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Za Fest: Memphis' Largest Pizza Party Is this Weekend

The fund-raising festival also features live music and benefits Merge Memphis.

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Za Fest celebrates its fifth anniversary this Saturday, November 16th, taking over the new Black Lodge location.

"The festival started out as a small kind of DIY," says Blair Davis, founder and organizer of Za Fest. "And it still is DIY essentially, and that was its core, just for the community purposes and having other people assist. But we kind of raised our little baby, and now it's 5 years old, and the masses are hungry. They want pizza."

Power to the pizza - BRENNA HUFF
  • Brenna Huff
  • Power to the pizza

Za Fest, dubbed Memphis' largest pizza party, will offer an assorted menu of pizza from local eateries like Memphis Pizza Cafe, Garibaldi's, and Midtown Crossing. Beyond presenting a broad 'za menu, the festival boasts a diverse lineup that includes electronic music producer DJ Chandler Blingg, singer-songwriter Louise Page, hip-hop artist Coldway, and more.

"Ideally, these smaller communities of pocketed musicians can come together and see that there are cool things in the other pocket," says Davis. "I think musicians and music, especially, are fairly universal. And the more that we can embrace that the better."

This year, Za Fest has partnered with Merge Memphis, a faith-based nonprofit dedicated to feeding hungry, less fortunate people, by donating food boxes to families and stocking free food pantries throughout the city. Guests are encouraged to bring canned food items in exchange for raffle tickets or simply make a dollar donation.

"When you're a starving artist, you may not know what it's like to be a literal starving person," says Davis.

Za Fest, Black Lodge, 405 N. Cleveland, Saturday, November 16th, 3 p.m.-2 a.m., $10/presale, $15/door.

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