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August 18, 2010

Yelp Chicago Gets Its Fill Of 'Fest!

Posted by Johnny Todd

They came from over eight states and two countries (only one continent, though) to experience the Yelp party of the year. Not even her GaGa-ness could keep more than 3500 yelpers away from the biggest Yelp party in history: Yelp Summerfest 2010! Excited party-goers from far and wide descended upon the Irish American Heritage Center for an all-out assault on the senses (in a good way - 'natch). 

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Where to begin? 'Beer' seems like a good place to start... and with 21 craft beers at the tap, thrilled attendees thought it was a good place to end, as well. The Yelp Beer Garden played host to: Daisy Cutter Pale Ale, Gossamer Golden Ale, Crispin Original (draught), Fox Barrel Pear (draught), Blue Moon Honey Moon, Leinenkugel Summer Shandy, Samuel Adams Summer Ale, Mike's Hard Lemonade, Mike's Hard Black Cherry Lemonade, Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, Sierra Nevada Summer Fest, Woodchuck Amber, Magic Hat #9, Pyramid Haywire Hefeweizen, Shiner Bock, Trumer Pils, BridgePort IPA, BridgePort Hop Czar, and Newcastle Summer Ale. The Elite Lounge, however, was the only place one could find (and vote on) Samuel Adams Beer Lover's Choice - American Rye Ale and Samuel Adams Beer Lover's Choice - Belgian-Style IPA. Democracy never tasted so good.

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Lest one think that Chicagoans only stick to suds, Rain Vodka, Firefly Sweet Tea Vodka and Maker's Mark Bourbon provided luscious liquor libations for the crowd. Nor were the teetotalers left out in the rain (ha!) because they had their choice of Honest Tea, AMP Energy Drink, Izze Sparkling Juice, Monster Energy, and Cran-Energy. It's Summer in Chicago. You have to stay well-hydrated!

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You also need to stay well-fed. Again, this is Yelp Chicago. We've got you covered. Feeding the masses were the food phenoms of Dawali Mediterranean Kitchen, Starfruit, Chen's Chinese & Sushi, Koi, Isla Pilipina, Il Giardino Del Dolce, SuVans Cafe & Bakeshop, Italiasia, La Gondola Italian Restaurant, Delightful Pastries, Kama Bistro, Mio Bento, Salted Caramel, and Domino's Pizza. And, for the kid in everyone, popcorn and three flavors of sno-cones (not including combos)!

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Yelpers' eyes weren't the only things smilin' at all the wall-to-wall entertainment going on. The incredible live music of Ode kept the crowd rockin', while the smooth grooves of Cage & Aquarium Productions kept them chillin'. ActionBooth made sure the party stayed jumpin' jumpin' while Infuse Yoga Spa bent guests into shape. Kelly Cardenas Salon created hair heaven while the make-up marvels of Strange Beauty Show brought out the inner beauty of all who sat in their chairs. Trish Page painted on the colors and Ellen Lustig preserved the look in caricature while the sensations from ShutterBooth did so in photos. What to do when you're gussied up and moved to the music? Why, you watch the brazen burlesque of Vaudezilla's Donna Touch & Cherry Brandi.

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Suds. Drinks. Food. Fun... and Doing Good. In the midst of all the revelry, guests donated to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital and Concern Worldwide. And, we all know the best way to donate to a good cause is by dunking yelpers! All the action was captured by fantastic photogs Mike Fan and Damir Ara. You can check out all their pictures here. ActionBooth's motion magic is here. ShutterBooth's stunning portraits are here. You can read what folks had to say about the shin dig here. As they left with goodie bags full of buttons, Yelpstick and crates of beverages, guests knew that another Summerfest had come and gone — but not before it saw 1,000,000 faces (well, 3500+) and rocked them all!

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Enjoy the rest of Summer!

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Johnny T

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