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Pool party empowers women to reclaim and celebrate themselves

Laura Dachenbach



Women tend to form friendships through the intimacy of their conversations. Stef Streb, a body-positive photographer, and Julie Ohlemacher, an intuitive eating health coach realized they were having the same conversations about body image with their respective clients, and wanted to bring their voices together.

“We wanted to make that discussion bigger,” said Streb. “So we started Girls Night, our event series where we host an open discussion with about 30 women about what it really means to be body positive, and how to navigate a society that promotes the idea that there’s only one ‘right’ body to have, which most of us don’t.”

Photos: Megan Leigh Barnard

That conversation next led to “Sun’s Out, Tums Out!,” a body-positive pool party celebrating the beautiful reality that women come in all shapes and sizes. The event will also host a charity raffle to benefit ROX, a Columbus-based organization that creates programs to build confidence in girls and young women. (614) sat down with Ohlemacher to find out more.

(614): What has been the response to your events?

JO: Our Girls Night events have been incredible. … [Our] goal is simply to open up the conversation. It’s not about us lecturing. It’s about us creating and holding space for all women who come to have the opportunity to share their story, to ask a question, to be a part of this larger conversation of body image struggles and the devastating impact of living in a culture that praises one body size over another. For so long, body image struggles were our shameful little secrets. I always felt like I was the only one who had this struggle. I told no one, and of course, the more I kept it in, [the more] this shame expanded. Turns out, unfortunately, that many women feel this same shame, that many women struggle in their bodies. So by creating a space for us all to share and be open and to fight back against the cultural standards that hurt all of us, to illuminate the almost $70-billion diet industry that literally profits off of us feeling not good enough, it allows women to release that shame because they realize they’re not alone, and it’s not their fault they’ve felt the way they do. Woman after woman has come up to Stef and me thanking us for creating this space.


Women often measure their appearance against other women. So why do you think that all-female participation in an event like this makes a di erence in self-acceptance?

This entire event is about creating space to fight back against our fatphobic culture that hurts us all, that forces us to make these damaging comparisons. This event is about celebrating all body shapes and sizes, and when we do that, comparison falls by the wayside because when there is no ideal, there’s no standard to compare yourself against. This event is about seeing the beauty, the value, the worth in all bodies of all sizes. It’s about saying, “Hey, your body is good simply because it’s your body and she allows you to experience life, and who we are as human beings is way more important than how we look.” I mean, as women we’re told the most important thing about us is our looks. This event fights against that. It says, “Hey, we’re all beautiful, but we all have much more to o er this world than our appearance.” This event creates a space for women to celebrate themselves and each other, to support and uplift each other, to bring us all together.

How do you want women to feel as they walk away from this experience?

Empowered and celebrated. My goal is for the women who come to have an experience in their bodies that maybe they’ve never had before… an experience of true acceptance, respect, love and celebration for their body and for all bodies of all shapes and sizes. But even more than that, I hope women walk away from the event feeling more grounded in their bodies so that they can be rooted in the truth that who they are as human beings is always much more important than how she looks.

Is this event going to expand in the future?

We’ll see! I could easily see this becoming an annual event. And of course, our Girls Nights will absolutely continue quarterly!

Tickets are on sale now. Click here to learn more.

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Weekend Lookout: Harvest Fair, brewery parties, socccer

Mitch Hooper



Welcome back to another installment of The Weekend Lookout, my fellow weekend warriors. As we get through the last few weekdays and gear up for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, here are the happenings and events that are worth checking out before heading out. Hang in there, ya'll! The weekend is almost here.


Land-Grant 5th Anniversary Party @ Land-Grant Brewing Co.

Happy five years, Land-Grant! To celebrate the occasion, Land-Grant will be hosting a variety of musical acts such as Hebdo and Zoo Trippin'. Chow down on some Ray Ray's barbecue, watch the Buckeyes kick off in the evening, and of course, drink all the Land-Grant brews you can.

Harvest Fair @ The Columbus Commons

Looking to get your fall on without leaving the city? Look no further. Head over to the Commons on Saturday for the free-to-attend Harvest Fest complete with fall-themed activities for all ages. Additionally, there will be a pumpkin patch with a $2 entry fee.

Talk It Out: Endless Summer Fest @ Misfit Manor

This indie music festival will feature the likes of many local acts including Girl Fox and snarls. The day kicks off at 4:07 p.m. sharp, so don't be late!


Olde Towne East Pop-up Market on Bryden Rd.

On Bryden Rd. on Sunday, 40 different vendors will line-up for a pop-up market in OTE. Everything from matcha from Potion Matcha to lunch from Street Thyme Food Truck will be available for visitors, and it's free-to-attend.

Columbus Crew v. Philadelphia Union @ Mapfre Stadium

Not only is our faithful Crew taking on Philadelphia this Sunday, Troubled Sapiens will be performing before and during the match! The first performance will be in the parking lot from 3:15 p.m. to 5 p.m. and the final performance will take place at halftime in the stadium.

