William Street in #Barrie is showing our love and gratitude to @TeamRVH every night at 7:30pm. Sincere thank you to our local #healthheroes for going to work while we’re staying home. ❤️ #ShowRVHLove @cityofbarrie pic.twitter.com/j0RZhk8DFS— Katie Biddie (@katiebiddie) March 29, 2020
Every evening for the last several days, there's been a huge commotion of banging and clanging in an Allandale neighbourhood to thank health-care workers for everything they're doing during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Each night at 7:30 p.m., neighbours make a racket on William Street as a sign of appreciation for those who are working at Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre (RVH), putting themselves potentially at risk to keep others safe.
William Street resident Katie Biddie described the ruckus to BarrieToday and provided the back story. She said it was started by some of her neighbours, the McNair family, across the street about a week ago.
"We had no idea what was going on. They have four kids and all of their kids were on the front lawn banging pots and pans," said Biddie.
So, she ventured out to investigate and find out what was going on, and quickly joined the chorus.
It has since grown in the local community.
"In the past week, now there's maybe seven or eight houses going out every night at 7:30," she said during an interview over the phone, adding another neighbour blasts Summer of '69 by Bryan Adams. "We all bang on pots and pans, and then when it's done, we all cheer and say thanks, have a good night and head back inside."
Biddie says it's the least they can do for people who are in the thick of the global pandemic at the local level.
"Banging on pots and pans is one thing, but I don't know how else we can show our gratitude," said Biddie, who shared a short video on Twitter, Sunday, with the hash tags #ShowRVHLove and #HealthHeroes. "I know can stay at home, but I'm so thankful for everything they are doing in the hospital."
She said it has made here feel an extreme amount of pride in her neighbourhood.
"My husband and I just moved to this house in October, so we're brand new to the neighbourhood, and we just feel like we hit the jackpot when it comes to community," Biddie said. "We've only just met and talked to each other a few times, but it's the unity thing and it's bringing everyone together.
"It's tough times and it feels nice to be connected to these people and showing our gratitude for health-care workers," she added.
Biddie hopes other neighbourhoods will do something similar.
After finding out more details about what it was all about in her neighbourhood, Biddie says she has heard about similar displays of gratitude in places such as Guelph and Vancouver.
"This is the only one in Barrie that we're aware of, but we haven't ventured out too far, either," she said.
"The message is spreading."