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Building a community (a bit different from here)

Hallo my name is Kati and you might have read my thread “What's cooking?” where you learned that I loooove food, and to take pics of my food and share it on social media.

This blog is about my hobby – and building a community around my hobby. Communities have been forming, evolving and dying consistently since the beginning of humanity. Building community is part of being human. Sharing is caring – how it all begun with “My” private community: my “foodie-hobby” motivated me to found a Facebook group 3 years ago called “Pfälzer Wein, Kultur und Kulinarik” translated “Palatinate Wine, Culture, and Culinary” short “WoiKuKu”.

Picture: me be in the wine cellar, tasting and analyzing the wine // The palatinate Wine Queens // Screenshot of the WoiKuKu tribe

This group was exploding within days, many people requested to join this “private” group, after weeks we already had thousand members. Likeminded people who wanted to share tipps and tricks related to the group’s topic, winery owner, restaurants, artists. We call ourselves the “WoiKuKus”.

Suddenly I became interesting for newspaper (example article 1, article 2) regional tourism industry, and producers. I am now considered as a kind of food-blogger and became a little bit famous in my area. Meanwhile we have over 6 thousand group members from all around the world. The tenure in this group is really friendly. People can ask a question like “where can I get the best Chardonnay in Palatinate”, “What restaurant is open to bring my dogs”, “What’s going on this weekend in our region” or “What’s cooking?” aka “I have no idea what I should cook for Dinner – HELP”. A community was born! Some people do live abroad and are just homesick and enjoying the pictures of regional food. So we have for example someone who is currently in the winter maintenance crew of the Neumayer Research Station in Antarctica. Other members emigrated to US and are missing the palatinate sausage and German bread - If they see some traditional German dishes in our group, it always triggers memories of family meals and good times at home because there’s a level of nostalgia attached.

While we were talking about recommendations, cool places, wineries etc. the group members requested to meet – and so we started with “user meetings”, always staying with the red-thread. We have organized for example wine tastings, events where I invite the hunter association to do an information session about how to BBQ regional game, meet the regional goat cheese production, cooking events, hiking and more! Real friendships were built! (And people who know me know what I am talking about)

And we all share our experiences, adventures and food pics! Hell, yes, we are proud of it!!!!

WoiKuKu and SAP

I met so many great people through my hobby and addiction! Here some cool examples:

It was so funny when I was at SAPPHIRE Orlando, and these guys recognized me on the show floor saying “hey, aren’t you Kati from WoiKuKu?”. Marcell Vollmer @Gerrit Weissenborn

Being at DKOM or other SAP events, and people asking for a selfie with me as she knows me from WoiKuKu. @Giovanna Enea - Love this!

Hosting since 4 years in a row SAP colleagues (and WoiKuKus) from SAP IT in Palatinate Martin Lang Oliver Gutzeit @lisa Noelle Brown Paul Aschmann

And a Special birthday video from SAP IT WoiKuKus to OpenSAP https://www.facebook.com/katarina.k.fischer/videos/10215760032379330/ and more https://www.facebook.com/katarina.k.fischer/posts/10215760036499433

And personal friendships (nice example @heike fiedler-Phelps

Well – we have many people from SAP and SAP Community in the group (raise hand please).

What’s your story?

As you see my hobby (food) is connecting. What is your connecting hobby? Did you also build a community around it? Why did you create a private community?

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4 Comments

  • Apr 15 at 07:19 AM

    Hi Kati!
    I've been lucky to meet four years ago a collegue (now former, sadly) who shared the same passion for boardgames and roleplay games who started with a couple of friends a little group named Games Wonders.

    I took my chance and joined them, resuming roleplaying and addicting my kids to boardgames too.

    There are a lot of different people there, from parents like me to youngster barely legal (i'm still shocked when a boy born in 2000 told us he has no "Image" about Twin Towers!), but all quite friendly and we are expanding on the territory, offering and proposing themed nights in collaboration with church or the towns' administration.

    What I really like about our group is the huge diversity and inclusivity we have: when you can be and play anything, none cares about who is rolling dice, just how the character influences the game.
    And the same is about boardgames: you are just another cute meeple or a StormTrooper.

    And this hobby turned out into going out hiking and plogging.

    I can say Internet offered me, during the years, to meet great communities, a lot of them: some lasted, some didn't, but every of them left me with something, even great friendships with people from all over the world, people I rarely meet (like the wonderful people here) or even never do it.

    I met people from Netherlands, Japan and Mexico, we speak almost daily without never see each other, but we think about each other like friends, always ready to offer a mocking joke as well as a shoulder to support and cry :)

  • Apr 16 at 09:29 AM

    Congrats on this blog, Kati. I knew that it would succeed. And it did! It is so great to see what you achieved with this group. Amazing! And I didn't know you are so famous! :-) Thanks very much for sharing.

    In regards to "my story" I think it is not so consistent like yours but sports e.g. was always consistent in my life. With my current job within the SAP Community I am more than happy to combine both: my work for SAP and my sports. At any SAP Inside Track around the world I am able to share my knowledge about sports as well as transmit the importance of body and mind in our daily businesses to the community. That makes me really happy: to combine passion with profession.

  • May 08 at 08:03 PM

    Well, as a member of the Belgian CoderDojo non-profit, I volunteer some of my free time to engage young kids (ages 7-14 yrs predominantly) to get interested in software programming ...

    Some of you will probably know this organization, others might be interested to know that it is a global community of people willing to promote the STEM fields for kids through free workshops. It's great to see these youngsters working with (visual) programming languages such as Snap or Scratch and progress from building simple Games to developing Apps or getting into Robotics. I could go on and on, on how great it is to see them make cool stuff, learning things and helping each other out, ...

    But on the topic of Community, I also gained new friends in my fellow volunteers over the years. We all have different walks of life, yet this one common goal can connect you to a lot of interesting people.

    Anyone that is interested to see if there's is a local CoderDojo out there to join as a volunteer or for your kids, check the link ...

    A second (more virtual) Community that I'm in to is the Untappd Community. This is an App for Beer-enthousiasts (and how could I not be as a Belgian???). Any Untappd-Users from the SAP-ecosystem that want to connect with me are welcome to do so ... Cheers!

  • Jul 11 at 07:31 PM

    I loved reading this about community.

    I used to live in a thriving (still is without me) group of people who loved and rode horses. We did everything from show together to go on rides in the forests. It was great! Sadly people move away. And some like me hang up their helmet and enjoy their retired hoses in the yard.

    I will say all of our neighbors banded together towards a solid purpose of keeping a "commercial" business from settling in here. It was amazing how much I had to learn about neighbors I had been living by for over 20 years. I found out we all had a great love of animals. Not surprising because of where we live. Most of us have acres + for yards. Maybe in 20 years we'll ban together again.

    I must admit I really miss my Horse riding group. We had a lot of fun.

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