The main speaker at all of Wednesday's events surrounding the big UW Health Sports Factory grand opening was the author of a love story.
"What I try to do is get people to change the focus away from the negative stuff to the positive stuff," said author Peter Kageyama.
He wrote a popular book about the love affair people have with places. It's called "For the Love of Cities."
He came to Transform Rockford's community workshop to help residents think of ways they can make others fall in love with Rockford, too.
This was the author's first visit here.
"It's a river city. A really wonderful river city," said Kageyama. "Five, six, seven years ago, this really wasn't the case. So I think kudos to you guys for really embracing the idea of rediscovering your river. That is so important and cities would be very lucky to have as much green space and as much activity as you have on your river."
Transform Rockford asked people at the event to come up with an idea or project that could be funded with $815 in honor of the cities area code."
The winning idea was "Rock the Rock" It's about bringing rock concerts back to the Rock River like On the Waterfront in the past.