A Twestival in San Francisco?

Last night at Paradise Lounge, in conjunction with dozens of other similar events happening throughout the world, the San Francisco Twitter community came together to support Charity: Water – a non-profit designed to help provide clean drinking water to the world. Just what was this event? Why it was a Twestival! Perhaps one of the biggest events that uses the microblogging application, Twitter, for a global non-profit/charity initiative, Twestival held multiple events throughout the world, from Cape Town, Africa to Syndey, Australia and Tokyo, Japan, and ultimately to over 75 cities right here in North America.

The Twestival San Francisco event was the one I happened to attend and at the end of the night, I’m surprised that it had to end! I thoroughly enjoyed meeting people, many who I’ve never had the chance to have an intimate conversation with but have followed their adventures on Twitter and other social networks, but the entertainment was really good as well. As I made my way throughout the evening, it wasn’t a business networking event, oh no, but rather it was one where people could simply gather together and chat about what’s going on in the world and also maybe just connect a little bit more with the people they see everyday…online, that is.

But just how important was the Twestival event? It was such an important (and to be cliche, historic) moment when Twitter’s power really took its prominence to a whole new level. Twestival was one fo the events for the ages that drew several folks from Twitter out into the crowds including the godfathers of Twitter themselves, Biz Stone and Jack Dorsey. And as an added bonus, the “second-most followed person on Twitter” was in attendance: Kevin Rose of Digg fame.

Virgin America’s walking brand.

I was impressed by Virgin America’s presence at the San Francisco Twestival. They had a representative come out to mingle with the crowds and as part of their contribution to Twestival, offered round-trip tickets at a silent auction. But what really took the cake was when I saw the representative make his way around the venue, he didn’t try and sell the brand. Sure, he had a Virgin America shirt on, but he wasn’t looking to push it on anyone. Perhaps one thing that I thought could have been aggressive is asking people “do you follow us on Twitter“, but it’s a good ice-breaker though. He basically added a human face to their brand – which is what Virgin is all about, right? Now will they take that and apply that to their social media campaigns?

Celebrities in the house.

One of the best things about attending these fun events are that you have a chance to meet interesting people, and some are even the A-list celebrities that you think would be cool that they knew your name. But in real life, many of these A-listers are regular folks like us and I’m privileged to have met them. Last night’s Twestival was no different. I had a great time chatting with folks like:

It’s a networking event, people!

While the event was only five hours long, it seemed too short, in my opinion. I had thought that I wouldn’t stay that long, but after talking to a bunch of people, when I left, I was surprised that I stayed the entire time. Big kudos to the organizers of Twestival as I believe this was one of the best events that I’ve been to this year. I’m especially thankful that I had the chance to connect with great folks like Ginger Wilcox, Adam Helweh, Brian Remmel, Gray Powell, Jason  O, Wesley Barrow, Lisa Eskey, and MANY others.

If you’re wondering about photos, unfortunately I don’t have that many this time around, but you’re more than welcome to scope out Jason O’s or Adam Helweh’s photos. You can also catch up on the buzz by following along with the hashtag on Twitter: #twestivalsf.

Great time by all. When are we doing this again?