Be More Kind Day

Sep 1, 2022

Edmonton’s Arcadia Brewing Co. is Looking for Help to Spread Kindness

While social media has the power to divide us, it can also bring about great ideas that have potential to bring us together. For Arcadia Brewing owner Darren McGeown, it introduced him to Be More Kind Day.

“I saw on Twitter that Seattle was proclaiming Be More Kind Day,” said McGeown. "It was all in honour of singer songwriter Frank Turner’s Be More Kind tour stop in Seattle in 2018."

“He was supposed to only play like four songs,” remembers McGeown. “He ended up playing for 40 minutes, speaking with community members and handed out tickets, all before his show at the Winspear Centre.”

On top of it, McGeown bought lunch for about 300 people in need that day. He’s been working to keep celebrating Be More Kind Day every year on Sept. 11. Last year he ordered and handed out 500 ‘Be More Kind’ t-shirts. A gesture that wasn’t easily forgotten – on one of McGeown’s volunteer shifts walking Edmonton’s streets to hand out food and check on people for overdoses, he was reminded that a little kindness goes a long way.

“I ran into a couple who were living outside the Hope Mission, and they remembered me from giving them a t-shirt,” said McGeown. “Small little things like that mean so much to some people.”

He’ll work with Black Dog Apparel so he can hand out 500 more shirts this year, but he wants this initiative to grow. McGeown is looking to local businesses and Edmontonians to do whatever they can on Sept. 11. It doesn’t have to be anything grand, in fact the last thing he wants to do is put big demands on Edmontonians and local businesses.

“We’re all going through things,” said McGeown. “If anyone can even just donate a small portion of proceeds that day to a charity or organization of their choice. I just want everyone to do something that day. One small gesture is where it begins. If one business starts promoting or doing something on Be More Kind Day that might resonate with someone else, even a customer, and it just snowballs."

Our city is without a doubt a great big community, but McGeown said as much as we can come together to support one another or causes, there’s a lot of people who feel alone right now.

“I just think now through the pandemic we’re all a little de-humanized, we’re all a little divided,” said McGeown. “We’re maybe not as in tune but I think if we can spread the word for Be More Kind Day, it’s gonna really catch on.”