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Barfly - Rated Xmas at Eastside Lounge

Slutty Claus gets Hot and Sticky with the Darlins of Atlanta party promotions

Blistery winds blast down Flat Shoals Avenue on a Thursday night as snowflakes dance on the five-day forecast. But a girl with a unicorn tattoo is promising unseasonably humid conditions. With a figurative wave of her sparkly wand (and some well-timed tweets), she assembles a slutty but nutty cast of self-professed weirdos at the Eastside Lounge.

It's the holiday edition of the monthly weeknight party Hot and Sticky, fashioned from the candy-caned brain of Sarah Mincher. The CL Lust List cover girl is a blogging barista by day, bedazzled party promoter and overseer of her sassy Sorry, Darlin accomplices by night. Her darling shorties are the type of sugar-buzzed girls to tweet "tittyz" with a "z" after they Rophenol your cupcake.

Just inside the lounge, a bartender exhales Bacardi 151 flames in the air. His fire-breathing melts the hearts of a nearby group of gay goths while the straight guys at the bar hone in on the red panties riding up the crack of one of Santa's sexy helpers. Techno beats and laser beams battle Duran Duran. It's going to be a bizarre night.

Although the shotgun bar bears an East Atlanta Village address, Eastside Lounge looks more like a dirty discotheque on whatever planet birthed the alien Lil Wayne. A far cry from its fancier origins as the Fountainhead Lounge, it has long since morphed into a younger tatted-up lounge complete with skateboard parking. Ayn Rand is probably rolling over in her smug grave. Questionable artwork only a meth-head could love is splattered across the red walls. Underneath, an odder assortment of misfits hang.

One flamboyant gentleman who calls himself Edward Scizzorheads — naturally, his haircut is jacked-up — says he's from L.A. Could he mean Lower Alabama? someone inquires in jest.

"Uh, no," he says, matter-of-factly. "I live in Hollywood. Have a nice day." And off he goes in disgust, showcasing the oversized Chanel logo trimmed in the back of his head.

It's 1 a.m. and the crowd is crammed into the small upstairs platform for the night's holiday-themed main event. The naughty girls of Minette Magnifique burlesque troop are supplying the stickiness with a performance full of pasties and plumpness in all the right places.

A farcical Jewish dancer dubbed "Baby Blitzkrieg" is declaring war on Christmas while jiggling her boobies to a Hebrew parody of "Hey Ya" and tossing out chocolate coins wrapped in menorah-imprinted gold foil. But the season is saved by a brave Rockettes-style production with spicy girls in more slutty Santa panties and leather.

As DJ Cristo Disco resumes the techno battle on the dancefloor to the cheerful delight of the crowd, the only thing missing is the sound of sleigh bells and Rudolph the hot-pink unicorn to whisk Ms. Mincher and her crew of fantasy fashionistas away.



More By This Writer

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In the back room, the dress code is strictly "Jersey Shore." House music thumps amidst a sophisticated laser tag light show. All the while, glowstick-goggled patrons ogle the sexed-up human Cirque de Soleil chandelier spinning while suspended from the ceiling. This banana boat has officially jumped the shark.

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Out in front of the club, the cliché Lambos and Maseratis are still on display; and that clique of Asian bunny rabbits is about to bounce on home. I can't help but wonder how many cheesy pickup lines they had to stomach, so I ask.

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Past the roped-off line of dapper Dans and horny bachelorettes waving a giant inflatable penis, the megaclub separates into three large, themed rooms. With a hint of Macanudo cigar aroma in the air and Top 40 Caribbean queen Rihanna blasting her sexual demands on the main floor, there's an initial sense that this place has about as much authentic Latin flavor as the ethnic food aisle at the Disco Kroger up the street.

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By the main bar nests a bushy-tailed group of Asian bachelorettes outfitted in white miniskirts and bunny ears. Surely this herd is destined to hear some of the most ridiculous catcalls of the night.

Past more velvet rope and down a hallway, it's a much different beat. Whereas the main room had about as much authentic Latin vibe as Rob Thomas singing that Santana song, the salsa room boasts legitimate Cuban flare. Silky Latinas twirl to meringue, all while Spanish accents vie for the bartender's attention in an attempt to get more bombed than that Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights movie.

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Out in front of the club, the cliché Lambos and Maseratis are still on display; and that clique of Asian bunny rabbits is about to bounce on home. I can't help but wonder how many cheesy pickup lines they had to stomach, so I ask.

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Article

Wednesday April 20, 2011 04:10 am EDT
The kitsch is mega-thick at Buckhead's cultured digs | more...
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  string(3322) "There's a new girl in town. Her name is Molly, and she loves dubstep. Molly is apparently a more pure form of ecstasy. And dubstep, a derivative of techno, is a much more difficult animal to understand.

