In the 2002 article, “Community Celebrations as Ritual Signifiers.” by Deborah Smith-Shank wrote,
“Not only do community celebrations give us a sense of belonging, they can also serve as sites of inquiry. They can help us by answering significant questions about our histories, our communities and ourselves.” (1) P 57
I believe the same can be said of the celebration of our virtual communities. Events like SL16B are just as important for that sense of belonging, for place making and for connection. These celebrations tell us a lot about each other and they also tell us a lot about the teams of people behind the platform of Second Life.
Deborah Smith-Shank also states that,
“Community celebrations identify the character of the community that hosts the event..They are sites for affirming cultural identity, for renewing acquaintance with people and customs, and, of course, for commerce.” (1) P 58
We can see all of this happening in the current celebrations. Cultural identity is being celebrated in multiple ways, not just through the choice of theme but also through the exhibits and art installations where we see reflections of who we are and what our people want to tell us about themselves.
We also see what is coming in the aesthetics of the newer parts of our world with the unveiling of the new style of Linden homes and the settings in which they sit so comfortably.
The Tapestry of Time is an exhibit not to be missed. I look forward to this exhibit every year because it shows us really important aspects of our culture within the world…it reveals to us our history. For myself, I love this exhibit as much as I love the exhibits of the people of the world as I am so relatively new (I landed in world in 2016) that it pieces together parts of the world I missed out on experiencing and explains how we got to where we currently are. It makes me remember that we are all part of something…more. Something built on not only the shoulders of giants, but the dreams of ordinary people and over time, that has made something truly EXTRAORDINARY.
We renew our acquaintance with the Lindens in a time honoured tradition of being able to Meet with the Lindens. Conversations with Ebbe, the CEO will be watched with great interest for any hint of where SL is heading in the future, what we will be working towards as a community and what new innovations will enter our world. (2)
Conversations with our very our Strawberry Linden and the effervescent Xiola Linden (3), Oz and April Linden (4) and Patch Linden (5) have taken place and been recorded as well and these can be found circulating around our Second Life Blogosphere. If you missed them then you can catch up with them on the Second Life Official Youtube channel or Daniel Voyager’s blog (6).
The shopping event, is of course, HUGE! Over 100 creators have participated this year over 5 incredible sims. They have left free gifts for you and if you want to see them, you should check out Naria Panthar’s video (7) where she shows ALL of them. They also have a whole lot of discounts on their items and some of the creators even have exclusive items out!
When you head to the welcome area, don’t forget to pick up you free SL16B gifts, your special edition avatars and also your swaginator HUD to claim all your birthday gifts. This year, they have released the gifts as a hunt over the SL16B regions, with clues that are announced in your local chat as you click the HUD. So you can run around and collect them all at once.
And lastly, I want to mention a few of the vloggers and bloggers I have seen doing amazing things to bring you footage of what the celebration is like. These content creators are significant to the community and to engendering a sense of community as they record the events of the world as it happens, are sources of information and entertainment and spend a large amount of time marketing Second Life itself in positive and uplifting ways. If I have missed you out, please feel free to add your vlog or blog to the comments sections as I would also love to check it out!! I explain a bit more about these bloggers and vloggers in the video above, so I am just going to list them with their links here for you to check out for yourself:
Add to that long list, I have some important links for you to check out:
SL16B Landing & Info Page: http://secondlife.com/view/sl16b
SL16B Destination Guide Category : https://secondlife.com/destinations/sl16b
SL16B Music Faire Lineup & Schedule: https://community.secondlife.com/blogs/entry/2563-sl16b-music-faire-lineup-schedule Meet the Lindens Schedule: https://secondlife.com/destination/meet-the-lindens
SL16B Official Shopping Event – 5 regions and 100 creators to shop and receive gifts from- https://secondlife.com/destinations/sl16b/sl16b_shopping
SL16B Community Experiences to Explore: https://secondlife.com/destinations/sl16b/sl16b_community
SL16B Swaginator Gift Hunt: https://secondlife.com/destination/sl16b-hunt
And last but not least…Some Important Dates:
(1) Smith-Shank, Deborah L. “Community Celebrations as Ritual Signifiers.” Visual Arts Research 28, no. 2 (2002): 57-63. http://www.jstor.org/stable/20716064.
(2) Meet The Lindens 2019 – Ebbe Linden https://youtu.be/-rTRYAprz5M
(3) Meet the Lindens 2019 – Strawberry and Xiola https://youtu.be/mkAs2KXx4G8
(4) Meet The Lindens 2019 – Oz and April Linden https://youtu.be/1ePiNC0d8wE
(5) Meet The Lindens 2019 – Patch Linden https://youtu.be/tpyPocpzmK0
(6) Daniel Voyagers Blog – https://danielvoyager.wordpress.com
(7) Naria Panthar SL16B – ALL FREE GIFTS ON 5 SIMS – Second Life https://youtu.be/4ow7mloX8us