I went to block parties all the time while growing up in New York. A neighborhood would petition the city to block off the street, then invite everyone they knew to bring lots of food and fun. It’s a tried and true formula used by community-minded neighbors all over the country.
So what happens when you hold a block party in the middle of Silicon Valley? The formula is not much different, except that you and your kids might learn to solder metal or hack some code rather than face painting or bobbing for apples.
This past Sunday, the City of Palo Alto along with four other organizations – Innovation Endeavors, Talenthouse, Super Happy Dev House and Institute for the Future – held the first inaugural Super Happy Block Party as a way to bring the technology and creative communities together for a unique one day event on High Street in downtown Palo Alto. Yes, there was food and balloons, but only in startup land would a block party also include a live hackathon, “silent disco” and even “VC Office Hours” where entrepreneurs could just walk up and pitch their idea to venture capitalists.
A unique event for a unique place. I’ll definitely be back next year.