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Posted on Tue, Oct 9, 2012 : 12:42 p.m.

'Romance boutique' to host grand opening party in Bongz & Thongz basement this week

By Lizzy Alfs


Tanya Brown is operating her 'romance boutique' in the basement of downtown Ann Arbor's Bongz & Thongz.

Melanie Maxwell |

Several months after Tanya Brown started operating a romance boutique in the basement of downtown Ann Arbor’s Bongz & Thongz, she’s planning an ‘erotic’ grand opening party for the public.

The boutique — called “Get Curious with Safety Girl” after Brown’s 1990s Community Television Network show — sells women’s clothing and adult novelties.

According to the Ann Arbor Observer, Brown stepped in to run the adult novelties side of Bongz & Thongz after the store’s owner battled with the city of Ann Arbor over an obscure ordinance that restricted the sale of sex toys.


Tanya Brown, pictured in 2010 as her alias 'Ypsi Girl', shown with Jesse Sinatra while filming an episode of their show. file photo

The 34-year-old ordinance does not allow the sale of sex toys at an adult entertainment business in the D1 district of downtown if they amount for more than 20 percent of a business’ sales. In an effort to open Bongz & Thongz quickly, owner Kilo Hassan just scrapped the adult novelties portion of his store.

That’s where Brown stepped in. (Read more about her history in Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti from the Observer.)

The grand opening for the Get Curious with Safety Girl boutique is planned for Oct. 13 from 5 to 10 p.m., located in the basement space at 119 E. Liberty St. There will be a D.J., giveaways, refreshments, photo shoots with models and raffles.

Donations for the raffles will go to Plymouth-based First Step — an organization that works to reduce the incidence of domestic and sexual violence.

Lizzy Alfs is a business reporter for Reach her at 734-623-2584 or email her at Follow her on Twitter at



Thu, Oct 11, 2012 : 1:48 a.m.

I have only positive things to say about Tanya. You can't judge someone you don't know, all of you naysayers. And those offended: grow up. We have rights in this country so stop trying to take them away from everyone else just because you are uptight. That is all. :)


Wed, Oct 10, 2012 : 10:49 p.m.

Tanya is a wonderful woman and a great success story. If you have never been to the shop I suggest you actually go there before making a judgement. I met her when we were both in business classes at WCC and find her to be an open, honest and enthusiastic person. We don't live in Victorian times and getting in touch with your sexuality is a wonderful thing. If its not your cup of tea stay away. If you are interested in supporting locally owned businesses I suggest you stop in. One very interesting FACT is that the person who wrote this NEVER had any contact with Tanya. doesn't do homework anymore.....


Wed, Oct 10, 2012 : 7:54 p.m.

Congrats! I will be at that Grand Opening! And to all of you downers, unless you've been inside the store, keep your traps shut. I have been in it and there is nothing trashy about it.


Tue, Oct 9, 2012 : 8:59 p.m.

You go girl!


Tue, Oct 9, 2012 : 8:29 p.m.

please! Romance is a man that treats you wonderful at all times, cooks most the meals, does the honey do list without complaints and then asks "what else dear".


Tue, Oct 9, 2012 : 5:22 p.m.

There are many things that make the Ann Arbor area a great place to live. This isn't one of them...


Wed, Oct 10, 2012 : 4:05 a.m.

disagree. sexual liberation is part of ann arbor culture, just like uptight intellectualism and drunk frat boys.

Guinea Pig in a Tophat

Tue, Oct 9, 2012 : 5:21 p.m.

"The 34-year-old ordinance does not allow the sale of sex toys at an adult entertainment business in the D1 district of downtown if they amount for more than 20 percent of a business' sales." The sex toys must be less than 20% of business because there are certainly some for sale in the lower level.

Unusual Suspect

Tue, Oct 9, 2012 : 5:07 p.m.

So, at the grand opening there will free spankings and also a collection to fight domestic violence?


Tue, Oct 9, 2012 : 7:46 p.m.

She was a victim of domestic abuse, so I'm assuming that's the connection between her shop and First Step.

Jack Campbell

Tue, Oct 9, 2012 : 4:57 p.m.

Raunchy garbage.