An 18-and-older age requirement for Ultra Music Festival will go into effect with the 2015 edition of the Miami event, according to a Tuesday announcement that will be cause for rejoice among the majority of attendees.
The three-day gathering of electronic music devotees from around the world, which drew more than 160,000 this year, returns to Bayfront Park March 27-29. Ticket pre-registration opens Sept. 15.
In making the announcement, festival organizers acknowledged what should go without saying: UMF is for grown-ups.
“While we sincerely value the incredible ongoing support from our younger fans, we ultimately believe that Ultra Music Festival is a premium event geared towards adults,” the statement read. “This decision has been made to reinforce and promote the safety of all Ultra Music Festival fans and to ensure the overall enjoyment of all future attendees. We are extremely grateful for all the support we have received from our younger fan base to date, and we encourage them to attend the festival once they reach the appropriate age.”
Ultra Music Festival is offered live at the free “Ultra Live” YouTube stream.
The festival’s new security director, Ray Martinez, former Miami Beach police chief, said “the first step to preserving the unique atmosphere that Ultra is famous for is to be proactive in attracting the right crowd.”
This year’s Ultra Music Festival made news when a security guard was hospitalized after being trampled by a group of unticketed fans who stormed a fence. Miami police also reported three drug overdoses, one fatal.
The new age requirement was among several changes sought by Miami City Commissioner Marc Sarnoff in the wake of the 2014 festival. Ultra organizers also have agreed to hire more police officers and institute substance-abuse and mental-health stations operated by health professionals.