My first Valentines Day here in Portland was February 14, 1988. I was delightfully reminded of this city's whimsical spirit when I noticed an 8x10 sheet of paper with a big red heart. It was attached to a storefront window on Congress by a couple pieces of masking tape.

As I continued down toward Monument Square, I saw another big red heart, and then another one, and another one. Suddenly everywhere I looked, these simply made expressions of love would pop up. Still today the big mystery remains.

How do these red hearts suddenly appear all over the city without the person or people being seen putting them up? It's gotta be a team of of lovemongers to pull off a feat this big, right? Huge hearts have even appeared out in Casco Bay and I saw one this morning on the Portland Public Library.

How? Who? We still don't know know for sure. There are a few folks out there who know the Valentines Bandit's identity but their lips are sealed (with a kiss). It's definitely the best kept secret around.

Yeah sure, there's a part of me that would like to see the hero or heroes who bring this gift to Portland every year. But I don't really need to know. After all it's too much fun to believe in the magic that is the Portland Valentines Bandit, reminding us that love is all that matters.

Here's some great photos taken around the peninsula today from the City of Portland Facebook page.