Havaianas enlists clean-up group for Thong Challenge

Havaianas enlists clean-up group for Thong Challenge
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Havaianas has enlisted a Bondi-based clean-up crew to comb the beach following the annual Thong Challenge tomorrow.

Earlier this month B&T revealed brands were gaining a bad reputation around the iconic beach with a group called Responsible Runners constantly clearing up debris left after large-scale activations.

The brand has moved to cut-short any bad publicity off the back of the event, now in its eighth year, which has become an Australia Day staple for many.

Trash generated includes the giant inflatable thongs used by the participants to create the giant floating rafts, with the aim of the Challenge to get as many people on the water as possible.

It is run at five locations, North Bondi, Cottelsoe, Mooloolaba, Glenelg and Torquay main beach by experiential agency Urban, and last year saw more than 7,000 people taking part.

A Havaianas spokesman said: “Our original brief to Urban was to create an Australia Day tradition and promote its association with Havaianas.

“The event’s year on year growth is testament to our success. The Havaianas Thong Challenge has really transcended our original objectives to become a significant part of Australia Day festivities around the country.”

Urban co-founder Ryan McDonough, claimed the Thong Challenge has become Australia’s most “successful and enduring” experiential campaign.

He added: “There are not many people you meet who do not know about it, or know someone who has participated in it, which is a powerful litmus test for any experiential marketing campaign.

“In addition, our success developing in-land ‘backyard’ Thong Challenges in 2012 is further testament to the growth potential of the event.”

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