Sick of what he says is a lack of “social connection” in the community, Oak Park resident Kevin Reid plans to start hugging random strangers next month.
Reid, a local guitar teacher, says he was inspired by the “Free Hugs Campaign,” a social movement started by an Australian man back in 2004.
On May 1 starting at noon, Reid will be stationed in Scoville Park, offering free hugs to any passersby, according to a press release. He picked that date because it is also “Global Love Day,” which is sponsored by the nonprofit The Love Foundation.
“I’ve always enjoyed hugging people when I meet them,” Reid said in the press release. “It reflects the love I have for others and my worldview that we are one global family. This issue of social disconnection on the streets has bothered me for years, and it’s getting worse with everyone plugged into their iPods and cellphones.”