Star Wars In The Desert [Update]

Image: Mixmag

Image: Mixmag

A Star Wars themed rave in the desert? Sounds like a good idea to me.


Fest300 brings us the exciting news:


At last...a festival with lightsabers and lasers in equal supply. Celebrating its second outing this past February, the Les Dunes Electroniques Festival returned to the dunes of southern Tunisia to a crowd of cosmopolitan locals and adventurous Star Wars fans



Before you pack up your costumes and catch the next plane to Africa, you might want to actually watch the videos. I don’t see much Star Wars going on. All I count is one Darth Vader mask, and zero lightsabers and lasers.

Image: Paris Bouge

Image: Paris Bouge

Tunisia is the place George Lucas chose to be the planet Tatooine in his movies, and it is also being used by JJ Abrams in the new installment. The location of this set is close to where the rave takes place. It seems that Fest300 is stretching this connection to call it a Star Wars-inspired EDM festival.

Mixmag offers us more useful information:

At the end of last month thousands flooded to the Dunes Electroniques festival, which is nestled away in Nefta in Tunisia, also the place where parts of Star Wars were filmed.

The festival takes place on the site of Mos Espa, known to lovers of the film franchise as the spaceport on Tatooine. IRL, the exact spot is known locally as Ong Djemel and was built four decades ago by George Lucas especially for Star Wars.

Now in its third year, Dunes Electroniques welcomed Kölsch, Superpitcher and Derrick May, among many others, to the dusty town.

On top of this, attendees were given the opportunity to explore the set and watch artists from the Tunisia’s local music scene in an area surrounded by beautiful landscapes.

While not everyone gets into the spirit of things at the event, a number of festival-goers take it upon themselves to dress up as their favourite characters, so seeing a Darth Vader or Princess Leia wandering round isn’t considered a strange sight.

For general ravers, who don’t have to get into Cosplay to have a good time, this could be an interesting experience. Of course, you’ll be in a country where many of the young men have run off to fight for ISIS. Protestors to the festival drive around with megaphones yelling “Allah-uh-Akbar!”

From Al Jazeera:

On Saturday the ultra-conservative group Hizb ut-Tahrir held a small protest in Tozeur against the festival, arguing that it went against local values. The next morning, a car drove through the main square with a man yelling “God is great” and waving the group’s flag bearing the Islamic testament of faith.

Most locals, however, seemed pragmatic about the regional benefits. “Some people support it. Some people are against it,” says shop owner Naceur Hamadi, shrugging. “It’s bringing business to our town.”

While the number of tickets sold this year — 6,500 — fell short of a projected 10,000 visitors, the hotels and shops in Tozeur and Nefta enjoyed record sales for February.

Despite the bad weather and organizational issues, most of the young people interviewed said they planned to return next time.

Emna Bouguira, a 23-year-old medical intern, had spent half her first-ever monthly paycheck for a two-day pass — $155, the equivalent of one month’s minimum wage here. Interviewed at a rest stop on the six-hour drive back to Tunis, she says she had had a “mixed” experience. “The music was good, but it was badly organized,” she says.

But for her and others, it was a chance to see the Tozeur region for the first time, and she would like to return.

“Young Tunisians, we like to have fun. We like this atmosphere,” says Atef Braham, an electrical engineering student from the coastal town of Monastir. “This is the real Tunisia,” he says, taking a sip through the straw hooking up to his beer helmet.

He takes a moment to join an impromptu dance circle led by a guy wearing a fluorescent orange T-shirt that reads, “Always find a reason to smile.”

The full article from Al Jazeera is quite interesting, read it here.

Save yourselves a trip to Africa, Star Wars fans…you’ll see more Star Wars stuff at Burning Man.

Image: herby_fr/Flickr (Creative Commons)

Sandspeeder in a Dust Storm, 2005. Image: herby_fr/Flickr (Creative Commons)

Jawa Sandcrawler, 2007. Image: Rubin Starset/Flickr (Creative Commons)

Jawa Sandcrawler, 2007. Image: Rubin Starset/Flickr (Creative Commons)

Image: Duncan Rawlinson/Flickr (Creative Commons)

Image: Duncan Rawlinson/Flickr (Creative Commons)

star wars storm troopers

[Update 3/4/15 4:56pm]

A Balanced Perspective has pointed us to this up-coming Star Wars themed rave event with DJs in California on May 22. Star Wars art cars, unite!

rebel alliance

A long time ago, in a Galaxy far, far away….

“Luke Skywalker has returned to
his home Planet of Tatooine in
an attempt to Rescue his
friend Han Solo from the
clutches of the vile gangster
Jabba the Hutt.

Little does Luke know that the
GALACTIC EMPIRE has secretly
begun construction on a new
armored Space Station even
more powerful than the first
dreaded Death Star.

When completed, this ultimate
weapon will spell certain doom
for the small band of Rebels
struggling to restore Freedom
to the Galaxy…”

We invite you to our 2nd Annual Epic Star Wars Cos-Play Event… “Return to Tatooine” May 22nd – 25th
Memorial Day Weekend…

Return to Tatooine, This Time to Help the Rebel Alliance….

