How did you first get the idea to start your company We Sell Hoops?
I lived in NYC for 10 years and was turned on to hula hooping in 2002 at a music festival in Queens. My friends and I began ‘hooping’ regularly in Central Park by making our own hoops and experimenting with different sizes and circus like tricks.
That’s when hooping began to grow; that’s when it was developing into a niche culture, popping up in urban settings across the US. It was a hobbie for me, a creative outlet.
I was always researching new material for fabricating more creative ways to design hoops and as my designs developed I began to receive requests for custom orders from friends and family.
When I returned to Milford in 2009, hooping was unknown to Southern CT and suddenly everyone was interested and wanted one. I then started vending at local fairs, teaching hoopdance through community venues, and entertaining at children’s parties in my free time.
You are the official hula hoop vendor of Gathering of the Vibes. What's that experience been like?
We are coming up on our fourth year as part of the Vibes family and it’s been a wonderful opportunity and experience to meet so many fun people and work in such a happy environment.
My staff and I have made lasting friendships with neighboring sponsors and vendors and we look forward throughout the year.
What are some of your favorite types of hula hoops?
As people progress in their hoopdance ‘flow’ their hoop size will progress as well, therefore; it is necessary toswitch to a smaller, lighter weight hoop to move faster. It’s all physics, basically: the larger and heavier the hoopis, the easier it is to keep up, which works very well if you are interested in a slow groove.
If you are looking for aserious workout and want to burn more calories, your hoop should be smaller and lighter to increase the challenge. Personally, I prefer mini hoops, as I love to move fast and manipulate the hoops with my hands, which is called ‘offbody’ hooping. And of course, it must have color coordinated sparkly bling! Lately I have been into watching Native American Hoopdancers as they can manipulate several hoops in a mesmerizing way.
What can people expect if they come out to these two events?
"Hoop Love Revolve & Evolve Hoop Jam" is a local meet-up for adult hoopdancers to practice and socialize and learnpointers from each other. We will have demo hoops to try and hoops to buy as well. The music will be different each time each and we are lining up DJ’s for future events.
Hoop Heroes Children’s Hula Hoop Workshop is a two-hour event on April 7 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., to teach children fun hoop techniques to express individuality, bonding games to encourage team building, and performance exercises to increase self-confidence. Hooping is a great way to keep children physically active while playing alone or with their peers.
Large hoops, mini hoops, and fun music will be provided during the workshop and parents can drop their kids off and go shopping at the Mall nearby!