Citizen Wausau

A Site About Life in Wausau, Wisconsin

Voice the official Citizen Wausau blog

Taking Online Offline

by on October 23rd, 2007

Last week we hosted a Launch Party for Citizen Wausau at Citizen Desk. We had a great time and the event got people talking – in fact, we were asked several times if this could be a monthly event – or at least one that happens more frequently. This got me thinking.

Why not create other opportunities to take this online community offline?

I imagine being able to host groups, clubs or individuals for organized (or unorganized) meet-ups. There was this non-profit meet-up I used to attend in San Francisco called Net Squared, where they partnered non-profs with technology. Pretty cool stuff.

A couple of weeks ago I attended a large scale meet-up called Barcamp in Milwaukee. This was an “un-conference” where anyone could participate or present. It was an amazing chance to network with other geeks in the state, reconnect with old Wausau acquaintances and make many more new ones!

Back in the RockWater days we used to have LAN parties for online gaming and that sort of thing – it was a great time!

That said, we have this space at Citizen Desk that could be perfect for these sorts of activities.

I searched on Meetup.com just to see if there is a perceived need for such space – but there does not seem to be a whole lot of people using this tool to advertise meetings happening around Wausau. I found similar results when searching Upcoming.org.

There’s just so many ways we could connect to each other in ways that this site doesn’t provide for (although I understand there are those that are fine with that). So, I’d like to put this out – what kinds of events or meet-ups could we get going to create further community?

Here’s a few suggestions I’d throw out:

  • Friday night happy hours
  • Writing classes
  • Discussions or workshops for programmers
  • Weekend hack-a-thons
  • Graphic designer meet-ups or critique.
  • Poker or board game nights

Possibilities are endless, really – if you were to leave the comforts of your home to attend an event, what kinds of things would you be interested in attending?

Personal note: My wife and I have a son with Cystic Fibrosis – it sure would be nice to connect with other parents who have children struggling with life threatening diseases. Just another thought.

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