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Shout it out: City sets community happy hour to yell encouragement

In an effort to keep community spirit alive in the time of the pandemic, the City of Ironton has issued a proclamation for a “Community Happy Hour” for people to give a shout out to their neighbors while still staying a safe distance apart.

The proclamation, announced by Mayor Sam Cramblit and signed by the city council, said that the Ironton, like the rest of America, is responding seriously to health concerns about spreading COVID-19, but still wants people to interact with the neighbors in a safe way.

So, the city is asking in the proclamation that “as a tangible and daily way for residents to connect in person while still practicing social distancing guidelines, all Ironton residents are encouraged to go outside each evening at 6 p.m. to wave at each other and shout out words of encouragement.”

Cramblit said he was talking to councilman Craig Harvey about how other cities had done similar types of things.

“He had heard from a resident about doing something like this, too,” Cramblit said.

So, he, Harvey and Jacob Hock talked about it on Saturday and then created a proclamation tailored to fit Ironton.

“Most importantly, we know there is a need… this situation is having an impact on people having to stay home,” Cramblit said. “We know that mental health is just as important as physical health.”

So, the question was what could they do to have people talk to each other but still stay safe.

They decided to have a specific time for everyone to come out in their yard would be ideal, since in many cases people may not know their neighbors that well.

“We just thought it would be a good thing to come out, maintain a safe social distance and communicate with each other and help everyone to remember to enjoy their life while we go through this,” Cramblit said. “I think it will bring all of us closer together after all this is over. So come out and get to know your fellow community members. Embrace what we have. Stay positive.”