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Digital version of Polaroids rev up lacrosse site

SportsEngine HQ Website Builder Illustration

Lake Tahoe Summit Classic uses Instagram widget to dress up homepage.

Lake Tahoe's ice blue waters -- surrounded by towering pines and snowcapped mountains -- scream, "photo op!"

And the Lake Tahoe Summit Classic site is a reflection of the area's jaw-dropping beauty. A variety of photos dominate the site's homepage, including a slideshow about halfway down the page (as indicated by the huge red arrow to the right). What is that, you say?

Those photos are from Instagram, and the slideshow was created using a handy, dandy free widget maker from Instagram called SnapWidget. Widgets can be created based on your Instagram username or you can pull photos from a specific hashtag. 

Instagram is a sort of modern day version of Polaroids -- snap your photo and then, seconds later, share it with your friends. But instead of the old days of waiting for those those gooey, glossy paper photos to reveal an image, we just point, click and share. Pictures from your Instagram account can be funneled to most any other social media account. Even better, by using Snapwidget, you can have those same photos load almost instantly to wherever you want on your website. Set the widgets up in advance and there's no need to even touch your site when the big day or weekend arrives. Just let the photos stream in. Perfect for a huge event like the Lake Tahoe Summit Classic.

We had to give this a try, so we created a Sport Ngin User Group account on Instagram, loaded some photos and headed on over to SnapWidget.

It works! We created a widget using the #SNUGMinneapolis hashtag and dropped the code on this page (below).


Instagram's SnapWidget plays nicely with the Sport Ngin platform

Here's how it works:

1. Go to SnapWidget and decide if you want all the photos from your Instagram account to appear in the slideshow or if you only want photos with a specific hashtag.

2. Choose your widget type. I used the scrolling option, and enabled Auto Start Scrolling.

3. Choose the size. This can be a bit tricky, and I had to play around with different widths and heights to get the look I wanted.

4. Get your widget code, then embed it using Sport Ngin's Add Page Element option. Pick the "Code" option and then drop in your code.

5. Don't be alarmed if you see the "Code errors found ..." message in red. Just check the Override Code Error box and you are good to go.

If you have any questions or need help getting your SnapWidget loaded on your SportsEngine site, contact [email protected]