On Wednesday, October 4th, 2000, hundreds of balloon twisters in communities all across the United States (and even the world!) twisted animals and other sculptures for free, donating their twisting time to one of their local non-profit organizations, schools, hospitals, nursing homes, day care centers, churches, government offices, or even out in the streets...just for the fun of it! It's such a fun event that the Governors of Nevada, Alaska, Rhode Island, and Indiana proclaimed it Balloons Across America Day.
In the words of the organizer, Jeff Brown:
The simple act of giving is an incredible thing. It encourages others to give and makes the world a better place, even if just for that one special moment. The amazed look on faces young and old while watching the transformation of a simple balloon to a dog or hat is a sight to see. If we can inspire a day of happiness, perhaps we can inspire others to do the same in their own way. We're hoping to have smiles stretching from coast to coast...and beyond!
Everyone had their own reasons for joining in. All, like Jeff, were most interested in creating smiles. But everyone chose to do it in a different way. Some created smiles by handing out balloons for free in some public place. Others sold balloons and donated the proceeds to children's charities. There were some people that chose to create large displays in public libraries. A few even taught classes, launching new art careers in youngsters.
Aside from everything else, this was an opportunity for balloon artists to draw attention to a young art. Few people understand and appreciate what can be done with balloons. By giving time in a free and fun way, people all over the world had a chance to see why we love what we do. If we did it right, we made others want to join us and explore even more possibilities in the world of balloon twisting.
Click on any of the links below to see all of the photos from a particular area.
Peggy Broadwater created a scarecrow for her local library.
Stacey Schmude taught balloon art to kids at her local library
Freda Whaley twisted balloons on the radio and taught a class to an attentive group of children.
A group of 18 people joined forces at the Henrietta Library in Henrietta, NY to build a fairy tale castle.
There are few better ways of making kids in a hospital smile than to twist balloons for them.
Sunshine Tree Preschool at Southside Assembly of God Church with Colors and Giggles.
Uwe Lenhardt (Lenny) joined in. He was the first to take BAA Internationally.
More information about Balloons Across America 2000 can be found at Jeff Brown's web site.
Information about Balloons Around the World 2001 is going online now.
Thanks, Jeff, for organizing this.