It's the early hours of Saturday morning in a rough and tattered corner somewhere near the West End. A raised MARTA rail serves as the skyline and sketchy kids are making their way through dark alleys to the reverberating wobble bouncing off warehouse walls.

With a hint of a less shiny late-'80s Los Angeles underground, people are getting pat down — not for drugs or weapons, but for glow sticks. This ain't that kind of party. "We're grown-ups, not candy ravers" says the promoter, explaining the no-glow-stick policy.

Inside the covert party, smoke and aggressive beats billow out from an ignoble den of tattoos and backpacks. Through the Marlboro fog, a crowded room unfolds with two ceiling fans spinning their hearts out as furiously as the DJs on the stage.

The acquired taste that is dubstep is hard to define. With roots in raggamuffin reggae and two-step garage, it fuses techno with a viciously hostile bass. A young lady enlightens a novice: "It kinda goes 'didididididi WHOOMP WHOOMP!' for like six hours. Most people think it's annoying."

"Or sometimes it will go, 'p-p-p-pew WOBBLE WOBBLE!'" she adds in brilliant layman's.

Through the crowd and into an unfinished back room with spackled drywall and plywood floors, 30 or so party people are huffing nitrous out of balloons of assorted colors. It's like a bizarre birthday party in Happy Meal Land — grown kids with bouncy Cookie Monster eyes and the Hamburglar on the 1s and 2s going "wobble wobble."

A couple of cute 19-year-olds from Marietta are overheard chit-chatting away: "Life is a gift and we learn from it." The one wearing knitted mittens gets giddy with existentialism. "What if it is true? Why waste our life on something? What if there is a heaven?"

Back out by the bar, it's nearing the witching hour as things grow stranger. A florescent pint-sized shortie who looks like she could be American Apparel CEO Dov Charney's cherry-bombed play toy is standing on a step yelling random shit. "I've been 21 for two weeks ... and some girl in the bathroom asked me to lick her lady parts!"

Swaying and slurring, she then grabs a PBR long neck and begins making out with it until she eventually rounds third base and deep-throats the lucky bottle.

There are girls in pink tutus and black panties, hippies in sports bras and floor-length skirts, a pair of neon-stripped overalls from the Kimmy Gibbler collection, and a dude covered in smuggled glow sticks that looks like he just got off work from the Lady Foot Locker in outer space. It's ironic how designer drugs can create such tragic fashion.

But taking the best-dressed superlative for the evening is the dude on the dance floor with a tie-dyed shirt and ponytail wearing a Yoshi backpack with the Japanese dinosaur sporting his own little un-confiscated glow sticks.

Molly and her friends have partied till the morning sun is near. And whether dubstep, brostep, thug step, or dumbstep rattles your skull with aggravation or fills your heart with the meaning of life, one things for certain: It makes for some championship-caliber people watching. "
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It's the early hours of Saturday morning in a rough and tattered corner somewhere near the West End. A raised MARTA rail serves as the skyline and sketchy kids are making their way through dark alleys to the reverberating wobble bouncing off warehouse walls.

With a hint of a less shiny late-'80s Los Angeles underground, people are getting pat down — not for drugs or weapons, but for glow sticks. This ain't that kind of party. "We're grown-ups, not candy ravers" says the promoter, explaining the no-glow-stick policy.

Inside the covert party, smoke and aggressive beats billow out from an ignoble den of tattoos and backpacks. Through the Marlboro fog, a crowded room unfolds with two ceiling fans spinning their hearts out as furiously as the DJs on the stage.

The acquired taste that is dubstep is hard to define. With roots in raggamuffin reggae and two-step garage, it fuses techno with a viciously hostile bass. A young lady enlightens a novice: "It kinda goes 'didididididi WHOOMP WHOOMP!' for like six hours. Most people think it's annoying."

"Or sometimes it will go, 'p-p-p-pew WOBBLE WOBBLE!'" she adds in brilliant layman's.

Through the crowd and into an unfinished back room with spackled drywall and plywood floors, 30 or so party people are huffing nitrous out of balloons of assorted colors. It's like a bizarre birthday party in Happy Meal Land — grown kids with bouncy Cookie Monster eyes and the Hamburglar on the 1s and 2s going "wobble wobble."

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But taking the best-dressed superlative for the evening is the dude on the dance floor with a tie-dyed shirt and ponytail wearing a Yoshi backpack with the Japanese dinosaur sporting his own little un-confiscated glow sticks.

