What makes the Hearts on the Bridge so special?
To begin with, they are hearts. Hearts are a universal symbol for love; whether it be romantic love (how it is used most often), familial love, a loving friendship or just a love for something, like a city. 😉
Because of this symbolism, hearts often evoke loving, warm and/or tender feelings within us causing our bodies and minds to rush with endorphins and feel good. You can see examples of this in comments on the Hearts on the Bridge Facebook posts, like the one referring to the heart project by saying it “puts a smile and warm feeling in my heart”.
Hearts are not only universal but cross personal human barriers such as age, gender and social status. It is not uncommon for myself or Kevin Rookey, who created the hearts, to have had different people in the same day say something like “Each evening my daughter tugs on my pant leg asking to go see what color the hearts are tonight” and “The hearts really touch my dad. He asked me to pick him up at his adult home to bring him into town to see the hearts”.
Granted, the fact that they are hearts doesn’t woo everyone. This is where illumination and animation steps in. The hearts are wrapped in LED strip lights. These strips are controlled by a remote. The remote allows for the hearts to light with the ability to change colors of the lights and the reactions.
For instance, the hearts can be one of various solid colors, a seven color combination, a number of three-color combinations or a choice of a few two-color monochromatic combinations like blue-purple and red-pink. They can also flash, blink, chase and make various other movements.
Even though we update the LED strip lights each year, allowing for the ability of the hearts to be brighter and have more color choices, there was nothing like the reactions of people the first year when they realized that the hearts could, not only be lit the typical red but, be a color combination and that the colors could be animated. It was fun to hear feedback like “I thought the hearts were nice when they were lit up red but when they became color-changing, then they were cool!”
Thank you for celebrating three years of having the Hearts on the Bridge! Look forward to them again in February 2019! ❤️