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Dollars to Doggos

Columbus-based, pet-centric businesses where you can spend your bark bucks Cats and dogs are magical, wonderful creatures. They’re weird, sometimes gross and sometimes frustrating. But most importantly, they love us (though, cats can make us question that on occasion). They give us so much, and with this recognition, a handful of organizations around Columbus are [...]
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Columbus-based, pet-centric businesses where you can spend your bark bucks

Cats and dogs are magical, wonderful creatures. They’re weird, sometimes gross and sometimes frustrating. But most importantly, they love us (though, cats can make us question that on occasion). They give us so much, and with this recognition, a handful of organizations around Columbus are working to repay pets for their good deeds. Here are a couple places that can give you and your furry friend some love.

Eat Purr Love Cat Cafe • 3041 Indianola Ave.

The Eat Purr Love Cafe is the first cat cafe in Ohio. Located in Clintonville, Eat Purr Love strives to connect homeless cats with people in Columbus. They’ve lived up to that goal; since it first opened in September 2016, 300 cats have been adopted out through the Cat Cafe, said Columbus Humane CEO Rachel Finney. And although the cafe has been great for cat adoptions, it’s really focused on bringing cats and people together.

“The primary function for the Cat Cafe is really giving people the opportunity to interact and spend quality time with cats,” Finney said.

Columbus Humane has been involved with Eat Purr Love since its early stages, helping set up policies and practices to make sure the cats, which come exclusively from Columbus Humane, are happy and healthy. Now, they’re taking on an even bigger role. With the cafe’s original and current owner Chrissy Kuras moving out-of-state, Columbus Humane takes possession of the cafe in July.

Not much will change in this next phase of Eat Purr Love. Finney says they could explore hosting more events, like more frequent cat yoga classes and an expansion of community outreach. But she says she’s primarily focused on deepening the customer experience.

“That’s our bliss, right?” Finney said, “When animals and people are happy together.”

Growlers Dog Bones • growlersdogbones.org

Growlers Dog Bones doesn’t just make delicious dog treats. Yes, they use grain from local microbreweries, and yes, they use top-of-the-line peanut butter from Krema on Goodale. But what really makes Growlers Dog Bones stand out is who is making those dog treats and what the organization stands for.

Growlers started as a workforce development program to provide a low-skill opportunity for people with disabilities who need a place to start. Their slogan, says Amy Noltemeyer, CEO of Growlers Dog Bones, is “serving man and man’s best friend.”

Created about three years ago, Noltemeyer says the organization has helped around 60 people with disabilities get on their feet. Even folks who have a limited capacity for cooking are welcomed into Growlers, which serves as a regular place to build a social life.

“We’re a niche item and our margins are really really small, so the people that sell us, they believe in us, and some of them take no profit at all,” Noltemeyer said. “I think it represents a lot of good. People try us out because they want to help us out with our mission. People come back because we make a good product.”

Growlers Dog Bones are $8 a bag, and they’re sold at a variety of farmers markets around Columbus, and at participating breweries and animal shelters.

Bark • bark.co

BarkBoxes, created by the company Bark, are a monthly adventure for dogs and their owners. Designed around a different theme each month, every delivery contains treats and toys for pups to enjoy. They’ve had a Knights of the Round Table box that featured a stuffed dragon and Friar Dogg’s Hearty Stew. Another time they had a Sniffin’ Safari them with a plush hippo and tiny vest. And don’t forget about Chewrassic Bark, which was 455 million dog years in the making.

Bark is headquartered in Columbus and New York City, and since it started with BarkBoxes in 2012, it’s expanded to e-commerce and brick-and-mortar stores. The company wants to create world’s best stuff for dogs to satisfy each pup’s distinct personality, and they do that with new and creative toys, all-natural treats and next-generation accessories.

BarkBoxes, customized based on the doggo’s size, are ordered through a monthly subscription service with prices ranging from a $29 one-month option to a $21 a month, year-long option.

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Arts & Culture

Gallery Space: Danielle Deley

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In the ‘60s, the clash of mass culture and fine art exploded. Led by New York-based artist Andy Warhol, whose silkscreen paintings of Campbell’s Soup Cans and Marilyn Monroe were instantly iconicized, the vibrant basis of his works became known as pop art. While Warhol was one of the founding pop art leaders, the lesser-recognized Roy Lichtenstein was a Fine Arts graduate from The Ohio State University in 1949 and was notable for his comic-like expressionism.

