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Happiness Delivered to Downtown Businesses | News

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Happiness Delivered to Downtown Businesses
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LAS VEGAS -- A group of people with smiles on their faces and colorful picket signs in their hands descended upon Downtown Vegas on Friday. However, they weren't there to protest anything. Instead, they were gathering to show their support for all the local businesses in the area.

The positive rally, or "reverse picket", was organized by Delivering Happiness, a movement that was born from the similarly-titled book by Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh.

Clair Byrd works in Delivering Happiness' CHAT department, which stands for Community Happiness Action Team. She explains that after the book launched, it was turned into a bus tour to see what type of people were actually reading the book. They expected it would mainly be business professionals, but were surprised to find that teenagers, grandmothers, teachers, lawyers, nurses, and a gamut of other people were reading it as well. That discovery spurred the Delivering Happiness movement, whose goal it is to nudge the world towards a happier place.

Delivering Happiness recently launched a community initiative called "Acts of Happiness" designed to spread and inspire positive change around the world. That initiative is the reason they are picketing in Downtown Vegas.

"We decided that pickets are really powerful but generally really negative, so we're harnessing that power to go and tell local businesses how much they rock!" said Byrd.

Led by head organizers Byrd and Sandi Herrera, the group began their picketing at The Beat Coffeehouse. Over a dozen people of all ages cheered and chanted in front of the Emergency Arts building where The Beat is located.

"It's a lot of fun. We got a lot of people out here and they're all making signs. We're gonna take the Happy Bus and go around and help local businesses and help promote them," said Herrera, who is in charge of operations and HR. She oversees all the projects that Delivering Happiness is doing on a daily basis, including Friday's picket.

The volunteer picketers were shuttled around Downtown on the "Happy Bus". The tour bus took them to The Smith Center for Performing Arts, Theater 7 Las Vegas, The Arts Factory, The Artifice, The Lady Silvia, and back to the El Cortez.

Delivering Happiness volunteers
Delivering Happiness volunteers "reverse picket" in front of the El Cortez in Downtown Vegas.

Everywhere they went, their "random act of happiness" was met with appreciation from the business owners as well as customers and passersby who let the group know that what they're doing is making a positive impact for everyone in the downtown area.

Along the route, the bus would make spontaneous stops so that the team could hand out Tony Hsieh's book to random pedestrians, helping to further spread their message of happiness around the downtown area.

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