by Borderstan.com May 15, 2013 at 4:00 pm 1 Comment

"Sweetlife"

Great crowd at the Sweetlife Festival. ( Jennifer Sisto)

From Chelsea Rinnig. Email her at chelsea[AT]borderstan.com.

The Sweetlife Festival, now come and gone, provides such a great concept. With many young people attracted to the headliners and festival scene, Sweetlife captured the opportunity to promote local food, healthier options and sustainable practices on a large scale, hopefully setting an example for the festival circuit to follow.

"Sweetlife"

Oysters a favorite to some. ( Jennifer Sisto)

The day began with some ominous clouds and light showers in the morning, clearing to sunny skies in time for a fantastic, soulful performance from Solange. Perusing the Food Forest, fresh strawberries from the Freshfarm Markets, KIND bar and Honest Tea samples, photobooths and sweetgreen salads provided a bright, light lunchtime. Festive youths flocked to the food trucks (including district natives Takorean, Pepe and the Big Cheese) and camped out on the green while the weather held up.

From the inside of the Pavilion, Gary Clark Jr. stole the audience’s hearts with a mesmerizing set of rock and roll and blues. Despite the pouring rain, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs kept the audience engaged and cheering as lead singer Karen O provided quite the show in a sparkly yellow short suit and fierce, studded leather jacket.

"Sweetlife"

Great music. (Jennifer Sisto)

The rain cleared in time for dinner — I chose an oyster pancake from Toki Underground, where the chefs teamed up with Woodberry Kitchen and utilized every part of the pig you can imagine (including roasted head on the menu). Fully fed and having danced to a song or two at Holy Ghost! at the Treehouse Stage, I waited in the mud for Phoenix to close out the day. A set with many ups and downs, lead singer Thomas Mars ended on a high note, crowd surfing and then breaking the mike to throw it out to one lucky member of the audience.

At no other music festival could one have so many choices — from the usual fare of fries and chicken sandwiches, to chia pods, vegetarian falafel and even oysters (not a wise choice for the faint of heart or enthusiastic imbiber, however). Though teens tend to flock to this festival, opting for the Pavilion or VIP ticket provided another option for an older crowd to get up close with musical artists as well, and at least stay dry for most of the day. All in all, another success for the innovators at sweetgreen.

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by Borderstan.com May 10, 2013 at 11:00 am 0

From Chelsea Rinnig. Email her at chelsea[AT]borderstan.com.

"Sweetlife"

Sweetgreen is sponsoring the Sweetlife Festival at the Merriweather Post Pavillion. (Luis Gomez Photos)

Return of the Sweetlife Festival

Sweetlife is back tomorrow, May 11, at the Merriweather Post Pavillion for another full day outdoors of top-notch musical talent and a food forest highlighting healthy snacks alongside the best of DC’s restaurants and chefs.

New to this years’ festival is a group outdoor yoga class before the opening act and an ecostore of sustainable and local products to help you get through the day.

While VIP and Pavilion tickets have sold out, General Admission tickets are still available to witness an impressive lineup. Phoenix, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Kendrick Lamar, Passion Pit, Gary Clark Jr., Solange and Lindsay Sterling headline the festival at the Mainstage. The Treehouse stage will feature additional acts like Holy Ghost!, Youth Lagoon and MS MR, to name a few.

Lastly, the 9:32 Club, sponsored by the 9:30 Club, will host guest artists like Nancy Whang of LCD Soundsystem, Mr. JPatt of The Knocks and others at a stage catered to those looking to dance off some of those festival day calories.

More Than Just Music

Speaking of food, plenty of salads, yogurt, wraps and sweetpress will be available to attendees for purchase at the sweetgreen café, along with snacks from locals like sticky fingers and Docezza. Toki Underground, Kushi Izakaya, DGS and food trucks Takorean, Pepe and the Big Cheese will also be on site throughout the day. Local breweries and vineyards will provide libations as well — so go ahead and have that extra beer — it won’t matter as much when you’ve had a salad for lunch.

Sweetgreen recently opened another Borderstan location this past week at 14th and W Streets NW, to add to the Dupont Circle and Logan Circle locations in the neighborhood. Three locals first opened a location in Georgetown in 2007 and since then, the business has expanded to Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia. Sweetgreen promotes sustainable practices, healthy living and organic, farm-fresh ingredients.

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