Lightsaber Flash Mob in Washington Square Park
words: Bonnie Burton
On Saturday, September 24, Star Wars fans in New York City invaded Washington Square Park for a massive lightsaber flash mob organized byNewmindspace.
StarWars.com chats with New Yorker Lisa Reid about her experience as a Jedi for the night at the Washington Square Park Lightsaber Flash Mob event.
How did you find out about the lightsaber flash mob?
I’ve lived in the Washington Square Park area for about 7 years now. Back in 2008, I came across this — pretty much a bunch of college kids in the park with lightsabers, dueling amongst themselves. A few weeks ago, I saw an event posted on Facebook for a lightsaber duel in Washington Square Park and I was like, “There is no way I’m going to miss this!”
Who organized it and why?
I don’t know too much about Newmindspace — the guys who organized the event. I do know they’re the same guys who organize the huge pillow fight in Union Square every year. The lightsaber battle is more my speed.
Did people bring lightsabers or did they give them out?
A lot of people brought their own, but the organizers did make lightsabers available for sale — reserve them prior to the event, pick them up at the event, and if you didn’t, they sold them first come, first serve. The girl next to me had a one of those retractable/antenna lightsabers that you can get at Toys ‘R Us for $10.
Have you ever been involved in a flash mob before?
Of course! Via YouTube, like 99.5% of people out there.
Describe what it was like seeing all those lit lightsabers waving in the air?
It was cool. You really have to hand it to all of the people who made it out that night. I’m guessing there were about 500 to 600 people wielding lightsabers on Saturday night. I mean, you see a lot of things in the park. But it was really nice to see all of that positivity — people just out to have a fun time.
What was the best costume you saw?
I’m so sad! I saw Twitpics of some pretty cool costumes but unfortunately none of them were near me so I didn’t get any pics of them! Most of the people around me were decked out in robes — I think one of the sponsors was giving them out. My kid flirted with a Princess Leia, so I guess she gets best costume in my book.
Why do you think Star Wars fans rock?
Star Wars fans are awesome. There was a grand mix of college kids, young kids, people with kids, kids at heart. I fall into the People with Kids camp. When the Star Wars fans were touching their lightsabers in the air together, one guy was sweet enough to give a lightsaber to my one-year-old son to hold up. Made his night.
As credited to the Star Wars Blog 2011.