Strolling towards transformation one volunteer at a time

Stroll on State is quickly approaching this Saturday. Last weekend, I had the privilege of working next to 350 volunteers from Heartland Community Church who were committed to cleaning up and decorating downtown Rockford. These community-minded folks used their free time with only one thing in mind; making Rockford an even better place. Together.


With all the conversations of transforming Rockford and collaboration buzzing around the city, I feel compelled to chime in on something I witnessed.  I’m not sure when it hit me what was actually happening.  Maybe it was the freezing temperatures, possibly the big bright orange bags filled with leaves and liter, when it finally set in that this event is far more than fun and bright lights.


The moments that wouldn’t get any news coverage, the times people didn’t get credit for going above and beyond, those are the moments I observed and then realized that this city is already transforming, and I’m grateful that I get to be right in the midst of it.

Partnering closely with Heartland Community Church, I appreciated seeing the bonding between complete strangers, working together toward the common goal of improving our city one step at a time.  It’s evident that small deeds from a large group of people can truly get us on the right track to where we need to be.  And on this track to transformation, we may just realize we had the solution the entire time; it just took determined, selfless people willing to continually step up to make it happen.


So while the community gathers for Stroll on State this Saturday evening, we hope everyone enjoys the experience as much as our team at the Rockford Area Convention & Visitors Bureau has enjoyed creating it.  Also, keep in mind, that behind-the-scenes there are people working tirelessly for a better Rockford.  A better place to live, a better place to be and a better place to call home.

For specific information about this event visit www.StrollOnState.com, or the GoRockford Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube pages. The free event runs from 4 – 10 p.m. The stroll to the tree will begin at City Hall; line up at 5:30 p.m. and be part of a new holiday tradition.