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Good 'N' Green

Music to our ears: Q&A with Zack Friendly, Co-Founder of All Things Go

Oct 4, 2016

We dig music festivals so much because they celebrate music, art, community and of course- food. Each music festival is a celebration of its ‘hood.

For the third year in a row, D.C.-based music, news and art website All Things Go will host their annual Fall Classic music festival on Saturday, October 8th in Yards Park at The Capital Riverfront featuring Shack faves- Empire of the Sun, Sylvan Esso, and Passion Pit. The All Things Go Fall Classic will also feature local food spots, like TaKorean, Timber Pizza Co., DGS Delicatessen and of course- Shake Shack.

We sat down with Zack Friendly, one of the four All Things Go co-founders to get the low-down on what it’s like to curate a food lineup at a music festival.

Why has the food lineup at a music festival become just as important as the artist lineup?
Zack: It’s a challenge to make our festival stand out in a crowded national market, and we think that the time and effort we’ve put into crafting the entire festival experience is what sets us apart. We focus not only on excellent up-and-coming musical acts, but we care deeply about the visual experience and, obviously, the culinary experience. We want the entire day to be memorable for attendees, and food plays a major role in that.

Why do you think there’s so much overlap between passions for food and music?
Zack: Finding a new favorite restaurant is a similar experience to finding a new favorite band. You want to share it with the entire world, but a part of you wants it to be your little secret, and we totally understand that. DC was recently rated the restaurant city of the year by Bon Appetit, and we think that’s as much a reflection of the caliber of restaurants as it is a reflection of the city’s residents. DC residents are always looking for new experiences and adventures, and we’re hoping to capture that spirit with both our food and our music lineup.

How do you pick and choose which food spots to include in the festival? What is the process like?
Zack: In our first two years, we teamed up with renowned DC chef Erik Bruner-Yang to help curate our food lineup, which was a major success. This year, we partnered with The Infatuation to put together our best food lineup yet, with Shake Shack (obviously), Beefsteak Veggies, TaKorean, Buredo, Timber Pizza Co., DGS Delicatessen, and Milk Cult. We’re proud of the diverse and delicious lineup we’re offering this year, and can’t wait to see our festival-goers try something new.

What’s All Things Go’s strategy when it comes to curating a food lineup? How important is it to All Things Go to pick local spots?
Zack: We (ATG) are four native Washingtonians, so we appreciate keeping things local more than most. Each year, we’ve made a concerted effort to have at least one local act on the bill, and our food lineup is even more hyper-local. TaKorean, Timber Pizza, and DGS were all founded by native Washingtonians (and our friends), and the rest of the food lineup has restaurants that launched here within the city limits. We received a number of submissions for food vendors, but we wanted to focus on restaurants that we think our attendees would appreciate most. Our food lineup is as diverse as our music lineup, and yet still focused on highlighting restaurants that are very much part of the DC food culture. After all, who doesn’t want a Double ShackBurger while watching Empire of the Sun and Passion Pit rock out on stage?

Calling all D.C. burger buds: we’re giving away a pair of General Admission tickets to the All Things Go Fall Classic for you and a friend on our Twitter page! Tickets are also still available for purchase.

Shack10 graphic with a crowd of people facing a stage

Get stoked for the All Things Go Fall Classic on Saturday, October 8th: