This past weekend’s High Water Festival again brought thousands of people and an array of music to North Charleston’s Riverfront Park, but something from last year’s event was missing: Brutally long lines for food.
Before the fest kicked off, organizers announced they added more food vendors to the 2019 lineup in response to feedback from attendees.
The extra vendors “took some of pressure off” of vendors, according to Christina Persico of AC Entertainment, which puts on the festival curated by musical duo Shovels & Rope.
“We have been receiving really positive feedback on the variety of local food options we offered,” she said. “And the lines never got too long.”
During the 2018 festival, 12 vendors were on site and long lines formed in front of vendors such as Ben & Jerry’s, Roti Rolls and Semilla. At times, fest-goers were waiting in line for up to 45 minutes leaving them at risk of missing an entire set of music.
A total of 20 food trucks and stands were serving food, from pimento cheese gyros to brisket tacos to acai bowls, on Saturday and Sunday, including local vendors such as Lewis Barbecue, Life Raft Treats and Verde as well as Corndog Inc., a vendor from Chattanooga, Tenn.
Persico said High Water will have a minimum of 20 vendors — "maybe more" — at next year's festival.
“Adding more food vendors this year allowed us to ensure our patrons were able to get a quick meal without missing too many of the performances that they paid to see,” she said.
Tickets for the two-day festival cost between $144.50 and $159.50.
While they weren't as slammed as last year, crowds were perhaps lighter than desired on Sunday outside Semilla's food truck, according to co-owner Jillian Schenzel, likely because of the threat of bad weather.
"We were happy with how it went," she said. "But food vendors always want to be busier."
Southern food has been part of the festival since the event started in 2017. In addition to the food village, High Water has offered add-on experiences such as the Pass the Peas curated brunch, Low Tide Social low country boil and oyster education classes.
“We’re really just foodies putting on a music festival,” Persico said