UPDATE 2: Representatives on behalf of Moonrise have reached out to us and expressed that at this time they do not consider CSS to have been at fault, and instead blame a security staffer called 24/7 Security for the incidents that transpired over the weekend.
UPDATE: Countless more Moonrise attendees have reached out to Magnetic Magazine with their own testimonies from the festival. Read some of them here.
Moonrise Festival attracted revelers from far and wide over the weekend, but some of them claim that they had to go to great lengths just to remain onsite. According to numerous attendees, security guards hired to work the event threatened to eject them from the premises if they didn't pay them.
The reports surfaced in the Facebook group Moonrise Festival 2016 when an attendee claimed that two security guards threatened to cut off his wristband if he didn't pay them $20. Several others echoed his experience in the thread that followed.
Another attendee named Kadeem Kirton told Magnetic Magazine about his own experience. He recalled:
"Some friends and I entered the festival. They wanted to show me this cool spot, and as we got over there we noticed some security tailing us. We sat inside the little woven huts where groups of people were smoking, and the security tapped us and told us to give them $20 or any drugs we had in order to stay in the festival. Then they proceeded to do it to everyone else there.
Kirton said that to avoid conflict, his group offered the guards the $10 that they had on them, but were told that it wasn't enough. "He saw me give my friend change and asked for those three dollar bills," he told us. "He said, 'Do y'all want to get put out? I'm doing you all a favor.'"
Other attendees reported losing as much as $50 in similar instances of extortion. The staffer CSS security had been enlisted to work the festival, but guards belonging to other agencies may have been involved as well.
Magnetic Magazine has reached out to the organizers of Moonrise Festival for comment, but we have not received a response as of this writing. We encourage anyone with similar stories to tell us about what happened in the comments section below - or for guaranteed anonymity, reach out to us by emailing Info@MagneticMag.com.