Molly and her friends have partied till the morning sun is near. And whether dubstep, brostep, thug step, or dumbstep rattles your skull with aggravation or fills your heart with the meaning of life, one things for certain: It makes for some championship-caliber people watching. "
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It's the early hours of Saturday morning in a rough and tattered corner somewhere near the West End. A raised MARTA rail serves as the skyline and sketchy kids are making their way through dark alleys to the reverberating wobble bouncing off warehouse walls.

With a hint of a less shiny late-'80s Los Angeles underground, people are getting pat down — not for drugs or weapons, but for glow sticks. This ain't that kind of party. "We're grown-ups, not candy ravers" says the promoter, explaining the no-glow-stick policy.

Inside the covert party, smoke and aggressive beats billow out from an ignoble den of tattoos and backpacks. Through the Marlboro fog, a crowded room unfolds with two ceiling fans spinning their hearts out as furiously as the DJs on the stage.

The acquired taste that is dubstep is hard to define. With roots in raggamuffin reggae and two-step garage, it fuses techno with a viciously hostile bass. A young lady enlightens a novice: "It kinda goes 'didididididi WHOOMP WHOOMP!' for like six hours. Most people think it's annoying."

"Or sometimes it will go, 'p-p-p-pew WOBBLE WOBBLE!'" she adds in brilliant layman's.

Through the crowd and into an unfinished back room with spackled drywall and plywood floors, 30 or so party people are huffing nitrous out of balloons of assorted colors. It's like a bizarre birthday party in Happy Meal Land — grown kids with bouncy Cookie Monster eyes and the Hamburglar on the 1s and 2s going "wobble wobble."

A couple of cute 19-year-olds from Marietta are overheard chit-chatting away: "Life is a gift and we learn from it." The one wearing knitted mittens gets giddy with existentialism. "What if it is true? Why waste our life on something? What if there is a heaven?"

Back out by the bar, it's nearing the witching hour as things grow stranger. A florescent pint-sized shortie who looks like she could be American Apparel CEO Dov Charney's cherry-bombed play toy is standing on a step yelling random shit. "I've been 21 for two weeks ... and some girl in the bathroom asked me to lick her lady parts!"

Swaying and slurring, she then grabs a PBR long neck and begins making out with it until she eventually rounds third base and deep-throats the lucky bottle.

There are girls in pink tutus and black panties, hippies in sports bras and floor-length skirts, a pair of neon-stripped overalls from the Kimmy Gibbler collection, and a dude covered in smuggled glow sticks that looks like he just got off work from the Lady Foot Locker in outer space. It's ironic how designer drugs can create such tragic fashion.

But taking the best-dressed superlative for the evening is the dude on the dance floor with a tie-dyed shirt and ponytail wearing a Yoshi backpack with the Japanese dinosaur sporting his own little un-confiscated glow sticks.

Molly and her friends have partied till the morning sun is near. And whether dubstep, brostep, thug step, or dumbstep rattles your skull with aggravation or fills your heart with the meaning of life, one things for certain: It makes for some championship-caliber people watching.              13058762 2877140                          Barfly - Last night dubstep molly saved my life "
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Wednesday March 2, 2011 04:00 am EST
An unidentified warehouse provides a wallop of bass and existential escape | more...
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  string(3156) "A whoosh of perfume and sweat zooms past me, stirring up that youthful snack-bar aroma of buttery popcorn and bad pizza. But there's something foreign inside my middle school flashback — by the lifeless skee-ball machines two shorties in tight clothes are disinfecting a portable stripper pole.

It's a school night and I'm on the Westside on Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, underneath the bright cursive bulbs of Cascade roller rink. In conjunction with the weeklong birthday celebration of Atlanta's DJ Nabs, the lovely and spellbinding female denizens of Magic City are lacing them up, as opposed to their usual unlacing, to christen the release of their 2011 calendar.

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Among other skills, the ladies have terrific penmanship. Girls with such tempting stage names as Passion and Serenity are signing the risqué glossy stock with pink swirls of the pen, taking care to dot their I's with hearts and misspell "come" when inviting fellas to visit them at the club.

"Ain't no way my wife gonna let me have one of these calendars," a gentleman says to one of the ladies. I ask if his wife allows him on the Internet? "Yeah, I learned how to do that quick toggle if I hear her coming, though."

After carefully examining what January through December have to offer, one guy jokes: "Yeah, I'd get one, but there's just no room to write any activities."

Birthday boy Nabs glides by on eight wheels while texting. He's probably wondering if his Capricorn stars might complicate things with the dancer named Virgo.

