Floatopia Goes Viral

Spring Break 2011: Honolulu, Hawaii.

What could be better? I had been looking forward to my week long vacation in the sun after a long winter spent in Eugene. I was expecting to surf, relax on the beach, and catch up with friends on the amazing island of Oahu. What I didn’t expect was the party of a life time. Floatopia hit Honolulu for the first time this March. What made it all possible? The amazing social network of Facebook.

Floatopia is an annual event that has been held in Santa Barbara, California since 2004. It was started by a group of UCSB students to kick off spring quarter. Participants are mostly college students and the event entails floating on rafts and handmade boat devices with music and drinks. Attendees party all day in the water and on the shore. There are usually around 800 people.The event had never been to Hawaii and not many people knew what it was. This March was the first time the hit Hawaii.

I attended the first ever Floatopia in Honolulu and let me tell you, it was a smashing success. With over 500 participants, we floated in the sunshine until dark. This event grew over night with a simple Facebook invite. People started talking, inviting their other friends, and soon the event became massive. The idea was simple and it stuck. Students as well as tourists gathered in the Ala Moana lagoon for the party of the year. Thanks to Facebook, this event spread like wildfire.

Floatopia 2011

Floatopia was missing one thing: A sponsor. What a great public relations opportunity for a products like sunscreen or energy drinks to get there name out there. I’m sure next year sponsors will be lining the beach. No matter what your age, I recommend at least seeing, if you don’t want to participate, in a Floatopia event.

Who doesn’t want to float in the sun with a margarita in hand surrounded by all your friends? But you have to remember to be careful and leave when you have had enough fun!

What a better way to kick off Spring break on the beautiful island of Oahu?

I’m sure next year will be twice as big thanks to Facebook.


About jritter333

I have an unquenchable thirst for discovery and learning. My name is Jenna Ritter and I am a Journalism and Communications major concentrating in Public Relations and minoring in business at the University of Oregon. This blog is about a pending issue in our nation's schools: The School Lunch Reform. I hope you enjoy my research and opinions.
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