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‘Tis the Season for Toys, Tidings & Too Much Fun in Columbus!



It was a magical evening filled with beer, bites, and burlesque!?

Hundreds of ugly Christmas sweater-wearing Columbus yelpers arrived at The Bluestone – a renovated and converted church – for the second all-community party of the year: Yelp in Toyland!

"This was hands-down, not-even-really-a-competition, holy-cow whizz-bang the best holiday party of any stripe I've ever been to, ever. Rollicking entertainment, delicious (free!) food, booze samples and one of the most handsome venues I've ever had the pleasure in which to step foot, yep, it was a Yelp party- WRIT LARGE!" exclaims Matthew B.

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This variety show and party raised more than $1,000 and 50 toys for charity CD101 for the Kids to ensure families all over Central Ohio have a great holiday. But of course with the good, comes a little bad… 

Turning up the heat on stage – and giving Teri D the "must-go-repent" feeling – were The Ooh-La-Las & Viva Valezz burlesque. "My old upbringing came back to haunt me with the building having once been a church and here were ladies doing their really darn good burlesque routines on stage." But the cool sounds from the voices of acoustic acts Joey Hebdo, Ryan Humbert and Phillip Fox Band were sure to excite their ears. Guest MC and Dj Charles Erickson of TheClampDown spun spectacular tunes and yelpers even had an opportunity to make music of their own on the giant floor keyboard.

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But wait a second! This WAS a variety show, right? Jest Jugglers featuring Evan Smith and Wes Bourne took the stage with unicycles & bowling pins, Swing Columbus featuring Shannon Varner and Mark Calkins showed us their moves – and aerial tossesBill Gladwell read and blew our minds, Laylia shook us all night long with belly dances that topped Mindy W's evening, and Open Heart Creatures made us think out of the box when it comes to puppetry.

Not to be outdone by the entertainment, the complimentary beverages were in a spotlight of their own! If you found yourself thirsty, Wyandotte Winery & Camelot Cellars were pouring a few of their made-in-Ohio wines, Elevator Brewery passed out locally-brewed Three Frogs IPA and Winter Warmer, Honest Tea hydrated the masses with delicious, truly healthy organic bevs, and Middle West Spirits educated and elated each yelper who tried their high-end liquors like OYO Honey Vanilla Bean vodka.

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And the food? Erica P tells us she and her friends "stuffed their faces with some of the best treats and samples of dishes from around Columbus!"  Well, duh! With savory samples from The Fresh Market, Zapico Foods and The Lodge in Hide-A-Way Hills, Buff Lo Dip, Taste By Design, Commonwealth Sandwich Bar, Banana Leaf and Yabo's Tacos, it's no wonder guests walked out satisfied.

Forget the milk 'n' cookies! Santa is going to want the sweet treats provided by Winans Chocolates and Coffees, Al's Delicious Popcorn and Three Babes & a Baker! Heather G "is seriously still dreaming about that raspberry chocolate cupcake."

Speaking of Santa… who dared to hop in the photo booth with that jolly fella? Thanks, Shutterbooth Columbus! Photos can be found here.

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As the busy holiday shopping season falls upon us, Yelp is encouraging everyone to shop local this year. Making it hard to avoid, the oversized Yelp Shops Local Pledge Wall collected the signatures of hundreds of yelpers who agreed to try to buy local this season! Want to make the same pledge and support local? Click "I'm in!" here.

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Please give the reviews a read, or write your own. We love hearing your feedback!

And if you want to see what you missed, check out the photos from Adam of GroovyDoodle Photography on our Flickr page. (Feel free to post, but please keep the Yelp & GroovyDoodle watermark logos in tact.)

"Finally, I doff all my caps for the many and varied sponsors– many of them my favorite businesses around town," concludes Matthew B. Happy Yelping to all, and to all a good-night! 

Happy Holidays & SYOY!

Elf me


Christina C (Santa's busiest red-haired elf)

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