A techno parade whose initiators include the founder of the Love Parade, once a popular annual party in Berlin, took to the streets of the German capital Saturday with calls for the city's electronic music culture to be added to a World Heritage list. The "Rave the Planet" parade set out from the Kurfuerstendamm shopping boulevard to the Victory Column in the middle of Berlin's Tiergarten park, the AP reports. Police estimated 20,000 people turned out for the parade, the German news agency dpa reported. They deployed 600 officers, but no disturbances were reported.
One of the parade's organizers, a DJ known professionally as Dr. Motte, called for an unconditional basic income for artists and for Berlin's club culture to be listed as intangible heritage by UNESCO, the UN's cultural agency. Dr. Motte, 62, is best known for founding the Love Parade—which grew from a small procession of 150 ravers in 1989 to a huge music festival and street party with 1.5 million participants a decade later. The popularity of the event, whose original motto was "Peace, Joy, Pancakes," later waned; it was last held in Berlin in 2006. Parties with the Love Parade brand were held under different organizers after that in Germany's industrial Ruhr region but ended after a mass panic at the 2010 event in Duisburg resulted in 21 deaths.
Electronic artists were scheduled to perform on floats representing several European countries, per the Guardian. The city's nightclubs reopened in March after being closed for almost two years. In that time, makeshift parties sprang up in Berlin's public parks, and outdoor clubbing became popular. Lawmakers are considering banning alcohol in parks to discourage the trend. (Read more electronic music stories.)