Hula-hoop dreams

class=img_thumbleft>Young participants in this Saturday's hula-hoop contest at the Juneteenth Festival in Theodore Wirth Park might be unaware that Saturday, July 7 is World Hoop Day. Twirling hoops around your body is nothing new, of course: The practice predates Wham-O's introduction of the plastic hula-hoop in 1958 by thousands of years. But full-body hooping as an adult pastime has only recently enjoyed a vogue among urban grown-ups. Last week, a dozen or so adult hoopsters gathered at Celebration Hall in Minneapolis to hoop under black lights, with a DJ spinning music.

"Kids grow out of it because it's mostly waist-hooping and neck-hooping," says Jessica Reiter, who helped organize the event, and has taught hooping in Minneapolis for the past year. "With a plastic hoop, it can be repetitive. But we make our own hoops—heavier and larger, so they're nice and big and slow." She says the new hooping is a mix between a massage, dance, and circus acrobatics. (Call it hoop hop.) Anyone interested in joining the emerging hoopoisie should visit Reiter's website at, or