In its early days, Life Is Beautiful’s takeover of downtown Las Vegas was a can’t-miss event. Headliners included the Weeknd, Kendrick Lamar, Billie Eilish, and Dua Lipa. Funding was provided to attract artists who installed temporary artworks like a canopy of synchronized lights from Burning Man and murals like one of moths spanning the wall next to Atomic Liquors. And the culinary program attracted some of the city’s best chefs to host elaborate dinners. Then Rolling Stone bought the festival.

Fans have been anxiously waiting to hear literally anything from festival organizers. By now, organizers should have released lineups and tiered ticketing prices. But it’s been radio silence. Today, festival announcers shared that the event is being “reimagined” in a new footprint as a “block party.”

Officially coined “Life Is Beautiful Presents: A Big, Beautiful Block Party,” the event will take place September 27 and 28 downtown at 324 South Main Street, a ten-acre outdoor venue adjacent to the Plaza Hotel & Casino. The space can host a crowd of up to 25,000. The two-day event will feature artists on two stages with shows running from 5 p.m. to 2 a.m. on both nights. Two-day tickets start at $199 and go on sale on Thursday, June 27. Tickets go on sale Tuesday, June 25.

Life is Beautiful stage.

Life Is Beautiful.
Alive Coverage/Sipa USA

It’s a significant drop-off from Life Is Beautiful’s 18-block footprint. In 2022, Rolling Stone acquired a majority stake in Life Is Beautiful — the sale was part of a larger effort at both Rolling Stone and its parent company Penske Media Corporation, to make further inroads in the live event space. It’s a significant shift from its inception. The festival was established in 2013, founded by Rehan Choudhry and Joey Vanas, with lead investor Tony Hsieh. This year marks the first event in which Rolling Stone is the sole owner.

In a press release, the company states: “For a number of reasons it was appropriate to hit pause on the Life is Beautiful Festival this year.” It also says that this event is not intended to replace the festival and that, in time, the two will coexist.

On the Life Is Beautiful website, organizers say that the Block Party will be a celebration of the culture, ideals, and the evolution of Downtown Las Vegas. They say that the two-day dance party is “a unique return to our roots, a more close-knit, and affordable experience in a vibrant new neighborhood.” Without knowing the lineup, it’s hard not to draw comparisons between the Block Party and First Friday — the monthly festival that draws food trucks, live music and entertainment, and art exhibitions and live painting to downtown Las Vegas at 5 p.m. on the first Friday of every month — and it’s free. Life Is Beautiful? Maybe. But this September, Life Is Okay!

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