Rootzoo Celebrates Its First Birthday

By: Marcus Robbins

On June 2nd, 2007, exactly a year ago to this day, RootZoo as you know it today was born. The official version of the site launched on a Saturday afternoon. RootZoo's beta community was about 300 members, and included mostly friends of ours (and friends of theirs), but there were a few RootZooers you may very well know today who were a part of the site from the very start. Members like Pennywise, Showstoppa, EC4EVER, and a few other true originals helped to pave the way for the site's growth. As I'm sure you can imagine, this concept only works when there are other people here to respond to your threads, vote in your polls, vote in your RootOffs, and more. These originals were brave enough to believe in us from the start, and endured the days where the site's most active threads had just 6 replies!

Thanks to a new generation of RootZooers that quickly joined after the site's launch (allsportsplaya1, dugoutstories, Po, wpm5587, 50 CENT, wiZo, Flyinghammerlock, and a big handful of others - sorry if I left you out), activity picked up pretty quickly and those 6 post threads soon turned into 20, 30, and more.

A year ago to this day, RootZoo was nothing more than a threads section (with roots and boos), profile pages, and a point system. That was it. Weeks later, articles were born and a new breed of sportswriter came to life. There were some great articles that filled the site and nearly a full year's worth of articles has brought forth some of the best sportswriting on the internet. Period. Polls shortly followed articles, and a great way to learn about the opinions of other sports fans emerged - not to mention an easy way to earn points! Over the months that followed, Pick 'Em, User Stats, the RootZoo Store, RootOffs, Groups, Fantasy News (now FantasyZone), the Daily Challenge, Videos, and more were launched, giving all of us more ways to feed our sports addictions.

The next year will bring us many continued improvements and additions to the site. Among those are the trivia section (coming very soon), fantasy leagues, and a whole bunch of other surprises that you'll see over the coming weeks and months. Remember, we're just a one year old and we're still in diapers. There's a long way to go. We'll never stop trying to make this place better for you and it's our #1 priority every day.

For all the features we've brought here, it's not the features that make RootZoo what it is today - it's you, the people. You've filled this site with insight, humor, and so much life that you are all what makes RootZoo the destination it's become for so many of you, and I'd like to thank you for all being here. Your presence couldn't mean more to us and we consider ourselves privileged to enjoy the company of so many great people every day.

It's been a great year, and you've all helped to create so many memories looking back to the site's beginnings.?

There was the monthlong points battle between eagles15200 and showstoppa over the first to living legend, as both wanted to win the 50-inch plasma TV for being the first to get there. If you were around at the time, you'd remember that the race was truly neck and neck to the finish. As it turned out, both members agreed on a compromise shortly before 20,000 points were reached and both accepted 42-inch plasmas in place of the 50.?

Then there was the ryanphar23 era, as he ruled the leaderboard for a few months, but the end of the Minnesota Twins' season and the beginning of football season opened up the door to Saints 4 Life, who's sat atop the leaderboard for months now and continues to grow his lead!

There was the site outage Labor Day weekend that left many of you wondering what happened to RootZoo. After three straight sleepless nights, the site finally came back to life early Monday morning. I plan to spend my next Labor Day weekend just a little differently.

There were the pick 'em contests. HoustonTexansPride outpicked the rest of RootZoo during the 2007 NFL season and won a free trip to an unforgettable Super Bowl as a result...not to mention a TV interview and some newspaper articles. swamisee99pct won himself a 50-inch plasma TV for outpicking the rest of RootZoo during the 2007 regular season portion of the NBA. Mack The Finger will be going to LA to see games 3 and 4 of the NBA finals, as he had the best NBA pick 'em record from January 1st through the end of the regular season. Someone (to be announced very soon) will be going to the MLB All-Star game at Yankee Stadium this summer. While no one's yet one the Daily Challenge, people have come just a couple questions away quite a few times, and someone will win him or herself a plasma TV soon enough. AGENTZER00, Cactus Climber, and KoufaxSpahn have dominated the pick 'em section, winning game consoles, ticket gift certificates, RootZoo apparel (more than they know what to do with by now!) and more. Many of the rest of you have won the same through all kinds of contests held over the course of the last year.

A year ago to this day, there were just above 300 registered members at RootZoo and a working staff of four. As this day nears its end, we'll pass the 26,000 mark (and ten people working behind the scenes - even more if you count our moderators, who've all done an EXCELLENT job at keeping things in order here and I thank you for this) and I look forward to welcoming an entire new class of RootZooers in over the course of the next year. They'll find their ways around the site like you first did, experience the thrill of their first thread response alerts, first roots, first RootOff wins, and more, and they'll eventually experience the frustration (depending on how they take it) of their first boo! If the next year brings us the caliber sports fan that the first year has brought, we'll have everything we could have ever wished for with RootZoo and then some.

It's an exciting time to be a sports fan. Thank you for making it a great year and happy birthday to us all. May the next year bring us all more great times as we continue our march forward.

Jesse Boskoff
Founder / RootZoo.com

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