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Our Experience at the RiSE Lantern Festival in the Nevada Desert and Why You Should Attend This Spectacular Event!


rise lantern festival

We recently attended RiSE Mojave!  The RiSE Lantern Festival is set in the Nevada desert.  More specifically in the Moapa River Indian Reservation or Valley of Fire (the oldest state park in Nevada) which is about 30 – 40 miles northeast of Las Vegas.  We stayed on the Las Vegas strip and the RiSE Festival had shuttle buses that took us to the event.  Attending RISE was definitely something I got to check off my bucket list!

“The evening begins with live music by handpicked local artists that set the ambiance for you to relax, eat, drink, and be with friends as you prepare for your lantern release.  You’ll personalize your lantern with a message, a prayer, a dream or a resolution.  After sunset we will light our lanterns together and release them skyward.  Your lantern means something unique to you. But together they give a collective voice to our dreams and challenges in a beautiful display—and one unforgettable evening.” – RISE

Check out our experience at Rise below!

rise festival
rise lantern festival
rise festival

rise lantern festival

rise festival


We were awestruck the entire night. Jennifer and I wrote personal messages on our lanterns which made us both pretty emotional.  I mean with songs from Coldplay, Imogen Heap, and Bon Iver playing in the background its pretty hard not to get a little teary eyed.  As I lit my first lantern and waited for it to fill up with heat and take off, I stopped to reflect on my year.  I remembered why it was so important for me to be here, in this moment, and took in all the energy and positive vibes around me.  Really soaking everything in.  It was so powerful and uplifting.

Traveling over 3,000 miles to be apart of something so much bigger was so worth it.  To be standing on an Indian Reservation, surrounded by this amazing community, a calm peaceful feeling suddenly came over me.  I sent my lantern into the world and it joined the flames from 20,000 other lanterns all tied together with love and danced off into the distance. #TogetherWeRise

Looking up at the lanterns floating away in the night sky was an unforgettable experience.  Just watching and staring at over 20,000 hopes and dreams drift off in the night sky was emotional…and raw…and magical.  Seriously all the feels.  There is so much to let go of yet so much more to be grateful for.  It was such a beautiful night with so many messages of hope, faith, and forgiveness. RISE helped me realize that life is full of meaning; we just have to stop and take a look once in a while.

life is full of meaning we just have to stop and take a look once in awhile

The experience was extremely meaningful for so many people in so many different ways.  My heart is so full.  May my hopes and dreams burn the way for next year!  Follow the winds that bring the cold… I light a fire in your soul.  I hope to inspire you to spend more time making memories.  To go out there and experience new things… to create new traditions with people you love. Eat well and travel often!

rise lantern festival

All photos by Jennifer Oetting Photography. The best travel and wedding everything photographer there is!

rise festival

To get your tickets for next year keep an eye out for the RISE Festival here.  This is a sold out event so make sure to get your tickets early.  Thanks so much to the Rise Festival for hosting us.  We had an amazing time!


rise festival

all jewelry by Kristalize *

rise festival

Some of my favorite photos from the night from other people who attended RISE!

rise festival instagram

Read Next: 10 Reasons We Love Vegas // 21 Things To Add To Your Bucket List Today



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