Emoji a day keeps the blues away

An emoji flag adorns Ignacio’s Main St. hoping to brighten up the thoroughfare on a rainy winter day.
Trennie Collins | The Southern Ute Drum

Lately, if you’ve taken a drive down the main street in downtown Ignacio, known as Goddard Avenue, it’s hard to miss the little burst of positive inspiration that adorn the street lights.

Kaye Washington, a ninth-grader at Ignacio High School, is the reasonfor all the emoji fun.

With the help of Dancing Spirit Community Arts Center and Executive Director, Kasey Correia, Washington was able to let her imagination run wild. After taking a stroll downtown Ignacio and observing the quiet beauty, Correia gave some great words of advice.

“You have an opportunity to make a statement to the public,” Correia told Washington. “What would you want to say?”

Since 2014 Dancing Spirit Community Art Center, a local non-profit, has been doing the beautification for downtown Ignacio. When brackets were installed for the 100th anniversary of the San Ignacio Fiesta, Correia along with Dancing Spirit cohorts, knew this was something they could have fun with.

Washington, thinking the flag idea was really cool, started working on them in early February. Washington had a few extra helping hands to finish the project up because school obligations were calling.

Making others happy was key for Washington. The project was aimed to make the community smile, whether they were having a good day or bad day, walking or driving down Goddard Ave.

“I wanted people to have their day lightened a little bit if they were having a bad day. If they were having a good day, then that makes it even better,” Washington said.

Washington’s emoji and positive affirmation idea follow some other youth programs in this community such as: Dancing Spirit Summer Art Program, the After-School Arts Program and the Boys and Girls Club of the Southern Ute Indian Tribe.

“She picked the idea and she ran with it,” Correia said. “It was just magical with her, she did her research.”

Positive thinking is not a concept everyone believes and follows, but according to studies, the effects of positive thinking have many health benefits when it comes to your overall well-being. Some of which are: increased life span, lower rates of depression, lower levels of distress, greater resistance to the common cold and better psychological and physical well-being.

“I really got inspired by my aunt, because she told me that it was really cool,” Washington said. “I was really inspired by her and I want to thank my aunt for that.”

 

 

 

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