An event company from Orlando known as The Takeover Series has a growing following and the owner said he is surprised at its popularity.
The founder, Brad Diard, 25 of Orlando, said he at first wanted to host events at Ginnie Springs because he visited a year ago and thought it was the perfect venue to set up a stage and play electronic dance music (EDM).
But he said the staff at Ginnie Springs saw his posts on social media about an EDM gathering and told him he couldn't host an event there.
By the time he removed the invite, Diard said more than 3,000 people had seen the post as it was shared over and over again.
Since he reserved the spot at the springs, he showed up anyway and set his equipment up under a tent and played his music.
People started showing up from as far away as Savannah, Georgia, Miami, and Fort Myers, he said.
And other DJs started showing up, too.
"I never planned to do an event series," he said. But added that people want to "Get out of the house" and that they "don't want to live in fear."
According to Diard, the EDM community is close-knit and has a "family feeling."
He said that during the pandemic "being around everybody helps everyone."
On local social media sites, Alachua County residents have taken notice that the capacity at Ginnie Springs fills up fast and that the music runs into the late hours.
But according to Ginnie Springs Outdoors rules, the park has a sound ordinance that shuts off music at midnight. Ginnie Springs has a High Springs mailing address but is under the jurisdiction of Gilchrist County.
Locked In Magazine online featured another DJ named Hunger Darnell in a July 25th story, "The Takevoer Series is moving forward with the new and improved Headbanger Takeover 2.0."
The article says the event at Ginnie Springs, "was the perfect getaway for some bassheads and festival goers."
According to Diard, who said he earns no money for playing EDM music as it all goes to Ginnie Springs at the admissions gate, "It's the only thing in the area open."
"We're following the rules," he said about not hosting a large event. "I show up with three people," he said and they set up equipment and play music.
But word does get out, via word of mouth, he said.
Diard spent this past weekend at Ginnie Springs and posted about his experience and his future EDM plans:
"BEST. WEEKEND. EVER. I am truly blessed to be able to create these events for you all. The amount of love and support you continue to show is unreal! I never could have dreamed I would be able to make something like this. It truly was magical looking out and seeing so much positivity and happiness. My heart is filled with joy 🥰
I promise I will not stop until The Takeover Series becomes a fully independent event/production company. One that represents the EDM community and listens to what the people want. Expect bigger productions, new locations, future vendor opportunities, live art/performances, and more.
To all of the DJs, supporters, and festival family that came out this weekend: THANK YOU!"
Diard, who works as a machinist, reiterated that he gets nothing financial out of playing music at Ginnie Springs and that he never knows when or where he will set up his music next, "I'm flying by the seat of my pants," he said.
Diard played music on the Fourth of July weekend and put on a fireworks show, he said.
Diard posted on Facebook: "I'll be at Ginnie Springs this weekend with the talented Geoshua James to celebrate the 4th of July! Come out and join us for some great music, vibes, and fireworks. We'll be in an easier location upstream in an electric/water site this time. If you wish to camp at our site, there will be an additional $25/person for the weekend paid to Geoshua to help cover the reservation cost / supplies. Let's celebrate right!"
Ginnie Springs Outdoors does not answer its phone for comment. It goes to voicemail stating that groups of 10 or larger are not permitted. Mainstreet Daily News will continue to reach out for comment and update the story.