DC’s All Things Go Fall Classic is in the books, and this year’s version was better than ever!
I like that DC has its own music festival. We may live in an era of too many festivals, but the numbers will ebb and flow based on what the market will bear. And the market in DC thrived on the 2018 edition of the All Things Go Fall Classic held on October 6th and 7th.
This festival (started in 2014) once again took place at Union Market’s Dock 5, and was specifically curated to focus on female artists in order ‘to support the movement towards equal representation in the music industry’. The first day (of the two-day festival), was an all female lineup, orchestrated by Lizzy Plapinger and Maggie Rogers (whom also both performed on Saturday, October 6th) and the co-founders of All Things Go (originally a music blog). Saturday’s headliner was also Maggie Rogers and then Carly Rae Jepsen on Sunday.
I also attended the 2017 edition, and this year seemed subtlety better. Maybe it was the more engaged festival goers, or the pure enthusiasm of the artists and bands, or that the organizers focused on building a great two-day lineup (instead of three), or just that they had learned how to best take advantage of the venue from last year’s experience. Hard to say exactly, but I enjoyed the experience more in 2018.
I was able to dip in and out for different sets throughout the two days, for six in total. I do like that one could come and go as they pleased, as I couldn’t be there for all 16 artists or bands, over (roughly) 22 hours. This year they also had a proper festival wristband that festival goers scanned in and out with.
During Saturday’s first set (12:30pm) performed by (Charlene) Kaye, I stood near the front, stage right and soon the energy level ratcheted up a few notches. Just to my left, Lizzy Plapinger (formerly of MS MR, now LPX as a solo artist) had joined the crowd and was cheering on Kaye and smiling up a storm. There is likely not a single person that can compare to Lizzy’s exuberance, and just the pride and joy she exhibited throughout the day, especially during her set and at the end of the long day of music when she joined Maggie Rogers on stage for (lots of) hugs and to thank her and those involved in making the festival a success. Also, at one point she was behind me in line for Timber Pizza. She was everywhere!
All Things Good: Overall Experience
The space is still relatively small, but can pack in over 10,000 DC denizens over the course of two days. The crowd trended younger and female, but still proved to attract a good mix of ages, orientations and genders.
The food options were top-notch, with Timber Pizza (I had the tasty pepperoni pie), Shake Shack, Buredo, Bun’d Up (I also had these excellent hand-made buns; they have a stall at Union Market as well) and Vice Cream (which looked amazing), among others.
The energy was palpable, not just Lizzy, everyone was having fun and enjoying the music. For many people, they were letting off steam from some of the recent headlines. I also like that in the downtime between sets, there was enough musical variety to appeal to most people, including one moment where everyone danced and sang along to ABBA’s “Dancing Queen”.
There were two giant white ‘beach’ balls, with artists painting on one, and on the other, anyone could write or scribble their mood or their mind.
Not many this year. Only that Heineken remained the primary beer. Heineken = bad. There was also Strongbow cider, and plenty of harder alcohol options.
The festival organizers did well with curating the music lineup and the food stalls, so here’s a plea to up the beer game next year! Let’s go with some craft beer (okay, there was a Lagunitas) and/or please include a couple local breweries.
Next: We’ll look at the artists and bands I witnessed at All Things Go.