From: Alyssa

Happy day to you, the first in what will be a year full of happy days :) heres a Dallas Clayton reminder and a message from Lake Champlain. Coming to California in August, see you there.

From: Andrea

hap birth

From: Ashleigh

Happy birthday Mike! I’m sending you a photo of VT, as it (and we) miss you.

From: Bonnie

From: Brittany

For your birthday, I made you the silliest Photoshop collage on the face of the planet because I don’t know how to make real art. I was trying to figure out what I could make for you, so I went into our friendship on Facebook and started looking through old conversations to get ideas. I couldn’t stop smiling. Our friendship is magic. My favorite comments can all be bucketed into one of three sentiments. One, is that you consistently make me feel more alive. Two, and I guess a side effect of number one, is that you help me see meaning in life. Three, you just make life a kinder, more beautiful place to be. If you look at the Facebook conversations I included in this college, you will see what I mean. From picking tulips to driving around listening to awesome music to jumping in the lake, you know how to live your fucking life. I cherish our friendship every single day because you help ground me and bring me back to what really matters. So, hopefully this collage brings you back to times in Burlington with us Facebooking each other so we could make plans to meet up and hang in or around the lake. I love you and I hope we are friends forever and ever. Happy birthday!

From: Buzz

i know you, just enough drunk in your empty apartment but unscathed so you think you’re fucking invincible now a boxcar and a jug of wine

and me sitting in the dark listening to Freshman Year wondering why I’m dreaming about someone else’s glory days

it’s been days but they’ll bleed into months and years and we’ll let them

From: Candy

A sunrise picture for you representing the beauty that is present in nature and all the possibilities a new day has to offer - happy birthday!

From: Craig

It’s your birthday, and I wasn’t sure what to make you— then I heard this band in my Discover Weekly, and immediately was like, whoa, Mike Fowler.

As I was about to post the album to your wall and say “Happy Birthday,” I realized— for someone who so regularly goes out of his way to inspire more people than I can even count, I needed to do something more… inspiring.

So, I bought the album, sped it up x2, bought 5 boxes of sparklers (the good ones with pink paper on the ends), went to a good spot to film the sunset, and share these sparklers with strangers.

The sun only sets once; I had one shot.

Mid-way through the first song, a couple asked me to take their photograph, just as the sun sets.

Then, as it turns out, yelling “free sparklers!” without any notice is too weird, even for Portland.

I left the frame to give 3 girls my age some sparklers, and with sped up music blaring in my ear, I regrettably answer their question of why I’m there with “I’m filming a music video… for a friend, it’s his birthday” and realized: Oh, I look absolutely insane right now, this has gone horribly wrong.

The song was nearing its end, so I ran back, clumped all 40 sparklers all of the sparklers in one wad, and swang that birthday torch around like an idiot.

A spectacular failure, I felt completely awkward, but hey— I know I made at least one person smile, and it felt so right for your birthday.

Happy Birthday. I hope you know how many people you make smile.

(Oh, and the band is Still Parade, the EP is Fields, and this is only two of the 4 songs, I cut the second and 4th songs for this edit.)

From: Debbie

Happy Birthday Mike! So thankful we had the opportunity to create some beautiful memories in Italy. Love you.

From: Duchess

Proud squirrel friend Ash: Your music tastes do not suck. More adventures soon..?

From: Dwight

A toast from Burlington, via Interlaken… Happy Birthday Mike!

From: Ginger

“Hope”, inspired by the Emily Dickinson poem “Hope is the thing with feathers”.

From: Hannah

From: Husam

From: Kerri

I will leave you with the joke my 10 year old self wrote: what do you call it when your brother is screaming in your ear?

…ear-itating.

Happy birthday

From: Lindsey

This is easily my favorite picture I have ever taken and on a super crappy camera phone that was the last non-smart phone I owned. Happy birthday and miss you very much.

From: Lyric

Bandana above Bushy beard and ‘stache below Kind thoughts in between

Happy birthday, Ash! Hope you have a fantastic one!

From: Mike A.

Mike, Happy Birthday!

    —Mike

From: Nathalie

Happy birthday Mike! Ever wonder what your name looks like in dots and dashes? No? Well here it is anyway 🙂

From: Nija

Permaculture gardening is the kind of “art” that I do. I think you care about this picture because it shows the slow process of deliberately creating highly nutritious soil for growing organic foods.

I chose this picture of my front yard because it shows the two main drought-resistant water-storage features my partner and I created during the last few years - in the foreground is a part of our hugelkultur covered with reclaimed pine clipping and the rain garden (decayed and water logged wood chips in a hole that goes down about 3 feet and rises about 3-5 feet above the soil level). Both of these features create extra spongy soil that slowly releases water to the surrounding ground when needed and otherwise soaks up water to store.

Water supply is one key to creating self-sustaining food forests; nutritious soil is a second. In this picture, you see the balance of most raw ingredients - pine needles, cover crops, companion planting - about 3 years before it will be amazing soil. All that it needs is a bit more manure, and another layer of straw or mulch!

From: Okieohio

Happy birthday! This photo was taking at the Dallas State Fair. Though I am not a big fan of cow manure and overpriced fried food, the photo does have meaning for me. Magical things can be seen even in the least expected of times and/or places. Here is to past, present and future my friend. Wishing you the best on your birthday!

From: Penny

Happy Birthday, Mike! I can’t post every single emo video ever made so this Saves the Day album will have to suffice

From: Ray

Celebrating your birthday over here with a bit of fresh popcorn.

From: Stephen

HAPPY BIRTHDAY MIKE YOU OLD SOUL

From: Steve

Happy barfday, buddy.