Monsters of Rock Cruise – Campus Invasion Official Pre-Party – Cape Canaveral, FL – 4/28/2023

With the theme of Rock ‘n Roll High School, the Monsters of Rock Cruise Campus Invasion took over a hotel with their official pre-party at the Raddison Resort at the Port in Cape Canaveral, FL.  The SOLD-OUT event welcomed about a thousand guests as they arrived in Florida the day before setting sail on a five-day journey to the private island of Labadee and Punta Cana, Dominican Republic on Royal Caribbean’s Mariner of the Seas.

Starting mid-day DJ will and Izzy got the party started as cruisers overwhelmed the hotel staff with drink requests at the pool-side bar.  The line soon migrated in search of shiny gold wrist-bands to access the convention hall where a handful of cruise artists performed throughout the afternoon and evening.

The line-up featured Nashville’s country metal band Cody Parks & the Dirty South, who also hosted a corn hole tournament that afternoon; Chicago-based Jazz Rock artists Marbin; surprise artists Eclipse from Sweden who later joined SOTO for a little W.E.T. medley; Ted Poley, who brought out some Danger Danger favorites, a giant shrimp, and our ‘Monster’ theme song; Mac Sabbath, who brought the laughs; SOTO who’s set featured a few welcomed special guests, including bassist David Ellefson (ex-Megadeth, Kings of Thrash, Dieth) for a rare Ellefson-Soto performance; and Anthony Corder (Tora Tora), who concluded the evening with an acoustic performance by the Raddison hotel pool as a viewing of “Rock ‘n Roll High School” took place on the nearby tennis courts.

The hotel lobby was busy the following morning as shuttle transportation moved the crowd to our port destination at Cape Canaveral to embark on a Monsters of Rock Cruise (MORC) family reunion featuring five full days and nights of rock ‘n roll debauchery.

We are just getting started with MORC coverage.  (Update: Check out our sail away day coverage, Dominican Republic highlights, beach day in Haiti, and our final day at sea, as well as the full story behind last year’s 2022 Monsters of Rock Cruise sailing.)

Follow us @ThePureRockShop for more from the 2023 sailing of the Monsters of Rock Cruise as well as captures, recaps, and interviews from of local and regional concerts and festivals including Jackyl, Faster Pussycat, Chris Jericho’s Kuarantine, and more this summer.

Recap and Live Photos by Editor and founder Kara Marie Uhrlen for The Pure Rock Shop.  Posted on 5/29/2023.