In this day and age, people don’t seek news. Good news finds its way to people, oftentimes through their smart phones.
Recognizing this demand for news delivery, marketing and public relations firm Verdin developed SLO Happenings, a free mobile application that features events and activities in San Luis Obispo. Verdin designed the app in partnership with GFL Systems, Inc.
“Our goal was to create a unique, interactive way for people to find all the events San Luis Obispo has to offer in one easy-to-access place,” said Whitney Diaz, one of the creators of the application. “And we all use mobile devices and apps on a daily basis, so a mobile app just seemed like the perfect platform.”
The idea was to keep the app simple, vibrant and easy to use with a clean, friendly design, Diaz added.
The application was created as an evolution of the SLO Happenings brand, which started as a printed pamphlet and has been available online for the past two years.
“We set out to create a place where people could see what was happening in SLO,” said Lee Johnson, economic development manager for San Luis Obispo. “We ended up with a great app that allows people to see, search, share and submit events all from their mobile devices.”
SLO Happenings is funded by the Promotional Coordinating Committee of San Luis Obispo, and offers five categories of events and activities: Arts and Culture, Food and Wine, Social and Recreation, Ongoing Events and Happening This Week.
Each event submission is subject to approval. The application allows for sharing of events and images.
“The SLO events app is amazing,” Clint Pearce, chair of the Tourism Business Improvement District, said in a press release. “Its functional ease and beautiful design (are) a huge benefit for local events and people searching for them.”
English sophomore Frannie Wiese said she often learns what’s going on in the city through morning news on TV.
“I would download that (application) to make it easier … instead of watching the news in the morning about what’s going on,” she said.
However, Wiese also identified a challenge for the application creators.
“I think on paper (it) sounds like a good idea, but I don’t know if people would go out of their way to download it,” she said.
Civil engineering freshman Jovan Martinez said he finds out about events and activities in newspapers.
“I think I’d be a lot more interested in downloading it instead of walking around to the newspaper,” he said.
The app is available on the Apple App Store and Google Play, and downloadable at www.slocity.org/events.
“It has the potential to be a great tool,” said Jill LeMieux, chair of the Promotional Coordinating Committee. “And provide a valuable service to locals as well as visitors to San Luis Obispo County. The app is easy to use and available for Android and iOS mobile devices, including tablets. I am very excited about the possibilities.”