The shoe models aren't the only ones with moves; four brothers are doing laps to Ludacris with well-rehearsed dance moves and a daring four-man jump for their grand finale. The strippers with edible names, Frosti Flakes and Salt Shaker, are impressed with their teamwork.

But it's nearing midnight and past curfew for kids' games. It's time to set out for those Magic City limits to lubricate the party. Leaving the big bright bulbs of Cascade behind, the girls roll out of the gravel lot in a caravan of shiny late-model Kompressors and Beamers tearing eastbound down I-20.

If there is in fact a heaven for a gangsta, it's inside the hallowed walls of this revered downtown butt-naked club, where the skating rink's buttery popcorn smells are usurped by the scent of money, sex and cocoa-buttered ass claps.

Two talented young ladies are working the pole upside down and right side up. Like a backward couple skate, this demonstration is not for beginners. "Can I get some love for my two gold ninjas on stage in the P*ssy Olympics?!" pleads the DJ. "We got some synchronized strippin' goin on in this mutha*****!"

Greenbacks flutter to the already-covered carpet as the club shakes to Roscoe Dash's "Sexy Girl" strip club anthem: "Tattoo on yo booty that say, 'Fuck you pay me.'"

Here's hoping that the go-go girls on the portable poles back at the roller rink got tipped with enough skee-ball tickets to get all the Laffy Taffy their hearts desired. "
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But it's nearing midnight and past curfew for kids' games. It's time to set out for those Magic City limits to lubricate the party. Leaving the big bright bulbs of Cascade behind, the girls roll out of the gravel lot in a caravan of shiny late-model Kompressors and Beamers tearing eastbound down I-20.

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It's a school night and I'm on the Westside on Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, underneath the bright cursive bulbs of Cascade roller rink. In conjunction with the weeklong birthday celebration of Atlanta's DJ Nabs, the lovely and spellbinding female denizens of Magic City are lacing them up, as opposed to their usual unlacing, to christen the release of their 2011 calendar.

It's a familiar setting of hot neon and booming hip-hop in a spacious room, but these magical shake dancers are in slightly more conservative civilian clothes.

Among other skills, the ladies have terrific penmanship. Girls with such tempting stage names as Passion and Serenity are signing the risqué glossy stock with pink swirls of the pen, taking care to dot their I's with hearts and misspell "come" when inviting fellas to visit them at the club.

"Ain't no way my wife gonna let me have one of these calendars," a gentleman says to one of the ladies. I ask if his wife allows him on the Internet? "Yeah, I learned how to do that quick toggle if I hear her coming, though."

After carefully examining what January through December have to offer, one guy jokes: "Yeah, I'd get one, but there's just no room to write any activities."

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The shoe models aren't the only ones with moves; four brothers are doing laps to Ludacris with well-rehearsed dance moves and a daring four-man jump for their grand finale. The strippers with edible names, Frosti Flakes and Salt Shaker, are impressed with their teamwork.

But it's nearing midnight and past curfew for kids' games. It's time to set out for those Magic City limits to lubricate the party. Leaving the big bright bulbs of Cascade behind, the girls roll out of the gravel lot in a caravan of shiny late-model Kompressors and Beamers tearing eastbound down I-20.

If there is in fact a heaven for a gangsta, it's inside the hallowed walls of this revered downtown butt-naked club, where the skating rink's buttery popcorn smells are usurped by the scent of money, sex and cocoa-buttered ass claps.

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Greenbacks flutter to the already-covered carpet as the club shakes to Roscoe Dash's "Sexy Girl" strip club anthem: "Tattoo on yo booty that say, 'Fuck you pay me.'"

Here's hoping that the go-go girls on the portable poles back at the roller rink got tipped with enough skee-ball tickets to get all the Laffy Taffy their hearts desired.              13058026 2704252                          Barfly - Strippers on wheels "
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Wednesday January 26, 2011 04:00 am EST
The ladies of Magic City roll through Cascade skating rink on a school night | more...
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  string(3245) "There's a skinny kid in the parking lot tagging a pole full of graffiti with his magic marker. Well, shit — there goes the security deposit.

The soon-to-be-vacant icebox of a warehouse is filling up with goofy, Christmas-break kids, bundled in thrift store parkas, fingerless Misfits gloves, and the warmth of each other. It's like a loosely supervised junior high party your parents dropped you off at — silly dancing, daffy outfits and awkward boy-girl interaction. But this party has the cool mom behind the cash bar and several boys in their boxer briefs banging makeshift instruments on stage.

