Strike up the band! Those craving a little freedom from the typical backyard 4th of July BBQ got to dance their way to an epic stars-'n'-stripes event . This year, they rocked out at Yelp’s Independance Day Party at The National Underground Railroad Freedom Center!
“The 4th of July, another hot day that people insist on cooking out, bringing over relatives you really don't want to deal with and lame fireworks that just leave you wanting to see more… Not this year! This had to of been the best party in town. Heck, in the whole state!” Stephanie S exclaimed. And we believe her.
Over 700 people walked through the doors of The Freedom Center for a night of food, drinking, entertainment and more music than you could shake a sparkler at.
“I love the big Yelp events. They offer something for everyone: vegans, whiskey lovers, beer lovers, music lovers, foodies. All you have to do is move along swiftly trying out each table and then go back to your favorites,” Ann L declared.
She particularly took a liking to the food, where local restaurants served up amazing eats, including Andy's Mediterranean, Cincy Bag Ladies,Crock Of Love, Date, Gramma Debbie's Kitchen, Cincy's On 6th, Keystone Bar & Grill, Mt. Adams Pavilion, Sis's Family Affair, and Whole Foods! Delicious desserts came courtesy of Sugar Cupcakery, Sweet Peace Bakery, The Cookie Fairy and Yagööt.
“Some of favorites were Sis's Family Affair's fish and rice, Mynt's Raspy Voice, Crock of Love's honey mustard pulled pork, and Cincy on 6th's Chicken Salad on Croissant. We are bookmarking those places to visit soon,” Ann continued.
All this eating was bound to make someone thirsty, and with drinks sponsors Alpine Valley Water, vitaminwater, Corner BLOC Coffee, Neons, Luxe, Mynt Martini, Scene, and Whisky Bar (as well as beer from our charity sponsor Necco), and it was easy for anyone to stay parched.
“The bartender from Mynt told me he was going to make me the best drink I'd ever had – a lofty claim, but it has to be said, he pulled it off,” Kristin C told us.
Of course, what really made this event special was the dance in the Independance Day party! Five amazing local bands played throughout the night, including This Is That Recording Studio's Local Ghost, Taylor Alexander, One Day Steady, The Touchables and twig & leaf and ICB Audio & Video kept the sound sounding awesome.
If that wasn’t enough, Make It Happen Music's main fiddler man Preston Charles greeted people at the door, NXTLVL Artists’ DJ Flyboy killed it with a top floor dance party and we all got karaoked away with Hot Wheels Entertainment doing giant karaoke in the auditorium!
“I think we happen to be lucky to live in a city with so many wonderful local bands!” Adrienne C sang out. “I really loved The Touchables, who played a lot of feel-good songs, and even mixed it up with their rendition of, This is How We Do It. Yes, the Montel Jordan song. If you've never heard three white boys with two guitars and a drum set perform this song, you're missing out!”
Guests were even more entertained with photo booths from The Owens Group and ShutterBooth, free massages from Intuitive Touch, an interactive booth from The Taft Museum and some fantastic caricatures from Mike Altman, who “did a great job,” according to Tony S. “He did a drawing for us and all of my other yelper friends and had a smile on his face while he did it.”
Anything else, Scott L? “While the party was raging, you could also go through the exhibits in the Freedom Center. The one about music was phenomenal. You even got to see James Brown's jumpsuit! So very very cool.”
To end the night, yelpers traveled outside to the brand new Smale Park in order to watch the 4th of July Fireworks. We even had a few surprises for them: “Sparklers! I had a lot of fun running around like a fool doing fake parkour off the big stones in the back area. Maybe next year we can add some snap pops to the mix,” John B shot off.
It clearly was a great party on a great day. “What better way to celebrate America's Birthday than with free food, free drinks and free entertainment at the Freedom Center! “ Jillian F exploded.
“This was my third time to celebrate 4th of July in Cincinnati and it was the best so far! The party was awesome and well organized, everything from the venue to the music, food, drinks and entertainments. I really loved the Freedom center: it's beautiful, spacious and has a pleasant view. I'm usually not interested in taking visitors to such museums but this one is now definitely on my list of best things to see in Cincinnati,” Reem B wrote. “Thank you Alex and Cindy for such a wonderful evening.”
But don’t just take our word on the night’s awesomeness, you can read all the reviews right here. You can also check out the other awesome pics by photographers extraordinaire Anna Penny of Anamedia on the Official Yelp Flickr page! (Video above by Nathan Penny of Anamedia.)
This one? Why, it went off with a bang!
Alex S, Yelp Community Manager