By David Wade

MELROSE (CBS) – On a drizzly, dreary day, an attempt to add some light and warmth. Wednesday was Kindness Day in Melrose. People and businesses all over the city took a moment to practice random acts of kindness.

This is the fourth time the city has celebrated kindness, and it’s spreading. People brought goodies to a retirement home, and handed out coffee on the street, as people in Melrose paid it forward.

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“We’ve had people do things like put quarters in the laundromat, we’ve had people go into the library and hug a librarian,” said Maribeth Darwin who got the idea four years ago as a concrete way for people to put the “I” in kindness. “We just think it’s good to take a break and celebrate what we have in common, and we always have kindness in common,” she said.

Robin Peevey delivers treats to Cochrane House residents on Kindness Day in Melrose (WBZ-TV)

That’s what the owners of Buckalew’s General Store did by sharing treats with residents at the Cochrane House. “The more that you can do and realize that there’s lots of people out there who could use a smile, it makes all the difference in the world,” said Robin Peevey, from the general store.

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“My mother always said, do one kind thing every day. just one,” added Cochrane House resident Rose Costa.

Melrose Bank picked up the parking tab for about 200 spots in the city’s Commuter Rail lots. “Hopefully people out here at 5 o’clock in the morning, 6 o’clock in the morning, jumping on the Commuter Rail had a nice surprise this morning,” said Jim Oosterman, from Melrose Bank.


And just down the street Julie Nolan gave out coffee and hugs. “It’s changed my whole day. Yeah, it’s miserable out here, but I’m having a blast,” she said.

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“The coolest thing is how many other communities have reached out to us saying, ‘hey we’d like to do this in our community, too.’ So we’re hoping that it spreads beyond Melrose,” said Maribeth Darwin.

David Wade