CHESHIRE — In an effort to bring the community together, the Town of Cheshire, Cheshire Chamber of Commerce and Cheshire’s Lights of Hope started a “Nightly Bell Ringing.”
Each night at 8 p.m., residents are asked to ring bells as a sign the community is united as it faces the threat of the pandemic
“During this time of isolation and separation it’s really a show of solidarity, giving the people something to do and kind of unite behind something positive during this time that we’re in,” said Town Council Chairman Rob Oris.
Oris heard about other towns holding a bell ringing and brought the idea to Yetta Augur, president of the Cheshire Chamber of Commerce.
“We had heard about it from a couple of other towns,” Oris said. “I heard the town of Canton was doing it. I actually have a sister who lives in Canton. She had messaged me about it. At the same time, I actually had a conversation with (Yetta Augur)...she had heard about it as well. So we thought it would be a good idea to implement it here in Cheshire to the extent we could.”
The first bell ringing occurred March 24 in a small way. Oris is hoping for more participation as time goes on.
“I see a lot of stuff on Facebook, people are getting the message out, so I’m hopeful each day it’ll get a little bigger,” Oris said. “Hopefully we will start to get the churches involved...”
The town, chamber and Lights of Hope are hoping the nightly routine will show their support for community members.
“I hope they have something to look forward to,” Augur said. “I hope they know we are here and we created this collaboration to bring unity.”
Oris isn’t sure if it will continue after the virus threat has subsided.
“The whole point is to do it now. We’re isolated and separated at this time,” he said. “It’s really a way for us to let our neighbors and friends and the community know that we are here — we’re with them. We’re all going through the same thing together and united, we’ll persevere...It would be great if we can take some facet of this forward. The one thing that I can hope is in the face of these difficulties, we’ll learn some good life lessons and hopefully we are all reflecting on what’s important to us all as individuals and as a community.”