GRAND LEDGE, Mich. (WLNS) — Four years ago, Allen Walter had an idea.

“We got this empty wall and all summer long we got these really pretty flowers and then fall comes and it kind of looks eh,” Allen said.

Allen worked at Mac Dowell’s as a service manager from 2010 to 2021. He said back in 2018, he decided he didn’t want to lose the decorations on the outside wall of the building when the flowers died.

So, to keep it alive, he dressed it up himself.

“We got a scarecrow lets put one up and see what happens,” Allen said.

Then he took it one step further, and asked the community to get involved as well by creating a contest.

“I have a business division. I have a youth organization division. I have a kids division, and an adult division,” Allen said.

Allen invited people to make their own scarecrows, so he could add them to the wall. He said the community delivered.

“You get hundreds of likes. People are liking it. People are sharing it. People are driving by. If I’m standing out here putting their scarecrow up, they’re blowing their horn and yelling at me,” Allen said.

Since starting his scarecrow contest, Allen has ventured out into other holiday decorations as well.

From his Christmas wreath competition in December to his “Heart the Wall” event in February, Allen said he hopes the wall warms people’s hearts.

“It brings a smile to my face, I’m… I’m happy that people are reaching out and it doesn’t cost anything when you give somebody a smile,” Allen said.

He encouraged anyone thinking about creating something meaningful in their community to just do it.

“If you got an idea, go after it. I started out like this wondering what was gonna happen, and here we are. It’s building and building. It’s very exciting. I love it,” Allen said.

Allen welcomed anyone and everyone to come check out the wall. It’s a tradition that’s going 4 years strong and that Allen said, he’ll continue for years to come.

“Come down, take a peak, and put a smile on your face,” Allen said.