One man just wants to share the love in Kaikohe and he's got a great name for it — Rawiri Love.
He's the fellow who is painting the colourless mid-North town sunshine yellow. Through Love's efforts and a community groundswell, a wall on the town's busiest, in-yo-face corner is now bright yellow and emblazoned with a giant smiley face.
The mural is just one of the ways Love's shining a light on Kaikohe. I call him to find out more and get a crash course in Smileydom.
He tells me he'd been pondering an identity and brand for Kaikohe. His lightbulb moment came at a foot spa night he organised to give Kaikohe mothers a treat.
My interest is truly piqued, but Love has sped way ahead of the foot spa night. Somehow, that event was the genesis for his Smiley Reports, the "smiley campaign" of unscripted videos he publishes to YouTube and his Facebook page. Each Smiley Report focuses on an individual or a positive event in the town, and aims to promote Kaikohe as "the friendliest town in the North".
"Smiley says 'Kaikohe, let us smile together'," Love patters during our mile-a-minute phone chat.
That might mean just one person grinning because through the Smiley Report they've recognised a happy thing in their own life, or it could be wave of chuckles in the community; as in smile and the whole world smiles with you.
There are bigger themes, too.
"A mother who drives her children and their mates to a sports game, she's leaving a legacy, she's a hero. Let's broadcast that."
No town is a lost cause, no community without heart, and, says Love, "there's a bit of a revival happening here".
For a century, Kaikohe was a boom town with the timber rush, the land rush, farming, forestry: Kaikohe lived or limped along with the rise and fall fortunes of those landholder or Government based, labour-intensive industries.
Outside town, fat farms and those they support still thrive, raising the district's mean income higher than outsiders might imagine. There's a prison industry too, and plans for more pine-related industries. That's ahead, though.
For now, is it rude to suggest Kaikohe looks like a fairly dull town from the outside, Love ponders. Might some people even consider it run-down? Is that too harsh?
Love leaps to defend his town (he only moved there last November, he admits.
Loath as he is to give an impression of Kaikohe as poor cousin, the town can't compete with the scenery of Paihia or the economy of Kerikeri, but it does have an abundance of friendliness, he says.
Ipso facto the campaign which sees smiley-face logos popping up all over town, Smiley scenarios beamed out from places such as an old bank a couple is turning into a hotel targeting Twin Coast Cycle Trail riders, the new youth centre Te Uma o Te Kona, the Kaikohe children's Funfest day.
Armed with his video gear and gift for the gab, Love is fearless about interviewing random people on the street, and doesn't give a hoot about puffing and panting alongside anyone moving faster than his natural pace of choice.
It's both slapstick and slick. Love has skills, he's entrepreneurial, driven, has worked in film and marketing, is writing kids' books based on the Smiley-saves-a-town thing.
Smiley is poised to go global, Love tells me. But, before world domination, there's plenty still to do in Kaikohe, like cementing in that "friendliest town" brand.
The Smiley Reports have gone nuts on social media, more than 56,000 hits isn't unheard of.
Love's had his hand shaken by people from all over the show. One guy from Balclutha came through Kaikohe during a Northland visit especially to meet Love.
He's been invited to schools, service clubs, recently a combined business association and community board meeting to talk about, and also to film while there, Smiley Reports.
The big new mural, which various parties including Te Uma o Te Kona had a hand in getting up, didn't bring its sunshine without first having a little rain on its parade.
"The painting took a week. The whole negotiations process took, ahhh, let's say longer than a week," Love says.
Some people, possibly those who don't hang about in the middle of town very often, tell me when I phone around that they've never heard of Love or the Smiley Reports, or the goal of perking up Kaikohe, or understood why it's needed. There is no one side to Kaikohe, one man tells me.
"Don't get me wrong, not everyone likes it. Not everyone likes me," Love says of the campaign. "They say 'who is this guy who just moved here last November and is telling us what our town needs'?"
But those Smiley Report hits speak for themselves and since the big smiles went up on the corner of Broadway and Station Rd Love's had retailers, business owners, shoppers and local kaumātua stop him in the street and thank him for giving the town this new positive spin.
Love knows Kaikohe remains a place of many parts (or did he say hearts?) but Smiley has become his mantra and one day he hopes it will be Kaikohe's cause celebre.
"See the moko on Smiley, that's so we can Trademark it," Love says, quickly adding that no one can actually own a smile.
Cute. But it's not the moko or the cartoon grin that catches my attention, on-screen, on my end of the phone. It's the corner, Broadway and Station. Just about everyone heading to the Big Three — the court house, The Warehouse and MacDonald's — has to go past the relentlessly cheerful message.
"Yes, I know," says Love. "Brilliant, eh."
There's no reason those people can't get the blessing of smile, a positive message that might make even a small difference to their day, he believes.
"Whanaungatanga, that's the message of Smiley."
To watch the Smiley Reports go to www.facebook.com/smileycampaign or search for Smiley Campaign on YouTube.