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  • Writer's pictureThis Is Rutherford

Rutherford Resident Designs Special Keychains

By Jennifer Ersalesi

Photo credit: Matt Cokeley

As a ten-year Rutherford resident, Matt Cokeley has found many reasons to love where he lives. After taking a photo of a maintenance hole cover this past spring, Matt designed a special keychain from the photo. This is Rutherford spoke with Matt about the inspiration for these keychains, his collaborator, and the reasons why he is happy to call Rutherford his hometown.

TIR: Where is this maintenance hole located in town?

Matt Cokeley: The cover itself resides in front of my house under the hoop where we play basketball with our kids. I was playing against my son after a recent rainstorm and noticed that my neighbor's cherry blossom petals had settled into the embossment almost perfectly.

TIR: Why did you decide to design keychains using that popular photo?

MC: I posted the photo to the "It Takes a Village" page since it has been such a resource for positivity and community support. It ended up being one of my most liked photos ever and as a designer, I recognized the opportunity to create something special.

TIR: Where were these keychains produced?

MC: Chris Griffin is my go-to for when I design or produce something and need products fast and professionally created. The company he outsourced to is called The Monterey Company out of Bend, Oregon.

TIR: The keychains are VERY popular and you have already received many orders. How are you feeling about their popularity?

MC: I am a little overwhelmed, to be honest, but only from a logistics standpoint. I thought maybe we would sell 20-30. I personally delivered almost 80 over two days last week! A new batch of 200 has been ordered to meet demand and once Chris and I clear our expenses for production and delivery, we have agreed to donate some of the proceeds to the Rutherford Food Bank.

TIR: Who do you think these keychains appeal to?

MC: They seem to have appealed to everyone. I was told by one customer that the blend of heavy metal and pink enamel was a perfect marriage of both masculine and feminine qualities.

TIR: On the back of the keychain, the words “Love Where you Live” is engraved. What do you love about where you live?

MC: I love the community feel. I grew up in Somerville, NJ which is almost a mirror image of Rutherford. My kids can run, play, and explore town safely like I used to do. It has just felt like home since we moved here.

TIR: Why did you choose Rutherford?

MC: We chose Rutherford at the time for it's proximity to NYC for me and my wife's office at the time. We have stayed for the reasons listed above and for so many others too.

TIR: Why do you think people are proud to live in Rutherford?

MC: I believe Rutherford, for the most part, is a collection of people intent on doing good and treating others respectfully. I feel like it is a family-first community regardless of how your particular family is defined and that the majority of us strive to help care for each other.

If you are interested in purchasing keychains, you can Venmo: @Matthew-Cokeley or use PayPal: mrcokeley. Each keychain costs $8. Please include your address in the notes section.

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