Stories

We Created the World’s First Pop-up Ball Pit Bar

By April 20, 2016 No Comments

The weekend of March 19th, we created the first ever pop-up ball pit bar experience at a local watering hole called the Romper Room in San Francisco. This two day event was completely sold out months in advanced. We filled this cozy bar with 40,000 ball pit balls to create a weekend that will not be forgotten.

It all started as an idea from Ryan Lum, the Forward Motion founder, who wanted to enjoy a ball pit in a bar. The owner of the Romper Room bar reached out to Ryan shortly after their last event, Massive Messy Twister, wanting to partner on a future event. Ryan pitched the idea and the rest was history.

It took quite some time to actually raise the money as we tried multiple different ways to get the money we needed in order to actually make the event happen. It took over a year to raise the money by just selling tickets to an event that didn’t even exist yet.

On the day of the event, participants were invited into the bar, which was now converted into a ball pit. The lower floor area was blocked off by wooden planks to hold the 40,000 ball pit balls that now covered the floor.

The first few sessions of the experience were pretty low key as people would sit down in the ball pit and enjoy their drink. It was generally a calm and relaxing experience as they listened to corny music from the 90s.

As the evening went on, it slowly got more and more rowdy. Later groups started splashing around, dancing and having ball wars with the upstairs.

Over the course of the ball pit we saw fun characters come in to enjoy the pit. We saw a bunch of people dressed as wedding brides, a couple doing acroyoga and even a kangaroo.

Every so often, one of the bartenders would toss a little plastic green turtle into the ball pit and announced that if it was found, that person would get a free shot of fireball.

Near the end of the event, we had a massive dance party to classic hits such as the macarena and smashing beats from the Backstreet Boys. We even had a congo line going, a limbo stick and more.

All in all we had such a blast producing the event. More importantly we had no spills or other messes. Only a couple people lost items at the ball pit but everything was recovered!

Special thanks to:

  • Volunteers – All the amazing volunteers who helped make this event a huge success. Without their help, the event would’ve never been able to happen.
  • Romper Room – Thanks for allowing us to use your amazing venue!
  • Bartenders – Thanks for keeping us all loose and serving while balls were flying!
  • Sponsors – Thanks to Hobo Hammock, Narrative, Pebble, Wearhaus, SOLO Eyewear
  • My Parents – For helping with the waivers, greeting people at the door and showing your support!
  • Press – Thanks for all the amazing people who’ve covered the event and spreading the word!

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