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  • Mark Olivito

"Where Are You From?" The Golden Question

Updated: Oct 11

Thank social medial for the daily "happy national_____ day." Today's made me smile:

#HappyNationalNewJerseyDay.


"Where are you from?"

I've always been fascinated with this basic question. I would argue that on a list of 10 things that shaped who you are......WHERE you grew up has played a major role in who you are.


I grew up in NJ. But I spent 5 years in Boston (for college), 3 years in Ct., 3.5 years in Cincinnati, and 8.5 years in Memphis, TN. BEFORE returning to my home state in 2014. Bouncing around the country certainly lends perspective and a new found appreciation for your home state. My wife is from NY and we have a never-ending battle on which state is better. There's no winner, there's no end, and this has been going on for 19+ years! Apparently both NY & NJ may have a touch of relentless in their respective water systems.


Just the word "Jersey" conjures up many images from across the country, many not so positive. Too many think that the sights you see flying into Newark Airport (smoke stacks, industrial, the NJTP) IS New Jersey. Couldn't be further from the truth. I can't help but defend my home state, from the diversity of food options, to being within 45 minutes of a city (Philadelphia or NYC), mountains or beaches depending on where in the state your at. And we even have fun intra-state rivalries between "North Jersey" and "South Jersey."


Taylor Ham or Pork Roll? A classic NJ Debate

NJ is also the home of PAVERART.


The business was launched over 17 years with a major project in the iconic Jersey Shore community of Wildwood, NJ. PAVERART built 4 decorative streetscape intersections.....turning Pavers into PAVERART in a major way.


PAVERART: Wildwood Streetscape Pre-Packaging

Wildwood NJ Streetscape by PAVERART

Wildwood NJ Streetscape Intersection by PAVERART

To this day we use this story when we get some version of a critical question:

"How long will PAVERART last?"

All we do is point to this project. 17+ years. Millions of Cars. 17 NJ winters and all those snow plows. The salty air. And they still look great.


We have a bunch of other examples, but there's only one, Project #1.

Wildwood solidified our 2 basic design principles PAVERART:

1) WOW Factor!

2) Built to Last


We've gone on to build designs that show up all over the country, from coast to coast and everywhere in between.


When the phones ring at PAVERART we always try and understand how people discovered us, and where they are from. It's amazing how their location tends to work its way into the conversation and often times, it shapes how they approach their projects.

"Where are you from?"

Love this question. Love learning something about what shaped the person and what's unique about their home town. If nothing else, I often gain a tip or two to put on my field trip list. Try it the next time you chat with a stranger, or someone you'd like to know better.


And next time you find yourself in NJ, you have an open invitation to come visit us at PAVERART.



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