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The 2008 FLOAT Convention

Grab the Brass Ring
Grab the Brass Ring

2008 was known by some as the first year of FLOAT, while others knew it as the Year of Melissa Gjergji (now Vinson). First, Melissa took top honors in the Large Sculpture Competition with her stunning carousel horse...

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40 is the new 30….
40 is the new 30….

…then Melissa followed that up by taking First Place in the Entrance Decor Competition, following the "Happy 40th Birthday" theme….

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Oh, Christmas Tree...
Oh, Christmas Tree...

…and finally, Melissa ended the convention sweeping the competitions, also taking First Place in the Table Centerpiece event. To date, no one has ever matched this achievement in FLOAT's history.

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FLOATing Molecules
FLOATing Molecules

At the 2008 inaugural kick-off event, the theme for the convention was "Discover FLOAT". So as Opening Night ended, the attendees were showered upon by a balloon drop. But we didn't want just any old boring drop, so balloon molecules, keeping with the "discover / science" theme of the night, rained down instead!

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Lighting the Night
Lighting the Night

Hands-on construction for the Final Night celebration spread out into the front lobby. FLOAT is filled with opportunities for people to learn by doing.

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Give Us a Smile!
Give Us a Smile!

While working on the Large Sculpture competition, team members decided on a moment of levity! Here, Melissa Rauser, CBA, stands with a donkey sculpture that had to have a "leaker" replaced. Can you guess which one it was?

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Channeling Jerry Lewis
Channeling Jerry Lewis

FLOAT's resident entertainer, Carl Woody, cracks a joke during the Opening Night event. In following the science theme, several crew members appeared in lab coats during the introductions.

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Put Your Back Into It!
Put Your Back Into It!

Who said working with balloons was easy? Here, Melissa Vinson uses whatever tools she can to create the framework of her award winning design.

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A Rich Tapestry
A Rich Tapestry

Tristen Burkholder works long and hard helping to weave both non-rounds and Link-O-Loons together to help create what will be a dramatic stained glass window….

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The Finished Product
The Finished Product

….and here is how it turned out! The Final Night Decor, designed by the Betallic team of Guido Verhoef, CBA, Bidou and Jan Iiams, CBA, is still one of the finest examples of elegant decor in FLOAT's history.

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BIG Pimpin'
BIG Pimpin'

It's about making FLOAT your own! Peggy Williams, CBA, decided to put on her own "Ladies Night" at FLOAT, so the lovely ladies of the convention got together and had whimsical fun with balloons. They did, however, allow FLOAT crew member Jason Vaughn in on the silliness.

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Magic Doesn't Just Happen
Magic Doesn't Just Happen

It takes a lot of hard work and talent to create what you see at FLOAT. Here the design team works with FLOAT volunteers to rig the roof on the entrance decor for the Final Night party.

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