Subtly following Lichtenstein’s influential trajectory is visual artist Danielle Deley, who’s currently prepping for her Skylab show Jubilee. Her use of color is rich in tone, and her subjects are easily recognizable, with cultural nods to Frank Ocean, Barbara Streisand and the late David Bowie as Ziggy Stardust.

Photos: Brian Kaiser

“I want Jubilee to feel like you’re walking back into the height of the pop art era. I might have a more muted color palette than Lichtenstein, but I want it to make a comment about traditional fine art,” Deley said. “Each of the 2D pieces are based off of very popular sculptures in Greek and Renaissance art. Each 3D piece is taken from paintings from that same time period.”

Originally from Youngstown, Deley graduated from CCAD in 2011 with a BFA in graphic design and advertising. Spending a semester in England while she attended CCAD, Deley regularly kept in contact with her grade school art teachers, who provided encouragement and foundational skills. Their guidance led her into becoming co-president of the Columbus Society of Communicating Arts, and even illustrating Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot on a cover of Chicago Reader in April. Through Deley’s intricate, pastel design, Lightfoot is recreated into a queen of spades form.

“Sue Kwong, the creative lead for the Chicago Reader, reached out, had this awesome cover idea and wanted me to bring her vision to life,” Deley said about the collaboration. “She found me on this forum called Women Who Draw, something I submitted to six years ago. They make a space for female artists and illustrators to find other female artists and illustrators. [Illustrating the cover] probably took eight hours. It was my first cover illustration for a big publication so I wanted to get it right.”

Often visiting Gateway Film Center to see how films are composed, Deley actively studies the meticulous craft of cinematography, along with going to intimate gallery spaces to align with the art community. After graduating from CCAD, Deley would only create on her computer, but decided to transition her work into watercoloring. “[Watercoloring] then moved into gouache, wood carving, and finally painting with acrylics. My style started to take shape just from doing these small projects that popped into my head,” she said. “My first one was The Young and the Restless illustration that I have on my website and I just couldn’t stop. The style stayed the same but I would push myself with composition, size, and color.”

Currently contracting as a designer at independent digital design Studio Freight, Deley also co-created the “mind reading” board game Medium, which Two Dollar Radio attendees had the chance to celebrate and play after its release. In August, Delay also illustrated children’s (and dog lovers) book Good Night, Buckeye with author Dan Wurth, with all proceeds from the book benefitting Canine Companions for Independence. With Deley’s hectic creative schedule, Jubilee could have become an afterthought, but she assures (614) that the show’s creation was intentional, with retrospective, familial ties.

“I came up [with] the name [of Jubilee] for two reasons. One, Jubilee came from the idea of celebrating. I thought it was time to celebrate this style I’ve been creating,” she said. “And two, it’s an homage to my grandparents. My Baba would always make this rich and delicious cookies called ‘jubilees’. They were always doing a craft with me or when I would come visit they were creating something.”

With appreciation for local art venues such as 934 Gallery, No Place Gallery and Roy G Biv, Deley avidly wanted for Jubilee to be placed in Skylab, ready to share her “post-pop art” genre with Columbus. “Skylab was the perfect space to propose this show. Its view of art has always been contemporary and experimental, and that’s how I view everything I make,” she said. “Contemporary art for me is about making things weird and beautiful at the same time and that’s how I hope people perceive Jubilee.

Jubilee opens Jan. 1, 2020 at Skylab Gallery, located at 57 E Gay St., 5th floor.
Visit danielledeley.com or @danielle_deley on Instagram for more information.

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Arts & Culture

Thinking Big: The Amazing Giants bring circus arts to events across town

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If you have been to a local festival, parade, or corporate event where you’ve seen stilt walkers, fire-eaters, hula-hoopers or lyra artists, there’s a good chance you’ve been in the presence of an Amazing Giant. Founded in 2011 by Jessica Minshall, The Amazing Giants was born out of one woman’s love of stilt walking and her friends’ desire to learn the skill. Now a new challenge is looming for the group—a business expansion to Hawaii.