A couple hundred fresh-faced youngsters are braving the wintry elements on a Sunday night for the next-to-last show at Eyedrum's venerable Martin Luther King Jr. Drive location of the past decade. It's also a tour send-off show for Atlanta's new merrymakers of madness, the Back Pockets, whose newly purchased, pre-owned tour bus is sitting in the parking lot.

The bare-bones nonprofit art space — seemingly held together by cinder blocks, 20-foot-tall sheet-rocked walls and crazy glue — has no heat judging by the frosted breath exiting patrons' mouths. Wacky avant-garde art is strewn about. A plastic gold porcupine looks like it was assembled with epoxy and crappy youth league trophies. Forty drippy IV bags filled with a foreign substance (or possibly real blood) hang from the ceiling. "I hope they take those down before the Black Lips show Thursday," someone says, referring to the last scheduled concert at Eyedrum's current location, "because those things are gonna become instant water balloons."

Amongst the odd still life, real-life oddities roam. An older gentleman is popping a staple gun in the air near the Eyedrum library, filled with such classics as Paul Reiser's "Couplehood" and Lee Iacocca's page-turner "Talking Straight." A cute college girl sports hot-pink plaid pajama bottoms, sparkly zebra print flats and a poinsettia broach. "I had on jeans, but my mom spilled brandy on them. But it all comes together — kinda like that trash bag art," she says and points to a piece on the wall while pounding on a soft pack of Pall Malls.

In the main room, the performance art from the headlining Back Pockets begins. It's a colorful bouquet of city hippies: young and old, boy and girl, gay and straight, but all far-out. The gang of musical pranksters plays with up to 16 people on stage at a time, strumming or beating on anything they get their hands on — drums, bass guitar, banjo or bucket. Shirtless boys dance in their Underoos, darlings with turquoise hair sing harmonies, and the leader of the confusion, Emily Kempf, looks like an adorable mess standing on her wobbly amp while orchestrating the way with a bobbing peroxide ponytail.

"That used to be me running around this room in my panties," says Black Lip's Jared Swilley, reminiscing on his own juvenile indiscretions before label deals and international tours.

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The soon-to-be-vacant icebox of a warehouse is filling up with goofy, Christmas-break kids, bundled in thrift store parkas, fingerless Misfits gloves, and the warmth of each other. It's like a loosely supervised junior high party your parents dropped you off at — silly dancing, daffy outfits and awkward boy-girl interaction. But this party has the cool mom behind the cash bar and several boys in their boxer briefs banging makeshift instruments on stage.

A couple hundred fresh-faced youngsters are braving the wintry elements on a Sunday night for the next-to-last show at Eyedrum's venerable Martin Luther King Jr. Drive location of the past decade. It's also a tour send-off show for Atlanta's new merrymakers of madness, the Back Pockets, whose newly purchased, pre-owned tour bus is sitting in the parking lot.

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Article

Tuesday December 28, 2010 03:00 pm EST
Merrymakers revel in the art of noise | more...
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  string(3234) "As the line winds up the ramp and beyond the battered metal shack, a sexy just-ripe tomato in a slinky dress disappears into the night with a walk that looks destined for a more sophisticated setting.

"You see that girl that just walked by," says the bouncer, "she was in the club for six minutes before she got thrown out for having sex in the bathroom."

It's Thanksgiving Eve and it's time to take off the kid gloves before sitting at the kid table tomorrow at grandma's house. As usual, Turkey Day will bring about the three Fs: forced family fun. But tonight, and every pre-Thanksgiving Wednesday for the past 12 years in Atlanta, it's about three different letters: MJQ.

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Entering the café, it's Wednesday business as usual. The one-dimensional hip cats painted on the wall watch over a small, crowded space with a circle of breathing room in the middle where someone is break dancing. A girl asks what kind of music this is. "House," says her friend, "or music people don't want to listen to."

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Squeezing through the slammed corridors, there's barely enough room to reminisce. Since its modest beginnings in the basement of the Ponce de Leon Hotel, turntables have turned into laptops, clangy Britpop guitars replaced by indie-electro, and the restrooms that once resembled underground abortion clinics have been renovated into respectable places to powder one's nose.

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If the Apocalypse ever goes down, this could be the fallout shelter. "It'll be cockroaches and MJQ," says Celentano, "and we'll still be busy."

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Squeezing through the slammed corridors, there's barely enough room to reminisce. Since its modest beginnings in the basement of the Ponce de Leon Hotel, turntables have turned into laptops, clangy Britpop guitars replaced by indie-electro, and the restrooms that once resembled underground abortion clinics have been renovated into respectable places to powder one's nose.

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Article

Wednesday December 1, 2010 04:00 am EST
A family reunion of pilgrims, rump shakers and ripe tomatoes | more...
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