INDIO, Calif. –
In just a few months some of the biggest names in rock ‘n’ roll music will be converging on the desert. With the thousands of people rocking out at the Empire Polo Club, the grounds will take quite a beating. Alex Haagen, who owns the Polo Club said while he’s thrilled about the extra concert, the extra foot traffic takes a toll on the grounds.
“When we do those concerts, we bring in huge equipment, cranes, forklifts, staging and it packs the ground and it really destroys the grass,” Haagen said.
With the addition of Desert Trip, the amount of time the staff normally has to get ready for polo season is cut short.
“We’re going to be forcing them to grow and come back very quickly. Where regularly we have all summer and now we’re going to have to get them back in a 6 to 8 week period. So it takes a lot of labor, a lot of material and a lot of knowledge a lot of very sharp people,” Haagen said.
Polo normally starts in October or November, but with Desert Trip in the mix it’s pushed back until January. But Haagen said he’s willing to put in the extra effort.
“It’s a logistical nightmare to do, but it’s worth doing,” Haagen said.
Preparations already underway, with hedges being removed, all to make way for the main stage. Haagen said the entire set up will almost be as large as two Staples Centers put together. Unlike Coachella and Stagecoach, Desert Trip will have full stadium seating.
“We’re going to have bleachers, seats and sitting areas and boxes that will be 30,000 people,” Haagen said.
Another 45,000 people can sit behind on the lawn.
“I think that people my age that were around during Woodstock but didn’t go, I think, have always said, ‘I’m sorry I missed it. Wow, if I could do it over again I’d never miss going to Woodstock. I’d be there.’ You can’t do that, but this is that type of a moment,” Haagen said.
Haagen said because of the older demographic for this concert, they’re stepping up the amenities as well. Instead of port-a-potties here will be what they call comfort stations — those nice trailer bathrooms. He said there will also be some world famous chefs serving up some fancy dishes.
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