Best of

the Twin Cities

Best Tattoo Parlor

The Ink Lab

Looking to get inked in a seedy back alley salon with your new biker friend Gus, who's getting an "I [heart] Mom" on his left bicep to match the blue prison rose on his leg? Look elsewhere. When owner-artist David Dettloff opened the Ink Lab in 1995 armed with an M.F.A., a needle, and 10 years of tattoo culture immersion, his goal was to stand out from the "seedy and mean" tattoo parlors of the day. The Ink Lab's bright, candy-colored shop is one of the cleanest (meaning safest) tattoo parlors around. Only single-use, autoclave-sterilized needles are used in viral-disinfected work areas. All the artists—David, Charlie, Ernesto, and Kryss—are licensed by the city of Minneapolis, and the Lab is regulated by the Department of Environmental Health. The shop creates true skin art of all varieties but refuses to tattoo anything hate- or gang-related and anyone underage or intoxicated. The red and yellow TATTOO sign emblazoned on West Lake Street entices full-sleeved tattoo aficionados and porcelain-skinned novices alike, so feel free to stop by, because unfortunately we won't be seeing the Ink Lab on a Minneapolis Ink anytime soon. "I'm all for self-promotion, but I'm not interested in having a camera that deep in my life," says Dettloff, who'd rather focus on doing good work. Walk in ready to get stuck by needles, and you'll walk out with a tattoo good enough to frame.

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Best Actress Christiana Clark

Best AM Radio Personality Al Malmberg

Best Art Gallery Art of This Gallery

Best Book By a Local Author Bart Schneider's The Man in the Blizzard

Best Book Publisher Graywolf Press

Best Choreographer Karen Sherman

Best Columnist Nick Coleman

Best Comedy The Lion, the Witch, and the War Hero: Or Is McCain Able?

Best Dance Performance in the Past 12 Months Mad King Thomas

Best Dance Performance of a Classic University of Minnesota Dance Program students performing Missa Brevis

Best Dancer Marciano Silva Dos Santos

Best Director Marion McClinton

Best Drive-In Movie Theater Vali-Hi

Best Fashion Show Voltage: Fashion Amplified

Best FM Radio Personality Mark Wheat, 89.3 the Current

Best Large Theater The Jungle Theater

Best Literary Magazine Knockout

Best Local-Music Broadcast MN Soundtrack, KFAI

Best Local-Music Compilation Twin Town High

Best Movie Theater Riverview Theater

Best Museum Frederick R. Weisman Art Museum

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Best Musical Hedwig and the Angry Inch

Best New Stage Gremlin Theatre

Best Place to Learn to Dance Minnesota Dance Theatre and the Dance Institute

Best Place to Read a Book Minneapolis Central Library

Best Poet Louis Jenkins

Best Print Collective Burlesque of North America

Best Public Art The Grain Belt Beer sign

Best Radio Station Minnesota Public Radio, KNOW 91.1 FM

Best Reading Series Books & Bars

Best Record Label Rhymesayers Entertainment

Best Slam Poet El Guante

Best Small Theater Frank Theatre

Best Sports Anchor Randy Shaver, KARE 11

Best Sports-Talk Radio Host Dan Cole, KFAN

Best TV Newscaster Alix Kendall, Fox 9

Best TV Station Twin Cities Public Television (TPT)

Best TV Weatherperson Sven Sundgaard, KARE 11