the Woodhaven resident had to take off his gigantic Pikachu costume head.
Nearby, friends Devon Wing and Kevin Tallent, both 21, chatted with Lauren Heck, a 22-year-old wearing a neon-colored bikini top, hot pink miniskirt and fuzzy rainbow-colored boots.
Welcome to Day 2 of the Movement electronic music festival in downtown Detroit.
“There’s nothing like this,” said Wing, who was shirtless and wearing a white bandana and blue sunglasses. “This is the big one. We wait for this every year.”
“The people are awesome, the music is good; there’s no fest like this in Detroit,” he said.
He was mad about one thing, though: the Hart Plaza water fountain wasn’t on.
“They need to turn it back on,” said Tallent, who was also shirtless. “This is perfect weather for it.”
For the 15th straight year, techno music has been taking over downtown for Memorial Day weekend.
The festival continues through Monday, with 36 hours of pounding bass and throbbing beats ready to pulsate from the heart of downtown.
More than 130 artists are performing on six stages, providing the soundtrack for a marathon party weekend, which culminates in DJ Snake, the artist behind the musical question “Turn Down for What?” taking the stage Monday at 9:30 p.m.
Fred and Debbie Costello, both of Shelby Township, were taking a break from the music Sunday afternoon near the Made in Detroit stage, which features all local artists.
The couple, who have visited the festival for the past five years, said they enjoy all the music, but try to stay by the hometown DJs.
“We have good talent here,” Debbie Costello said.
They said the weekend is a bright spot for the city.
“It’s nice that it’s in downtown Detroit,” said Fred Costello, 55. “We’ve never once felt uncomfortable.”
The Costellos had a much shorter drive to the festival than 25-year-old Garrett Ohrt. He drove more than seven hours from Madison, Wis., to see his second-straight Movement.
He said the drive was worth it.
“I like techno, and this is the place techno was born,” said Ohrt. “It’s not like any festival I’ve been to.”
Dylan Castle, 29, has been coming to Movement since it started. The Chicagoan said it’s a great platform to “hear real techno and be around compassionate people.”
His advice for any newcomers?
“Don’t make any plans,” he said. “Just go with it.”