17 Jun 2014

Date Idea THIS WEEKEND: Creekside Blues & Jazz Festival

Comments Off $20 Date, Gahanna, Music, Outdoor, Summer

What: Great music + delicious food + local artisans + many more activities!
Where:  Creekside Park & Plaza – 123 Mill Street in Gahanna
When: Friday 6/20 (5p-11p), Saturday 6/21 (11a-11p) & Sunday 6/22 (12p-6p)
Cost: $5 (children under 12 FREE)
Discounts: Military with ID – Free / Sunday 12-1:30 – Free with donation of nonperishable food item / Pre-sale (until 6/18) $12 weekend wristbands @  the Gahanna Convention & Visitors Bureau (167 Mill St.) / AAA Gahanna $1 off coupon / Use the #2014CBJF hashtag on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest – random drawing for free wristbands


cbjf2webRob & I spent time at the Creekside Blues & Jazz Festival last year & had such a great time. We enjoyed awesome blues & jazz + delicious grub under the summer evening sky – perfect $20SummerDate! Mark your calendars for this fun festival this weekend! AND if you’re a whiskey fan, there’s a new event Saturday from 2-5pBourbon & Whiskey Tasting with “Whiskey Pete” :)

Happy Dating & we’ll see you in Gahanna this weekend!


17 Jun 2014

Baby Love

2 Comments Aside

The past several months have been a whirlwind for Rob & I – who knew pregnancy, changing jobs & multiple house projects would make the seasons pass by quickly?? ;) Now a new season called parenthood has begun for Rob & I and we cannot be happier!

Welcome Baby Leo, born 5/28/14 at 7:05pm, weighing 8lbs 14 oz, measuring 20.5 inches and bearing Rob’s eyes and my nose. We have delighted in this new season of baby love and are looking forward to watching him grow and develop (but not too fast!) :)





This summer will be a refreshed season of $20Dates with Rob & I (sometimes + baby) and $20BabyDates with Leo & I :)

Happy Dating,


14 Feb 2014

<3 <3 <3

Comments Off Valentine's Day

Oh hello romance, today is your big day! ;)

If you’re like Rob & I and you’re still trying to think of ideas to celebrate with your boo, bff or group of friends, check out the wonderful Tania’s blog, Tania Explores Columbus. She’s compiled a great list of ideas for the weekend!

Also, I was sent an article from money.co.uk with great ideas for not breaking the bank this weekend. Thanks Ella for sending this my way!

And just for fun, this is a walk down Jess  & Rob’s Valentine’s Day memory lane…



2010 – our first official Valentine’s Day together :)


2011 – Friend-Love Day!


2012 – Indoor Picnic :)


2013 – Hocking Hills retreat with no picture. So this is a week after ;) 

Much Love & Happy Valentine’s Day,


08 Dec 2013

Season of Rest

2 Comments Aside

Hi $20Daters!

We’ve missed you!

As some of you might have noticed, I haven’t been around too much lately. The craziness of life finally caught up to me with a new job I started mid-September + finding out some really cool/awesome/amazing news around that same exact time…


Baby Buscemi will be making a debut in May 2014!

Rob & I are super excited :) And with all the excitement, we naturally went into a season of rest. And boy did we need some R & R! We won’t be gone for long though. Hang with us and keep an eye out for fun $20Dates in the near future (and some sweet date opportunities as well). ALSO, this would be a perfect time for anyone who has a secret desire to guest post – hint hint nudge nudge ;)

In the meantime, have a wonderful Christmas season <3

Happy Dating,

Jess & Rob

19 Nov 2013

Guest Post #78: Capital Offense Book Date

3 Comments $20 Date, Clintonville, Guest Blog, Outdoor, Tastings

This week’s cheap & creative date is…

Local author’s formula for his perfect (unique) twist on a $20Date!

Prepare to have your mind blown.  Not only did I go on an amazing Twenty Dollar Date, but I’ve also got five boss rules that will revolutionize the way you woo your date.

Welcome to the world of Kurt Stevens, author of Capital Offense.

 Rule #1: Know who to date

There’s only one person that Kurt Stevens would go on a date with.  That person is Kurt Stevens.  I also brought along Kurt Stevens, because he’s the boss.  I guess that gives us $60 to spend, but I don’t need it.  $20?  That’s generous.

 Rule #2: Know how to party

samples_at_savor_growlYou don’t know how to party, unless you know how to party alone.

I started my date by grabbing a growler of beer from Savor Growl for $10.99.  That’s five beers of high-quality craft beer from the tap, in a take-home jug.  Plus there’s free samples from nice ladies.

Then I snagged a pint glass, and I kicked things off by drinking a beer alone in the dilapidated basement of an abandoned house.  That’s how a boss parties—alone, in a basement, preferably with asbestos.

 Rule #3: If you’re not making friends, you don’t have friends

What do you think I am, an alcoholic?  The boss is not an alcoholic.

shoeless_bumI found this shoeless bum in an alley to share my growler with.  I met him behind Savor Growl.  Dude needs glasses.  But you know what they say, “No shoes, no shirt, no social services.”

 Rule #4: Don’t take chances—take risks

We could all die tomorrow.  Asteroid.  Nuclear war.  So why eat food that you know is safe, when you can eat food from a stand that might kill you?  It’s a calculated risk.

best_in_townJudging from the fact that this gyro cart is the self-proclaimed BEST IN TOWN, it’s a good risk to take.  I won, it was delicious.  These gyros might just be the BEST IN TOWN.

How much for this calculated risk?  5 bones—you gotta eat.

 Rule #5: Never spend money when you can make money

Speaking of risks, they say you’ve got to spend money to make money–and you’ve got to have money to spend money.

That’s why my next move on this thrifty date with myself was to start an illegal back-alley craps game.  Don’t know the rules of craps? ME NEITHER.  That’s why it’s important to be the house.  As they say, he who has the back_alley_crapsgold makes the rules.

I brought in $40.  Look for my new website, negativetwentydollardates.com to be launched in a few weeks.

 Rule #6: Self-expression is important

You didn’t see that one coming, did ya?  The boss is unpredictable.  And a little bit sensitive inside.

I went to a free write-in at The Salt Mines, hosted by Columbus Creative Cooperative.  It was a great group of people who came together for a few hours of dedicated writing time, to work on their individual projects.

writing_with_the_teetotalerI sat next to this teetotaler who wouldn’t let me read what he was working on.  But it’s okay, I stole his pen when I left.

A creative, quiet end to a magnificent night with two great guys (me and myself), and a bunch of new friends.  That’s how the boss dates.

 Rule #7: There’s no such thing as a free lunch, unless someone provides a meal that you don’t pay for.

So far I’d spent about $16 and brought in about $40.  I didn’t set out to make money, so I stimulated the local economy.  I bought four bags of Grippo’s for a dollar apiece and gave them to that bum in the alley.  I started with $20 and went home with $20.  New website idea – breakevendates.com.

That’s why they call me Even Steven—Even Kurt Stevens.

Armed with these six rules for dating, you should have no trouble taking your date to the 20th level and not spending a dime.

On the other thirty days of the month, when you’re not out on a BOSS DATE, be sure to check out my serial novel, Capital Offense, which releases new chapters for free every weekday at www.CapitalOffenseBook.com.  It’ll keep you entertained during those lonesome times between dates with yourself.

There are two types of people, those who work for the world, and those who make the world work for them.  Which type of Twenty Dollar Dater are you?

If you like this date, find more at CapitalOffenseBook.com. Date Idea: Order take-out & read Capital Offense at home with your honey! Thanks Kurt Stevens for this unique take on a $20Date :)