WWFM XVIII Huntsville, Alabama will start near the Eternal Flame in Big Spring International Park, between the AC Hotel and the Huntsville Museum of Art. It will start precisely at noon and end at noon-thirty. Come prepared to gather quickly, eat a hardy meal*, and disperse like nothing happened!
While living in San Diego, GameForTravel (G4T, aka Bobby) attended at least one flash mob event hosted by Sonny and Sandy, the Podcachers, the creators of this type of coordinated events. Since moving to Alabama, G4T has hosted several WWFM events, including: a pool party where there was no pool; a Derby Day Parade, a June phoon at Calhoun; a picnic in a park; a pontoon boat; a battle with water pistols, and even one in Rome (Italy, not Georgia!). All of his events have copied the style of a Podcacher event: three gatherings in three locations within the allotted time. That became a bit easier in 2015 when minimum event lengths were introduced.
The theme for this event is “Bubbles, Baubles, Balloons, and Balls”. If you have attended an event hosted by GameForTravel then you are probably familiar with his love for the first and third items listed. The host will provide a variety of all four items (plus chilled water), and everyone is encouraged to bring their own selection of each to use and/or share:
Bubbles: from little bottles with tiny wands to mega bubbles with massive looping ropes
Baubles: audacious and colorful things you can twirl, especially if they hang around your neck (I’m thinking Mardi Gras beads here – or your grandmother’s cheap and gaudy costume jewelry)
Balloons: those that can be inflated with helium – or your own breath (be careful not to hyperventilate!), or those than be twisted into animals and hats and swords
Balls: from ping pong, golf, and whiffle… to basketballs and beach balls (what could the plan be for all of these things?)
Before noon – arrive a few minutes early to find parking, gather your stuff, and head towards Ground Zero – but not too close. Do what muggles are doing: walk on the sidewalks, admire the ducks, avoid the duck droppings, have a picnic on a blanket, hunt for a porta-potty… Remember, your “stuff” should be hidden in some fashion.
Exactly at noon (with the appearance of the maroon bucket) - approach Ground Zero with all your stuff.
12:00–12:02 – Write your geocaching username - and other requested info – on a note card and drop it in the bucket. You are also invited to sign the new trackable log book as time permits.
12:02–12:10 - Inflate and/or reveal balloons and sort through the balls that are available and display your bodacious baubles
12:10–12:15 - Make our way to the second location
12:15–12:20 – Enjoy the scrumptious* “feeding of the masses”
12:20–12:25 - Make our way to the third location
12:25–12:28 – Enjoy ourselves immensely; hand out door prizes; introduce yourself to new geocaching friends, share pictures and stories of our favorite geocaches, experiences, and/or trips; discover the secret of solving a puzzling puzzle cache; convey how to handle interactions with the police, rangers, and dogs; demonstrate how to use a compass, GPS, or other Tool Of The Trade; embellish the story of finding and defeating that tricky gadget cache; review a video of fantastic event; discuss plans for the next WWFM, CITO, or MEGA events; describe that delightful power trail you conquered, or simply relish in the warmth of fun and fellowship of time spent with fellow geocachers
12:28–12:30 – Group photo!
12:30 – Disperse quickly and quietly.**
* You do realize that the time allotted for “feeding of the masses” may include some time for walking plus the distribution, dispersion, consumption, and cleanup of the “food”, right? Don’t expect a catered, sit-down, ten-course dinner using silverware on a white table cloth and folded cloth napkins. A handful of scrumptious duck food is possibly all you should expect.
** It is possible to regather away from Ground Zero. Didn’t we just discuss that between 12:25 and 12:28?
Any questions? Just hold them till after the event. The host will be too busy to answering them once the bucket appears.
WWFM – World Wide Flash Mobs – A fun and friendly way to promote geocaching around the world.
Thousands of geocachers at dozens of coordinated events spanning the globe, gathering at the same time.
Sonny and Sandy of the PodCacher podcast came up with the WWFM idea in 2007 after attending a mega-event. It was meant to be a fun “opposite” of a mega-event: all the cool aspects of a geocaching event, crammed into 15 minutes of excitement. An added dimension is represented by the letters "WW" - World Wide - these events occur across the planet on the same day at (mostly) the same time! These caching events are intended to bring geocachers together in a creative way, as well as introduce others (newbies) to the hobby.
Check out the History of the Geocaching WWFM events.
Read more about (non-geocaching) Flash Mobs on Wikipedia.
Watch some elaborate Flash Mobs on YouTube.
Of course we will be following the state, county, and local health requirements due the COVID-19 pandemic. If you are sick, stay home! We will be practicing safe social distancing. Hand sanitizer will be available. Everyone should have a mask with them just in case.
Announcements will made when/if necessitated.