Article by: Kyle Dusterhoft
Browsing the Arizona social media feed over the past month, one may have seen a flyer for an event called Splash Down. The annual event is headed into its fifth year and is energetically backed by the hosts that this year is bigger and better than ever. Splash Down, customarily hosted at “The Goat Farm” has switched to a new venue unbeknownst to ticket holders until the day of the event. With the start of a new era at a new venue, let’s take a step back in time with Jason Euler to talk about the history of Splash Down.
The origins of Splash Down are very well known within the tight-knit community of attendees, but for those who are new or have attended in the past, Jason Euler recalls “I was sitting in a backyard with my friend Ryan Modi one summer. He had a good size lot with a pool in the middle of a neighborhood in Scottsdale. Throwing shows in the summer is very tough in Arizona without a pool, to say the least, and at the time we were operating our first-ever entertainment company Nick Lamoureux and I had launched at that time.
“After convincing Ryan to let us use the house we started to plan. We wrote a letter to every house in the neighborhood begging them not to call the cops on us this Saturday as we were raising funds for the Live for Colin Foundation and St. Dominics School for Children with Autism. We booked a killer local lineup of most of the artists who worked on what was then MVMNT at the time before It became OCTIV Entertainment. We live streamed the event, put together a full stage with an LED wall, and threw a rager. The cops were called and I had to talk them down to let the event continue after I shared what it was for.”
One major constant over the years is Splash Down’s commitment to supporting non-profit organizations. Teach One to Lead One, the non-profit that Splash Down has been backing in the past years, is an organization dedicated to providing educators nationwide with constructive mentoring programs for students in grades K-12.
“Programs focus on nurturing and instilling universal principles essential to adequately move students forward in their personal and professional lives,” Euler shares. “Students graduate from Teach One to Lead One with a firm understanding of communicative skills and character attributes that lead to success as they move from childhood to young adulthood.
“This is a non-profit that Payam Bipar, one of the other originators of the Splash Down team, and I volunteer every week at Saguaro High School working directly with the youth in our community. In short, we chose them because we directly see where the funds go and the lives it helps impact for a greater future.”
Splash Down is different from most other events in Arizona because it is an invite-only event, but it isn’t exactly an exclusive event either. Euler claims, “We started Splash Down in 2017 with one single rule. Invite the best humans you know. Invite the people with the best character from your friend group. That alone has always made it different as it became a melting pot of good-hearted individuals who all came together to celebrate the summer, our community, and raise funds for incredible causes over the years.”
Splash Down is never complete without an abundance of amazing local talent and a couple of hidden headliners. In 2021 Splash Down hosted Ranger Trucco, Ekonovah, FREAK ON, and The Hotel Lobby as the surprise headliners. Even though this is an extremely talented group of artists, there is one performance from back in 2019 at Splash Down 3 that sticks out for Euler, “I would say it's probably unanimous, but few sets will ever match Ghastly at Splash Down 3! We always do an indoor stage and an outdoor stage that we put together.
“The year Ghastly played, a giant haboob (a massive dust storm for outside The Valley) rolled in right before he was set to perform. So we ended up cramming the entire party in a small sweaty room and Ghastly threw down what felt like a mainstage performance for a few hundred of us. It was the most intimate and incredible experience I've ever had in dance music and a memory I will never forget.”
Even through all of the twists, turns, and inclement weather, Euler reiterates, “I'm always beyond grateful to the acts that come play Splash Down. It's a weekend day and they come to play here instead of taking bookings in other places where they may have financially benefited more.”
From the first Splash down until now, “So much has changed but at the same time it feels like nothing has changed,” Euler confesses. “Splash Down 1 we were a small company trying to make a name for ourselves in the Arizona dance music community and it was meant to be a cool exclusive event to give back to the community, but also give back to the supporters who had been coming to the other shows we were hosting.”
In Splash Down’s history, there have been just two venues: first at Ryan Modi's Scottsdale house and then for the last three years at a spot dubbed The Goat Farm, since Josh, the host, kept goats there. But this year Euler is excited to freshen things up. “This year we have a new venue and new surprise headliners, but it's still the same vibe and same goal. Bring together the best humans you know for a great cause. It's incredible to say we've raised thousands from an annual backyard pool party put together by a few good friends.”