These YouTube gems capture local personality, talents, news, views and events (along with some pretty sweet dance moves).
Although the videos were filmed locally, they’ve reached audiences far and wide.
TITLE: Walk it out contest
VIEWS: 5,263,225 and counting
UPLOADED: By Mitch Dorsey (Nov. 14, 2006)
THE VIDEO: The audience picks its favorite in a dance contest at Paine College.
THE BACKSTORY: The debut single of rapper Unk provides us with an instant flashback to 2006.
The contest took place during Paine Fest, an annual event celebrating the Paine College community.
TRAFFIC VS. TRAIN
TITLE: CLOSE CALL! NS 156 Street Running down 6th Street!
VIEWS: 3,218,648 and counting
UPLOADED: By Anthony Davis (Sept. 24, 2009)
THE VIDEO: Traffic darts across Sixth Street in front of an oncoming train.
THE BACKSTORY: Davis, a 21-year-old train enthusiast, shot many videos of trains while living in Augusta. The Greenbrier High School graduate now lives in Greenwood, S.C. – and works as a conductor – but said one video stood out.
“There was a big problem with cars running the tracks in front of trains,” he said.
Davis set his camera up on Riverwalk Augusta and shot vehicles narrowly dodging a train, NS 156, as it was leaving Augusta.
“A lot of people think it’s fake,” he said. “It was a complete shock when the video took off. My e-mail blew up. I still get at least five comments a day.”
TITLE: 9 year old kick boxing beast!
VIEWS: 394,259 and counting
UPLOADED: By Mark G (April 29, 2011)
THE VIDEO: A student of Greubel’s Children’s Mixed Martial Arts shows his best kickboxing moves.
THE BACKSTORY: The local training center teaches everything from jiu-jitsu to boxing to mixed martial arts from its facilities on Riverwest Drive in Augusta.
TITLE: Dinosaur Jr – Over It
UPLOADED: By Dinosaurjnr (June 8, 2009)
THE VIDEO: The official video for Over It, from the album Farm by Dinosaur Jr.
THE BACKSTORY: In 2009, the touring rock band shot professional BMX and skateboard riders along the riverwalk and Ellis Street in Augusta.
JEWISH NEW YEAR
TITLE: Because It’s Rosh Hashanah!
VIEWS: 160,022 and counting
UPLOADED: By Rabbi Davis Sirull (Aug. 23, 2012)
THE VIDEO: An original Jewish New Year greeting recorded and sung by the rabbi of Adas Yeshurun Synagogue in Augusta.
THE BACKSTORY: “It’s a part of our tradition to send out Jewish New Year cards. People just don’t do it anymore because of Facebook and e-mail,” said Sirull, who also sings at local events and has released two CDs.
Sirull’s kids and members of his congregation appear in the video, produced by Bryton Entertainment in North Augusta.
After being featured on the news in Israel, “The Rosh Hashanah video got into more homes and countries than we ever thought it was.”
The rabbi reports that a new, original video is on its way for Passover 2013.
A SHORT LEASH
TITLE: Mrs. Bojangles’ Goes on Her First Walk
VIEWS: 464,382 and counting
UPLOADED: By Nikki Daniel (Dec. 23, 2006)
THE VIDEO: Mrs. Bojangles, an 8-week-old basset hound, struggles with her leash and harness.
THE BACKSTORY: Daniel’s video sat quietly on YouTube for years, until about three or four months ago.
“I had it set up so comments were e-mailed to me. I was like, ‘What is going on? Why are people looking at this 6-year-old video?’ ”
It turned out that a radio station in Winnipeg, Canada, mentioned it on air. It was shared on Reddit next, then Yahoo! Japan. Last week, most of the viewers were in Estonia (No. 1), the U.S. (No. 2) and Japan (No. 3).
And as for Mrs. Bojangles?
She eventually got the hang of her leash, but, “We don’t actually have the dog anymore,” Daniel said.