Come Dressed as your Favorite Sci-Fi Hero. From Dragon Ball Z to Boba Fett come let your Geek hang out. Don’t Have a Costume? Relax you can always Fake it…


Here is the Listing of Happenings…

Hawaiian Luau on the Kona at Dusk, Sat 23rd & Sun 24th of May. Don’t forget your Hawaiian Shirt, and Board Shorts, yeah..

The Corusant Ball (Late Saturday Night)
Lose yourself in the Fun, and Dance the night away at our Corusant Ball, with welcoming Host, Lando Calrissian. Costumes are encouraged, but certainly not required!

The Force is Strong With This One (Costume Contest)
Join in our Costume Contest, held at the Main Stage, Friday and Saturday nights, and show off your Finery, and win amazing Prizes, and throngs of Admiration. C’mon, take a turn on that Catwalk — Rrrrowww!

Mos Eisley Bazaar…. (Vendor Area)
Our Vendor and Artisan Area, Mos Eisley Bazaar will be packed with Weapons, Books, Artwork, Clothing, Jewelry, the Paintball Shooting Gallery, and oh so much more. It’s a Market like no other in the world!

(no plastic or painted parts ie. must be striped of any moop)
this is a self-reliant Event, if you come you bring your own Equipment, Power, Etc, no one is paid to bring there Art, Perform or Set Up a Theme Camps
all ages 14 and under, are Free.

Tickets Available Here:

General Admission $25 / $35 at the Gate

(Gate Sales are Discouraged)

All Ticket(s) are non-refundable.

For those with RV’s, right up the road is a very inexpensive Water refill, and Grey Water Dump station, at Red Rock State Park Ricardo Campground, please call them for up to date info. ( )

The Details:
Its on 20+ empty acres of private desert land, up Highway 14, near the City of Mojave California. Its just to get a head count of how many are coming so we can get enough Portos. Some Cell Phone and 4G Data services do not work out there, however AT&T seems to work fine.

You can Tent, RV, Camper, or sleep in your Vehicle. Radical Self Reliance must be practiced here. Just like any Camping Trip, bring everything you will need. You will need your own H2O as well. And as always, Leave No Trace.

You can come out as early as Thursday May 21st, but I’m sure most will arrive on the 22nd …..

We will have several nice sound systems out there, and various DJs will be spinning a set and Live Bands playing. If you want to provide some entertainment, please let us know. You are welcome to bring your fire toys, but also bring your fire safety equipment as well. All musical instruments are welcome.

(will be posting more info such as performers etc. later on in the month as time slots/spaces are filled)
Hey Guys Just So You Know…

We are a “VENDOR FEE” FREE Event… Come and set up a table, sell your wares, there will be no set-up/Booth Fee of any Kind. We encourage Artist Painters Jewelers, Artisans to Barter, Share or Sale Their… We may set up a Bartertown” area over by the Chill Dome. Sound like something you be interested in Contact Princess Hamade or myself… “Support the Arts, and the Artist.”

Our World would be just a little bit duller without you…

On the property there are 2 little Bars (mostly BYOB), Volley Ball, Badminton, a 2 Story Pyramid, 16′ Dome, Desert Golf, Horse Shoes, Darts and 2 private RVs. Oh, and Fun…

In the area there are many really cool things to do as well. The Mojave Boneyard or the Airplane junkyard, and Mojave SpacePort are right down the street. There are a few Ghost Towns in the nearby area, one Living, and some awesome yet bizarre manmade Rock Formations. And you are welcome to bring some of your Art out there as well, large or small.

Bikes are welcome too, and highly recommended, the desert is a big place.


Please RSVP the following information:
Camp Name or Your Name:
Number of people in camp: (not everyone in your camp needs to RSVP. We just need a total head count)
Arrival Date:
Type of camping: RV, Camper, Tent, Vehicle
Approx. footprint size needed: (No one will have assigned camp areas, we just want to make sure there is enough room for everyone. )

IMPORTANT INFO FOR PERFORMERS, ARTISTS, DJS, ART CARS, AND MAJOR THEME CAMPS PLEASE EMAIL ME at with your name, general info, (ie. phone number, email where u can be contacted) and your ETA. This is a non paid gig, all money made from the event helps establish the ranch for future that we can continue providing a safe place to play! it also covers portos!

Don’t forget to include a short summary, pics etc of what you would like to bring to be considered for two comp Tickets. Please note: Theme Camps unfortunately still only get two Tickets..we may be able to provide discounted Tickets.


For Future Info and Pics/Videos of the Event, as well as Questions about the location… join our group

9 comments on “Star Wars In The Desert [Update]

  1. >the exact spot is known locally as Ong Djemel and was built four decades ago by George Lucas especially for Star Wars

    Lucas built this area for the prequels, not 40 years ago. Lucas used locations around Djerba for the filming of A New Hope (like the cantina exterior scenes and others). Those settings still exist within those small towns, however they’re very dilapidated today and couldn’t withstand an assault by a raver dressed and Vader or Miss Candy Two Shoes.

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