Join Hacktoberfest 2023: Celebrate Open Source with Us!

Are you ready for the annual extravaganza of open source collaboration? Hacktoberfest 2023 is almost here, and we’re excited to share that Esri will be taking part in the month-long celebration of open source projects. We have a range of opportunities available to developers of all skill levels to get involved. To find out how you can join in on the fun, read on for more details! And if you happened to miss it, be sure to watch our Hacktoberfest livestream recording for additional insights.

Why Esri is participating

Starting in 2013, Esri began publishing repositories like Esri Leaflet and Terraformer. In fact, Esri Leaflet is one of the top Leaflet plugins based on Github stars. Since then, our commitment to open source has continued to grow, especially with the release of ArcGIS Platform a couple of years ago. Our commitment to open source is evident through our developer demonstrations and comprehensive documentation. We offer a wide range of open source integration options, including support for popular libraries like Leaflet, MapLibre GL JS, OpenLayers, and CesiumJS.

Esri’s Open Vision Initiative, established in 2015, exemplifies our dedication to maintaining ArcGIS as an open and interoperable system. This commitment encompasses our support for open source technologies, open specifications, open standards, and open data. Throughout recent years, we have initiated numerous open source projects, actively participated in third-party endeavors, and integrated open source solutions into many of our product offerings.

While we consistently encourage contributions to open source projects, our involvement in Hacktoberfest signifies a heightened commitment. Throughout the entire month of October, we’re here to assist newcomers as they take their first steps into open source project contributions and to offer additional support to seasoned contributors.

Participation benefits for contributors

Contributing to open source repos can have several benefits including (click ▼ to expand):

▼ Skill development: …
To contribute you will likely need to study and understand the inner workings of the code, which may help you improve your technical skills (e.g. debugging, design patterns, etc.). It may also provide you with the opportunity to acquire new skills, such as testing, learning new programming languages, exploring frameworks, and using tools like Git, all while gaining practical experience through contributions to open-source projects and real-world projects.
▼ Collaboration and networking: …
The opportunity to connect with like-minded individuals, share ideas, and build professional relationships within Esri and the broader open-source community will help you expand your network. Additionally, Esri will provide additional support throughout the entire month of October.
▼ Satisfaction and reciprocity: …
If you choose to solve a bug that someone else has found, you will not only help them overcome the difficulty, but it will also bring a sense of satisfaction to you. Moreover, it can aid in your own learning journey and expand your network. Furthermore, you may also find that when you need assistance, there are more developers willing to help you.
▼ Learning from others: …
An opportunity to learn from experienced developers is provided. You can learn from their code reviews, study their code, review their contributions, and gain insights into best practices and coding standards, which will improve your coding skills.
▼ Building a portfolio: …
Contributing to open source projects allows you to showcase your work and build a strong portfolio. This can be valuable when applying for jobs, seeking career advancement within Esri, or pursuing freelance opportunities.
▼ Recognition and reputation: …
It can help you establish a positive reputation and gain recognition for your contributions. We will highlight and acknowledge all contributors post-event on our website to show our appreciation. This can lead to increased visibility within the company and potential career opportunities.
▼ Rewards: …
By making valid contributions to one of the listed repos, you will be entered into the Esri contest, giving you the chance to win registration to the Esri Developer Summit. Additionally, you can register to receive the general Hacktoberfest rewards from Digital Ocean.
▼ Influence and impact: …
Working on enhancements also provides you with the opportunity to influence the direction and development of the software. Your contributions can help shape the features, functionality, and quality of the projects, making a meaningful impact on the technology that many more developers use.


How to participate

Participating in Esri’s Hacktoberfest event is straightforward. If you plan to participate, please join our Slack channel. While we encourage participants to ask questions related to specific issues in the repositories themselves, the Slack channel will be an additional way for you to get help and support from Esri employees and other contributors, as well as engage with other community members.

Next, select a repository from the Hacktoberfest designated list below. Within these repositories, you’ll find issues to contribute to labeled with “good first issue” or “help wanted”. Determine which issue you would like to work on and be sure to adhere to all our general open source guidelines and code of conduct before submitting a pull request.

Should there be any Esri premium services that you need to utilize when completing an issue, please contact us via Slack or email. We can provide a voucher for any valid requests, in this case.

Esri GitHub Page

Designated Hacktoberfest repositories list


Valid contributions include:

Prize and points

To incentivize participation, we will be giving away one free registration to the Esri Developer Summit in either Berlin, Germany, or Palm Springs, CA (winner’s choice). The participant who receives the most points from their valid contributions will be awarded this registration.

The points allocated for each valid contribution type are as follows:

An issue must have either the label “good first issue” or “help wanted” to be considered a part of the contest. If an issue has both “good first issue” and “help wanted”, then it is considered a “good first issue” issue and will be worth just 10 points. For more detailed information, please carefully read through all of the contest rules.


We’re looking forward to participating in Hacktoberfest this year, and we hope that your own curiosity, along with the incentives offered by both the official Hacktoberfest presenters and us, will be the perfect excuse for you to participate this year. There are opportunities for individuals regardless of skill level. Reminder – if you have any immediate inquiries or feedback, join our Slack channel or send us an email.

About the authors

Courtney Yatteau is a developer advocate on the Developer Experience team. She is responsible for outreach and awareness related to Esri's developer SDKs and APIs. Before Esri, Courtney worked in the secondary education field, teaching computer science and mathematics.


Developer on the Developer Experience (DX) team, looking for ways to improve the DX through better educational resources, developer tools, and community support among other things.

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