The decentralized dance party comes to Ottawa

NO COVER CHARGE, no waiting in line for an hour, no minimum age, and no guest list—just straight partying all night. Although it sounds too good to be true, the decentralized dance party (DDP) lets you do just that.

What started between two friends in Vancouver has now spread across the nation. Coming to the Canada’s capital on Oct. 20, party-goers can expect a themed bash and thousands of people dancing in the streets.

“My friend Tom and I invented it here in Vancouver about two years ago,” Gary Lachance, co-founder of the DDP concept.

“The name comes from the fact that it’s a party with no central audio source and no central location. It’s totally portable.”

The party features a DJ with a portable FM radio transmitter and a couple hundred ghetto blasters. Lachance tunes in the stereos to the same frequency, and along with a microphone and an iPod, the DDP becomes its own travelling radio station.

“We get hundreds of people to carry the stereos,” says Lachance. “We usually have a certain starting point and then we basically lead them on … through the city.”

“We’ve [been] to about 10 different cities. A lot of parties were in Vancouver. They started small and it just kind of grew and grew. It’s been totally social media and word of mouth driven.”

The party is also a dry event, with no ID required and people of all ages can attend. The theme for this year’s Party Safari Tour, the name of the countrywide tour, is business attire, which means the Ottawa stop will be literally mixing business with pleasure with people dancing in the street wearing business clothes.

Although they would like to take their parties to the U.S. and around the world, the DDP founders are having some difficulties funding their tours.

“The only hard thing has been figuring out financing. We have never turned a profit so far,” says Lachance.

“It’s an all or nothing funding, so for this next tour it’s 25 days, nine cities—and we need to raise $20,000 to pull it off.”

The DDP founders have turned to kickstarter.com, an online funding platform where artists can ask for pledges from people to help finance their creative endeavour. Also, if they don’t meet their goal amount, then nobody has to pay what they said they would pledge. They will only receive funding if they get $20,000 worth of online pledges.

“There are different levels people can donate at. Each level gets you different rewards. We’re offering all kinds of T-shirts—strictly business looks—underwear, and all that kind of stuff. So depending on how much you donate you get a different reward,” says Lachance.

According to their Party Manifesto, which can be found on their website, the duo will continue with throwing large street bashes because of their goal of “further the frontiers of Partying, bring joy to millions of people, and ensure that Partying is respected, legitimized, and forever enshrined as a spiritual movement of paramount importance.”

Despite their limited financial resources and accidentally having their Facebook page deleted, the DDP will continue on because of the founders’ love for partying.

“It’s something fun and awesome that we want to see happen in the world,” says Lachance.

—Sofia Hashi