Newest kindness meters will help keep Carlsbad sign’s lights on

Newest kindness meters will help keep Carlsbad sign’s lights on
Carlton Lund, left, with Laguna Beach artist Christian Drake, will be installing two new kindness meters on Carlsbad Boulevard Friday. The funds collected in one of the meters will go to keeping the lights for the Carlsbad archway sign on. Courtesy photo

CARLSBAD — The city will always be on.

A pair of Kindness Meters will be installed Friday at the Carlsbad sign on Carlsbad Boulevard, one of which will permanently light the arch.

The brain trusts of Realtor Carlton Lund, and the city’s unofficial Chief Kindness Officer, is bringing the sign and meters to the city and Friday’s event at 6:45 p.m. It will also feature a ceremony, music, dancing and the artwork of Wyland.

The gathering is not sponsored by the city, but a special event permit was issued. Most of it will take place at Village Faire, while Carlsbad Boulevard between Grand Avenue and Carlsbad Village Drive will be closed from 7 to 7:45 p.m., according to city staff.

Traffic safety officers, however, will be on duty to direct vehicles.

“I wanted the meters in the first place … as a charitable thing,” Lund said. “Just make kindness a regular habit. The whole purpose is to generate kindness.”

The meters will be place on either side of the sign, although one of the meters will continue to raise funds for Carlsbad and North County charities and community projects.

Lund brought the idea of a sign to the city 16 years ago and it was christened in 2014. He also figured the sign should remain lit and championed for a meter dedicated to fully funding the cost.

He said it costs 15 cents per hour to light, although the city currently pays for the lighting.

“I went through the whole administrative process,” Lund explained. “I wanted to make sure people could dance on the street.”

Perhaps more importantly to Lund, however, is the act of kindness. He supports charities, is a member of the Carlsbad Charitable Foundation and said the act of kindness, and teaching it to children, is the true goal of the meters.

“Getting the kids about learning to give back is the most exciting part,” Lund added. “A quarter to a child is like a $1,000 to a businessman.”

As for Friday, a portion of Carlsbad Boulevard and Carlsbad Village Drive will be closed to traffic. The event is expected to run about an hour, although Lund said people will filter to nearby establishments to continue the celebration.

He also secured the Backwater Blues Band and a rendering of Wyland’s image of the world’s largest American flag.

Keeping with the flag theme, Lund said a pair of Old Glory’s will be raised on either side of the sign on Veterans Day Nov. 1.

Yet another goal, he added, is to bring in car shows. Lund said he’s always wanted a classic Woodie car.

“I’d love to do a car show,” he added. “You’ve got to have some skin in the game. The end result is the ripple effect of kindness.”

Including the CCF, other charities and organizations receiving funds from the newest meters will be the Agua Hedionda Lagoon Foundation, Carlsbad Educational Foundation, Carlsbad Boys & Girls Club, Moonlight Amphitheater and the Wyland Foundation.

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