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It’s been a wild, magical, marvelous ride, everybody! After 40,000+ articles, almost a million photos, 600+ Best Weekend Bets, 300+ events, 2000+ emails, 74,000+ tweets, 7600+ Instagram posts and 700,000+ uses of the #BYThings hashtag, the BYT train ends today; we’re officially transitioning to Exactly Agency full-time (you can read more about that here), a creative agency born of the same fire that we hope ignited inspiration and joy all these years. We’re super grateful for the BYT community (we couldn’t have built what we did without all of Y-O-U, so THANK YOU), so before we close this chapter (and don’t worry, the site will remain up for purposes of nostalgia and some genuinely great content), we wanted to open up the floor to our readers to share some favorite memories. Here those are!

“I have attended and bartended at more BYT parties than I can remember (or not remember). Top hits: The Vitamin Water party remains one of the best events in DC in the past 12 years. Absolutely incredible celebration of art, music, and the underground pulse of culture that inhabits this city but is not always seen. The Pride opening party at the Wonderbread warehouse was a pure, sweaty dance-a-thon celebration of Pride that just brought together the city in the most jubilant love-filled atmosphere I’ve ever experienced. The mechanical shark at the Bond-themed Spy museum party… chef’s kiss. The Labor Day champagne soiree at the French Embassy, the NYE bash at the Mexican Cultural Center, the Halloween party in that hidden ballroom on K Street, Amanda Lepore… So many more to speak of, I don’t have the space. Thank you for everything you’ve done for the past 15 years. BYT is forever part of the fabric of DC. Good luck with Exactly!” – Katharine

“ZISSOU GIRLS! We were possessed by the spirit of Zissou that Nat Geo party and made sure to have an adventure of a night. I will miss EVERY Nat Geo party as the perfect DC combo of chaos, learning, and most excellent weirdness. I wonder if those Nat Geo halls will remember me” – Paige

“The pool parties in a then-empty and undeveloped Navy Yard are utterly bizarre and perfect memories. I went to two in the summer of 2010, fresh from college graduation. They properly introduced me to the city I grew up in, but until then, really didn’t know. Sure, the monuments, the museums, the seat of government. But until BYT events, I was stupidly unaware of the bubbling culture of the creative people of DC. Only then did I realize DC was a place where people chose to live and thrive and make stuff. I promptly left for six years–to Boston and then New York–but upon my return in 2016 I knew there was a community to come back to, people doing fun and brilliant and interesting things. BYT has always been the center of that. I’ve missed the pool parties but every time I see the Capitol Skyline I remember what Navy Yard used to be, and the weird sort of fun BYT used to provide to the (sort of grown-up) kids of the city.” – Emma

“I have so many lovely memories and thoughts about BYT, but I think waiting in a line of the murder-curious to get a selfie with Paul Holes during his ‘Evil Has a Name’ book tour stands out as one of the weirdest and most wonderful.” Christina Brown

“My steampunk art gallery just opened and I saw a post on BYT – I was in disbelief that someone from such a cool organization saw my gallery! This, by far, was one of my best memories related to the shop. Will always be grateful for your support of DMV (and beyond!) communities and businesses.” – Cynthia

“When I moved back to DC after being gone for a while, you helped me get back in the swing of things – from Nat Geo at night to seeing Tycho project onto the walls of the Hirshhorn Museum to the National Archives Museum at night, you all helped provide some of the best memories I’ve had in recent years in DC. Thank you for hosting and presenting DC to the people who live here! You’ll be missed!” – Jason

“I’m in a floating castle. A man in a Borat speedo is passing out Heinekens. Girl Talk plays, I love this song. A tan woman riding a gold swan challenges me to a duel. These tacos are surprisingly delicious. Can you get me a mojito? The float deflates, the music stops, summer departs. It promises to return, someday.” – Sadie Dingfelder

“Women’s History Month celebration with all of our amazing featured ladies – engineers, lawyers, writers, filmmakers. Telling jokes in our RBG shirts at dive bars, drinking the inspired nerd recipes by the amazing women bartenders of DC. Most importantly, we all became FRIENDS and started building COMMUNITY. THANK YOU. Forever grateful to you, Svet, Brandon, Armando for making that possible. Also, ammmmazing Burning Man party at the Renwick! Marissa did such an amazing job! It was really FUN to collaborate with her on it. <3″ – Amy Morse 

“Friends and I went to the Halloween parties at the Sphinx Club hosted by BYT two years in a row. I think 2012 and 2013. They were blurs of evenings filled with dancing, the best costumes, and fun opportunities to meet new folks. Hypnosis show and those funky code rings! I fell in love with BYT senior year at a DC uni, and it was my ‘coming of age 20s edition’ source for all things years after. I will miss you all so much and wish you the best!” – Lauren K

“SO MANY!!!! Vitamin water was an epic summer. Also, POOL PARTIES! These ‘aging hipsters’ will never forget those golden years. -Love, Chris, Katy and Rowan (the youngest Brightest Young Thing) <3” – Katy Schmid 

“The BYT Relaunch party at RnR Hotel was an epic moment in time. It was a marathon event of covers-only sets by DC’s finest bands, and we were stoked to be part of it. Nihilitia practiced in a tiny green basement for weeks to get our songs just right. Ten+ years later I am still floored by how our drummer nailed the intro to Hot for Teacher. That thing is actually is three separate drum tracks, meaning Brad did something not even Alex Van Halen could. RIP DBS. RIP BYT. Thanks for the memories.” – Sara Hussain

“Dandies seersucker rides, Air an Space museum party” – Thomze

“When I first moved to DC a few years ago, I didn’t have any close friends there (just lots of Grad school acquaintances!) Signing up for the BYT newsletter meant I had places to invite people, unique/interesting events to bond over, and the chance to build some of the closest friends of my life. You’ll be missed!!” – Francesc

“I will miss BYT! I moved to DC 8 years ago and it became my ‘go-to’ for finding out about events around the city. I am the connector/planner in my group of friends and would rely HEAVILY on Best Weekend Bets to plan events for my group. That aside, I LOVED the parties. It was so cool to be in the museums after hours. The Air and Space Museum event was incredible. It’s not goodbye, BYT, it’s “see you later”. Thank you for helping shape the last 8 years of my DC experience!” – Rebecca

THANK YOU ALL FOR THE MEMORIES! Sending big virtual hugs to all of you, and we hope you’ll keep an eye on us (at exactlyagency.com and our @exactlyagency Instagram) and think of us next time you or anyone in your network needs creative agency help. We love you!

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