Working in the service industry, Minshall saw a need in Columbus for a different type of entertainment. She taught herself how to walk on stilts for a festival gig out of state. This new hobby intrigued a group of her friends, and they decided to learn, too. From there, The Amazing Giants were born. “My partner and I bought a lot of stilts and just taught people how to do it,” she said. “We all found each other.”

What began as a few friends learning a new skill and having fun together practicing it evolved into a booming business with 40 employees and contract workers, including magicians, face painters and more. They are hired for events to do everything from wearing full bodysuits covered in tiny mirrors and dancing to wearing and serving champagne from large metal skirts to dazzle a crowd.

“We have evolved with different equipment, too,” Minshall said. The Amazing Giants owns the only sway pole in the Midwest. It allows performers to create a large- scale spectacle with an extreme cirque-style pole acrobatic act without the need for a permanent installation. With hundreds of costumes, 20 pairs of stilts, and entertainment offerings of just about every circus art imaginable, The Amazing Giants truly seek to astound.

Having had great success in the Columbus market, Minshall decided to grow her business, and recently brought The Amazing Giants to Honolulu. “I had family out here that I would visit and realized they don’t have anyone doing what we do. There’s not really a group or team of stilt walkers working together,” she said. So Minshall bought six pairs of stilts, and hosts open gyms where interested performers can show off their skills and possibly train on stilts. “They don’t need to send me a resume, necessarily,” she said. “It’s about personality and talent.”

Importantly, Amazing Giants must have an abundance of confidence without an overabundance of ego. “I tell people we have to get comfortable being uncomfortable. As an entertainer you have to get over your shyness and put yourself out there.” The ability to work as a collaborative team player is also key, she said. “Our team often works in tight quarters, and whether or not it is well-received, you have to put on the show as best you can.”

Although Minshall is keeping the headquarters in Columbus, now headed by Chief of Operations Olivia Ranier, she says she is excited about the expansion and her recent move to Honolulu. “It reminds me a lot of Columbus because it has that small-town, big-city feel with a similar {\(metropolitan area) population of around one million people,” Minshall said. And the environment is ripe for her type of business. “In Honolulu, we have events year-round; in Columbus our business slows down after New Year’s Eve,” she said. “There is also a lot more tourism and a convention center that brings in a ton of people.”

Although her business has expanded, don’t for a second go thinking that Minshall is going to forget where she comes from. “A lot of times people ask me where I am from and they say, ‘Wow, I’ve been hearing a lot about Ohio lately.’ I have nothing but good things to say about Columbus and what kind of platform it’s given me. It’s a massive city with a thriving arts and entertainment culture—and it’s extremely underrated. I will be Columbus-promoting forever.”

For more information visit theamazinggiants.com.

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Sports

Big Macs and Bowl Games: Enter McDonalds sweepstakes for college football getaway

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Now that Ohio State has secured its bid to play in the 2019 College Football Playoffs, every fan across Columbus is vying for tickets to the Bowl Game. Lucky for you, McDonald’s has the answer.

Today, McDonald’s launches their Buckeye Bowl Game Sweepstakes in partnership with Ohio State Athletics, where one lucky winner will win a trip for two to the 2019 Fiesta Bowl Game on Saturday, Dec. 28, including prime tickets to the game, transportation to and from, plus hotel and travel accommodations.

Fans can enter the Buckeye Bowl Game Sweepstakes by purchasing a Quarter Pounder or Quarter Pounder with cheese from any McDonald’s in the greater Columbus area, either in restaurants or through their favorite delivery service. With each order, customers will receive a golden ticket with entry details, leading them to the sweepstakes website.

And the best part is for every submission placed, McDonald’s Owner/Operators of Columbus will donate $1 to Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Ohio, helping them meet their annual fundraising goal.

“For McDonald’s, and for those of us as local business owners, it’s about more than selling burgers. It’s about creating a lasting impact in our community,” said Mike Telich, Columbus McDonald’s Owner/Operator in a statement. “Supporting RMHC is more than just a donation, its ensuring families with ill or injured children get the emotional and physical support they need, as well an alternative to the financial burden of staying at a hotel and going out for meals."

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