FBCC Presents: Movie Night + Beer Tasting @ Grandview Drafthouse and Theater

In collaboration with Fat Babes Club of Columbus, Grandview Drafthouse and Theater will play host to a beer tasting and movie night. Here visitors will sip craft beer, wine, and ciders as they watch comedy clips of "fat" performers throughout time. The day kicks off at 2 p.m., but FBCC recommends showing up 15-20 minutes early.

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The Weekend Lookout: 9 different ways to spend your weekend in the city

Mitch Hooper



Summer is fleeting, but luckily fall is on the way. We are entering that Goldie Locks zone of weather which means it's the perfect time to get up, and get out. From a big music jamboree with Doc Robinson on Saturday to Tyler, The Creator stopping off at Express Live, here are the events and happenings to keep on your radar.


Doc Robinson's Family Jamboree @ Woodlands Tavern

If you trust our taste with The Turbos, then having you trust us once more with Doc Robinson shouldn't be a stretch. Here's a little taste of what Doc Robinson will bring to the stage on Saturday. The Family Jamboree kicks off at 11 a.m. on Saturday and will include a large roster of local acts including Parker Louis and Hebdo.

German Village Oktoberfest @ Wunderbar

You already know the drill here: fill your steins full of Great Lakes Brewing beers, chow down on German classics from places like Pierogi Mountain, and don't even worry about the cover charge because this is a free-to-attend event.

Can Release: Opera Cream Stout @ Platform Beer Co.

New beer, who dis? Platform Beer Co. is breaking out a new can this Saturday at the taproom where they collaborated with The BonBonerie for this Opera Cream Stout. Platform will have beers ready for purchase around 10 a.m. so come early, and come thirsty.


Kölsch In The [email protected] Gemüt Biergarten

It's a beer release party in the Garten! Gemüt Biergarten is breaking out its newest brew Huginn & Muninn Kölsch from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. for just $3 in the Garten. Gemüt describes this beer as a light-bodied German ale that is malt-forward with a slightly fruity flavor.

Tyler, The Creator @ Express Live

Tyler, The Creator has been on a new level in terms of music popularity. His albums Igor and Flower Boy have received plenty of critical acclaim, and his unique sound landed him as the artist who created the soundtrack to the newest iteration of How The Grinch Stole Christmas. The often off-the-walls rapper will be taking over Express Live on Sunday evening with doors opening at 5:30 p.m.

It: Chapter 2 and Hustlers @ South Drive-in

Going to a drive-in to see an It movie, ah. It feels like the good old days again. Was I around for those days? Maybe not, but the nostalgic vibes still stand. Head over to the South Drive-in for a double feature of the newest It: Chapter 2 as well as Hustlers. Everything kicks off around 7:15 p.m., and the Drive-in suggests showing up an hour early to be safe.

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A Day In Delaware: Horse racing, kayaking, food trucks, cocktails

Mitch Hooper



It's horse racing season in Delaware at the Little Brown Jug and that means two things: you're either about to lose, or currently losing.

The beloved horse racing at Little Brown Jug, affectionately known as LBJ, kicked off on Sunday and will run until Thursday. If you're looking to get in on the action, here is where you can buy tickets.

But, if you've already spent all your gambling money and just need a break from the horses, there are plenty of alternatives available in Delaware. Here are three spots to keep in mind as you explore our not-so-distant neighbor to the north.

Kayaking at Alum Creek

Whether you hit it big on your bet, or lost it all in the first race, Alum Creek is perfect because it's free. While the views on the walking trails are great, the views from a kayak are even better. The water there is very calm with the exception of a boat passing through every once in a while making it a nice spot for beginners.

And if you're a veteran on the water, the lake is relatively large meaning you can make an entire day out of it. I recommend packing a cooler with some picnic food—peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, string cheese with crackers, and some fresh fruit—and making pit stops at some of the beaches right off the lake. And, just so I can say I told you so, leave your phone in the car, or in a water proof bag.

Dinner At The Food Truck Depot

The Food Truck Depot is a relatively new eatery and bar in Delaware and it's sure to have something for everyone. If you, or someone you're with, is a vegetarian/vegan, Encompass Eatery is a familiar face at the Food Truck Depot and they offer plant-based dishes such as a grilled caprese sandwich, or straight up carnivorous sandwiches like the hearty roast beef sandwich. Other food trucks that have made appearances include Tortilla, Red Door BBQ, and Deja Food. Also at the Food Truck Depot is a full service bar with craft selections and cocktails as well as a large sand volleyball court if you need to burn some calories.

Drinks On Sandusky St.

Delaware is absolutely loaded with options when it comes to drinking in the evening. Looking to taste some bourbon and whiskey? Check out Opa Grill And Tavern which boasts the largest bourbon selection in Ohio. Or perhaps you're more of a beer person (you are from Columbus after all). Barley Hopsters is a beer lovers heaven as it offers large coolers stocked with local, regional, and national craft beers. Build a six-pack to take home, or sip on your beer of choice while you ponder your next option.

Not too far from Barley Hopsters is Restoration Brew Worx which offers a variety of their in-house brews. And if you're looking for an elevated cocktail, 1808 American Bistro is on 29 E. Winter St—just a stone's throw away from Sandusky St. On the flip side, if you're just looking for a dive bar to call home for the evening, The Backstretch will have you covered with cans of PBRs and Tullamore Dew.

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