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Scott Vicker - Vick-tory Lap

Vicker: Spreading a positive message

Pictured is the "You are beautiful" mural painted on a wall in uptown Creston by Creston native Keith Smith. Smith works for the You Are Beautiful project in Chicago and painted the mural along North Maple Street in Creston to spread a positive message.
Pictured is the "You are beautiful" mural painted on a wall in uptown Creston by Creston native Keith Smith. Smith works for the You Are Beautiful project in Chicago and painted the mural along North Maple Street in Creston to spread a positive message.

An interesting development has happened in recent days.

When I first saw it, I didn’t think anything of it. When I walk along the sidewalk in front of the Creston News Advertiser office, I often see various items littered across the pavement – receipts, baseball cards, etc.

So when I first saw the painted green rock in front of our front door, I just assumed someone had dropped it.

But then the next day, I noticed it had a word painted on it. Of course, now the rock is missing in action and the past few days have been such a whirlwind that I cannot remember what the rock said.

Then, I saw on Facebook it wasn’t just random, but that several businesses in Creston had similar painted rocks placed in front of their doors.

The Reclaimed Wardrobe posted about a blue and green painted rock that says “Joy” that was left in front of its building.

Another painted rock that says “Be a friend” was placed on a bench in front of Quilts and Other Notions.

Cheryl Padgett-Keeler posted a photo on Facebook describing the goal of the rock project.

The photo says, “I am not ‘just a rock.’ I am what most people need. I am strong, I am bold and when painted I can really brighten the day. Paint a rock today, give it away, watch the joy spread. Who cares if you never see it again, you did your part, now let the rock do its part.”

Anyone interested in learning more about the project or participating can visit the Rocks of Creston Facebook page.

It’s a simple act of kindness spreading a positive message, and that’s what I like about it so much.

With so much hate permeating our world today, we need now more than ever for people to be spreading love and positive vibes.

So, to whoever started this project in Creston, I thank you. Keep up the good work.

You all might remember a few months ago when my good friend Keith Smith returned to Creston and painted the mural on the front wall of the Creston Municipal Pool.

While he was here, he also painted a large “You are beautiful” stencil on a blank wall along North Maple Street.

Keith works for the You Are Beautiful project in Chicago. I recently had the opportunity to go visit Keith for a night on my way to a concert in Milwaukee.

Before I left Chicago for Milwaukee, Keith handed me a stack of “You are beautiful” stickers and told me to spread the message.

I took those stickers with me to the concert with the intention of handing them out to the people around me. But, everyone was crammed into the concert venue so tight, I couldn’t reach into my pocket to take them out.

So while waiting in line for the merchandise table after the show, I decided I would hand them out as I walked back by the line.

After purchasing my new shirt, I took the stickers out of my pocket and walked back down the line, handing stickers to everyone and telling them to spread the message.

Even after they had just attended an entertaining and thrilling show, it was remarkable to see the reactions of those who I handed the stickers to.

I could see their faces instantly light up and the quizzical looks as I approached them to hand them something quickly turned to beaming smiles once they realized what the stickers said.

Several people looked down to read the stickers and then turned around to thank me. One person turned around and said, “Aww, thank you so much!” She then excitedly turned to the person next to her to show her the sticker.

It’s impossible to know what someone is going through on any given day, and so I’ve always believed it is important to be positive and kind.

Seeing people react to the “You are beautiful” stickers just reinforced that belief.

I would encourage everyone to take a lesson from the rocks, the stickers and the mural – find joy in your life, be a friend and remember you are beautiful.

•••

Contact the writer:

Twitter – @scottvicker

Emal – svicker@crestonnews.com

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