It's our party and we'll Yelp if we want to, and what better way to celebate turning "one" than throwing the city's biggest Yelp blowout yet—Yelp CLE's First Burstday!
About 300 yelpers and their guests got glammed up to hang out at the smARTspace at 78th Street Studios for our burstday bash. This huge, renovated warehouse spanning two city blocks now houses a plethora of local creatives and artists in its catacombs. Yelpers were able to explore the studios during the party, watch fashion shoots and experience live art in the making. In fact, Kaitlin D loved "that we could check out the cool artwork. There some fantastic pieces hiding in those little rooms!." And Rob S gushes, "this shindig definitely surpassed my expectations. Great vendors, great art, and a really cool location. Great job, Cleveland Yelp!"
Cheers to our alcohol and non-boozy sponsors for giving us a little something to get into party-mode! Goose Island brought in more ale varieties than you could shake a stick at and local winery, Harpersfield Vineyard, had our grape expectations surpassed with phenomenal glasses of vino. Meawhile, Honest Tea served up quenching shots of their delicious, natural teas and ades to thirsty yelpers working it to the spinning sounds of DJ MisterBradleyP.
Providing a ginormous spread of diverse light bites and desserts, 7 fantastic food sponsors brought their best goods, plus Yelp cookies and a huge Yelp cake—candles and all! Diana M repped, "The food was unbelievable" and Roxanne O "really liked the plantain bruchetta provided by JiBARO Gourmet Food Truck. Speaking of delicious, Touch Supper Club served up tasty crustinis, while StrEat Mobile Bistro brought the class of scallop-goodness and Umami Moto hit tastebuds hard with their take on Asian fusion. Let's not forget the the stuffed peppers from Zydeco Cajun Bistro, which just so happened to be Simon I's "favorite bite" of the whole party! Campbell's Sweets Factory had everyone up in arms over their chocolate covered treats and varieties of popcorn flavors, like the Dichotomy of caramel and cheddar! Last, but certainly not least, the Cleveland Cupcake Company brought a full tree of mini cakes featuring silly monkey and Mexican hot chocolate!
For those who wanted to bump their own fancy factor up a notch, stylists from Cut Hair Studio were offering luxurious hand/arm massages, hair consultations and up-dos. Meanwhile Amanda's Elaborate Eyes gave yelpers a creative twist with face and body painting for guys 'n gals! Local print and marketing powerhouse, Jakprints was there to help us celebrate and the handmade-hotties from the Salty not Sweet boutique showcased their homegrown goodies.
Since we were celebrating in the creative catacombs of lots of studios, why not participate in a little art of our own? Thanks to Adam Pate – The Caricature Guy, yelpers were lined up to get drawn, live, up on the big screen! Check out all the kick ass doodles on his Flickr page. And Cyan Design's Digital Graffiti Wall gave guests an artistic outlet without the fear of vandalizm—or a ticket from the police! Check out all the "spray paint" here.
Capturing all the fun behind the camera, Photosnapz photo booth spat out tons of pic strips featuring yelpers in wacky props and hats! You can see all the crazy shots on their Smugmug page. Ackey+Z Photography snapped up all the event pics and they're posted on our Yelp Cleveland Flickr account, while Rare Form Digital got the entire bash on film. See the video above or on his vimeo page.
Even with all these free goodies and indulgence, the Yelp Community didn't forget those in need. Thanks to the participation of the Cleveland Foodbank and our generous yelpers, in just three short hours we donated $534.10 and 170lbs of food!
We think Megan P but it best: "This was a great event!!! Wonderful food, music and drinks. A perfect reason to look your best. I can't see how any Yelper could have missed this wonderful evening. I was just sad at how two hours went by so quickly. The saying is true, times does go by fast when you're having fun."
Many thanks to all involved in making this event a success, whether it was behind the scenes or on the front line. Words cannot express how important you all were to pulling off this biggest Yelp Cleveland party, yet! If you attended but haven't written a review, you can read and right your own here.
Until next time,
Yelp Cleveland Community Manager