Imagine standing in a long line of hungry and excited customers waiting to experience the Taste of DC. You finally enter the venue and see row upon row of tents filled with food and drinks. You then hear music coming from one of the many entertainment stages, and you know you're in the right place. For the next few hours, the cuisine of DC is your oyster. 

Taste of DC 2016 is over, and I'm already ready for next year's event. Here is why you have to buy tickets to the next Taste of DC event.

1. Meet Culinary Chefs

Have you ever been close enough to a famous chef that you could touch them? Well, at this past Taste of DC, José Andrés made a guest appearance in the VIP section. Some of my friends and co-workers were lucky enough to meet him this year. José Andrés is a famous chef and owner of many restaurants in DC, including Jaleo

2. Live Cooking Demonstrations 

Isabella Ryan

In addition to José Andrés make an appearance, the Executive Chef for the new MGM National Harbor and other established DC chefs were also at the event. Food demonstrations took place on the culinary stage where chefs demonstrated how to make burrata, a semi-soft mozzarella cheese, with pesto filling inside. Guests were able to watch the different demos and learn how to make DIY treats. Needless to say, I learned many different dishes that I can make even in my kitchen back at school. 

3. Boozy Fun

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If you're more into mixing boozy drinks, then Skyy Vodka's 15 minute demos about how to make "The Perfect Martini" would have been perfect for you. There were also many special cocktails in the VIP section to choose from.

The VIP section was a special MGM-sponsored area with a cocktail bar and culinary stage separate from the rest of the event. Being a VIP ticket holder is easy, just purchase the separate ticket online prior to the event. 

If liquor isn't for you, you can try the many beer and wine tastings available at each beverage station around the venue. There were many options available for every guest. Even some hard ciders for the gluten-free bunch. 

4. Tasty Food

Hundreds of restaurants and food trucks are represented at Taste of DC every year. This gives every guest the opportunity to taste food from restaurants on their personal bucket lists. Reviews from magazines like Bon Appétit will have you running to each stand to try the amazing food. 

5. Live Music on Pennsylvania Avenue

What would a party on Pennsylvania Avenue be without music? DJ Julian has been one of the main entertainers for Taste of DC for quite some time now. When he mixes music, everyone is dancing. It's no wonder that with him as an entertainer (as well as many other great performers) that Taste of DC was a jam session on Pennsylvania Avenue.

If this seems like something you may be interested in, visit thetasteofdc.org when it's closer to the Columbus Day Weekend of 2017 to buy your tickets.