Great Social Media Idea: Flamingos for Fundraising

When I was in high school, my best friends and I rented Pink Flamingos from the late, much lamented Video Chest a few blocks away from my house. I was too young and too stupid to understand it, so all I really remember about it is something unspeakable happening to a chicken. Well, that and the fact that we - being stupid high school boys - left the tape (yes, it was VHS) in the family room for my parents to find, which led to a pretty awkward conversation when they decided to watch it. Let's just say that John Waters cult films don't exactly mesh with my lovely, salt of the earth, somewhat conservative Catholic parents. Now, whenever I think of flamingos, I can't help but picture my mother watching Pink Flamingos and thinking that her youngest son was seriously disturbed.

But all of this is neither here nor there... I must push aside that mental image to bring to you this delightfully bonkers Fill the Hill fundraising campaign by the University of Wisconsin.

It's all explained on the website, but if you're too lazy to click though, well, I'm here for you. Every gift to the Wisconsin annual fund made on Oct. 6 or 7 resulted in a pink flamingo lawn ornament - yes, those tacky, plastic tributes to bad taste and year-round Christmas lights - being put on a quad on campus. Apparently this hearkens back to something that happened on campus in 1979, when some students pranksters put up more than 1,000 of them.

(I'm not sure of "flocking" is a thing in cities outside of Portland - I never take the weirdness of Portland for granted - but at least here anyway it's a somewhat common way for people to do fundraisers... it amuses me to no end to see something like this happen on a college campus.)

Wisconsin did a nice job promoting this event on social media, and the hyperlapse video they created that shows off the flamingos covering the hill was a great bit of last-minute hustling. 

Good stuff, Badgers!

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