Portland’s Anonymous Valentine’s Day Bandit Caught in the Action
Don't worry...it's still Portland's best-kept secret.
One of the coolest things that Portland has is the Valentine's Day Bandit. Portland's best-kept secret is back again. The so-called Valentine's Day Bandit struck again placing hearts all over the city. Steven Bridges was out one cold February 14th morning around 3 am a few years ago and caught the bandits as they papered Portland.
Don't worry, even though they were caught in the action, they remain anonymous. Heck, that's half the fun. But the curiosity is palpable. Maine Public Radio reported that hundreds of red paper hearts were on Portland storefronts and other landmarks. There was a huge banner outside the Portland Public Library. Another was placed at the top of the construction site for what will eventually be Maine's tallest building. Last year they hung a heart from the crane!
This has been going on every year since the 1970s. Wow...I had no idea. I love the dedication. The morning that Steve caught the bandit(s) at work, it was 12 below zero.
It's worth a trip to Portland to see the hearts plastered everywhere. Cary Tyson, the executive director of Portland Downtown, told Maine Public Radio that the Valentine's Day bandit has earned 'creative access' to places around the city over the years. How does it all happen in one night?
How does Santa get all the presents under the tree? It's a little bit of magic. A little bit of fairy dust.
There is no official number of hearts around the city, but they are plentiful and delightful. It's hard to be in a bad mood when you see a sweet red heart.