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Parranda.org Opens the Doors to a "Virtual Puerto Rico"

Non-Profit Aims to Map a Greater Puerto Rico by Leveraging an Online/Offline Global Community

SAN JUAN, PR and MIAMI, FL and SILICON VALLEY, CA -- (Marketwire) -- 12/31/12 -- A new online/offline community opened its virtual doors this morning with an invitation to all Puerto Ricans to help remap "The Greater Puerto Rico."

Parranda.org -- which takes its name from the popular Puerto Rican Winter holiday pastime -- aims to "remap, remake, and remobilize the Greater Puerto Rico" through a series of coordinated efforts involving both people on the island and people in the Puerto Rican diaspora (i.e., people who have moved to the mainland US and other countries). The first focus for Parranda.org is a global project where the community will draw an interactive map of where Puerto Ricans live today. A first look at this map will be published in January.

The network -- in an early beta version -- will enable people today to register, enter geographical data for the mapping project, and invite others to join the project via a "virtual parranda." With traditional parrandas, holiday revelers go door-to-door throughout their neighborhoods, gathering people to join them, knock on other doors, and gather more people.

"In our experience, the best way to build a movement is enable people to invite others," said San Juan-based Marcos Polanco, co-founder of Parranda.org. "But instead of knocking on physical doors, the members of Parranda will knock on virtual doors, because the people of the Greater Puerto Rico live everywhere."

Parranda Also Launches Contest and Summit

Beyond the mapping project, Parranda.org hopes to develop strategic programs in mentoring, entrepreneurship, and crowd funding for businesses that promise to positively impact the island economy. To jumpstart these efforts, the organization will launch a series of offline meetups beginning with a summit in San Juan, tentatively scheduled for May 2013. Parranda.org will be working with charitable and corporate sponsors to fly Parranda members from the US to Puerto Rico for the May summit and island members to events in the US.

"To grow Parranda, we will need the community to help us recruit others," said Silicon Valley-based Giovanni Rodriguez, co-Founder of Parranda.org. "The works starts this week during our virtual parranda, but it will continue well through the Winter and early Spring. We hope to reward emerging leaders in our movement by making it easier for them to travel throughout the Greater Puerto Rico."

About Parranda.org
Parranda.org is a project devoted to the economic, civic, and cultural development of a "Greater Puerto Rico." By providing a virtual platform for mass collaboration, Parranda enables people on and off the island (the Puerto Rican diaspora) to work with one another on meaningful and measurable initiatives. We're launching just before Christmas this year. To sign up for early registration, or to explore ways to support the project, please visit us at www.parranda.org. You can also join the "parranda" on our social networks on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ParrandaPuertoRico and on Twitter @ParrandaPR.

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