Jodi Palmer, co-owner of Macon Magazine, knew there was something special about the magazines annual 2011 Five Under 40 rising community leaders.
Previous groups would get together and talk about issues, but not much else would come from those sessions.
But Palmer noticed that the 2011 selectees -- Josh Rogers, Pilar Wilder, Wes Griffith, Julia Wood and Heather Bowman Cutway -- wanted to do more than just meet and talk.
They were enthusiastic, she said. They really love this city.
And they wanted to ignite that love in other residents. So they started the I Love Macon campaign a year ago to promote positive aspects of the city.
On Tuesday, the group announced that it had met the goal of getting 10,000 signatures on the I Love Macon pledge just days before the Jan. 31 deadline.
Almost exactly a year ago, we knew we wanted to do something, Rogers told a crowd of about 30 people at the corner of Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and Cherry Street. One thing we noticed is how happy we all were to be here. ... We wanted the love we feel for Macon to share with other people.
Wood told the crowd how the I Love Macon logo has appeared in a variety of places throughout the year, including a half-marathon in Savannah and on someones wedding cake.
Cutway said the group isnt certain what is next for the campaign, but hopes the magazines 2012 Five Under 40 class takes up the baton.
Id love to see what they want to do with it, she said.
To learn more about the campaign, visit www.ilovemacon.org.
To contact writer Phillip Ramati, call 744-4334.