Written by Molly Kish //
Outside Lands is a little more than a week away (can you believe it?!?!), and as the final details emerge before next weekend, the anticipation remains at an all-time high for the music festival’s ninth edition.
Besides gaining traction for its diverse roster of musicians, an all-star comedy lineup and its extensive culinary showcases, the three-day affair invading Golden Gate Park every August also continues to raise standards across the festival circuit with its innovative features both on and off the fairgrounds.
As we start crafting our schedules and await any final details, here are our 10 favorite festival features for Outside Lands 2016.
Inhabiting a stage nestled within the tree section of Hellman Hollow, GastroMagic is a place where food, music, mischief and magic come together. Continually providing some of Outside Lands’ most underrated performances each year, it is the perfect combination of chaos and cross-lineup configurations you’d never be able to catch at any other music festival. See the full schedule here.
9. Outsider Art
Artist, curator and former Google executive Jeben Berg has teamed up with SF’s own Juxtapoz Magazine to bring a stellar roster of talent that highlights the work of incredible scrim artists, live painting, curated installations and performance pieces throughout the entire weekend. See the full roster here.
8. Outside Clams
For the love of seafood, Woodhouse Fish Co. has sourced fresh, local shellfish from Tomales Bay to enjoy either raw or barbecued and paired with the best wines from Napa Valley and Sonoma. Serving up these delicacies along with bowls of chowder, lobster rolls and much more, this new Outside Lands feature located outside of Wine Lands is a must stop for any seafood connoisseur.
7. Night Shows
Didn’t get enough live music at the festival? Well, fear not! Another Planet Entertainment has partnered with several historic venues in SF to offer a full gamut of late-night entertainment and keep you rocking all weekend long. A couple of them have already sold out, so make sure to buy your tickets now. See who is playing and more details here.
6. Bike Party
Departing from the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium everyday at noon, the festival’s bike party arrives at the Log Cabin Meadow before taking off at 10:30 p.m. each night. Join the fun on America’s only music festival group bike ride!
5. Greening Initiatives
• Refillable Water Program: There will be free refillable water stations located in the Polo Fields and Eco Lands.
• Farmers Market: Full Belly Farm will be selling organic and fresh-picked melon slices, peaches, tomatoes, corn, green beans and bell peppers at the festival’s farmers market.
• Urban Gardening Workshops: Garden for the Environment will be offering workshops on worm composting twice daily at their booth in Eco Lands.
4. Forest Feast with Trestle Restaurant
Offering an intimate dining experience that features an upscale tasting menu from Michelin Bib Gourmand recipient Trestle in SF, Forest Feast is nestled in a secluded forest area of the festival grounds and features performances from a New Orleans brass band (still TBA) and real-life magician Jon Armstrong. Seatings are available all three days of the festival (Friday-Sunday) at 2 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. Tickets can be purchased here.
Meet and greet the artists of Outside Lands 2016 at this interactive mecca amidst the festival fairgrounds. Filled with the latest innovations in music and festival technology, you can host your own group disco in the Chromecast private gif booth with the chance to get broadcasted, score festival flare and more.
2. The Back Wine: Mini Golf Course
Located directly behind Wine Lands, The Back Wine is Outside Lands’ three-hole mini golf course that playfully incorporates the scenery of SF in each of its holes. A welcome reprieve from the bustle of the fairgrounds, one can putt putt their way through the sites of the city while sampling the sweet nectar from our Napa Valley neighbors.
1. Summer Pairings Series
Previewing the lineup over 80 restaurants, 40 wineries and 28 breweries, Outside Lands’ Summer Pairing Series teams up with those in charge of curating the festival’s culinary experience to craft special sneak-peaks of what this year’s menu has to offer.
• Cheeseland Preview @ Long Meadow Ranch: July 5th-31th (4-8 p.m. daily)
Visit the stunning St. Helena location for pairings of Nicasio Valley San Geronimo Raclette and the 2015 Long Meadow Ranch Sauvignon Blanc.
• Bluegrass, BBQ and Blues @ Southpaw: July 26th (7-10 p.m.)
Take part in a Southern-inspired party hosted by Southpaw and Anchor Brewing where you can sample Southpaw BBQ and special release beers (flights and drafts) while enjoying a live set from local bluegrass outfit The Bowties. Tickets can be purchased here.
• Pinot, Pizza and Funk @ Bluxome Street Winery: July 30th (5-9 p.m.)
Newcomers to the lineup, Mozzeria bring their creative take on Neapolitan pizzas to Bluxome Street Winery for wine pairings during a live performance by local funk outfit Tortoise & The Pimps. Tickets can be purchased here.