By Matt Sorensen
The resilience of the community we all call home should never surprise us. Vernon was a tight-knit community before we were staring down a global pandemic, although we have been stretched, and tested our bonds to one another remain stronger than ever. While being physically distanced we have all found ways to remain together. We should never take our community for granted, in times like these we band together, outshine everyone else and lead as an example.
Every night at 7 p.m. bells start to ring, pots and pans start to bang, car horns even beep, until 7:02 when we all step back into the ring that is our new reality. For those two-minutes, we forget about our struggles that we have been battling every day and remember that everyone else around us is in the same fight. During those two minutes, we let our neighbors know that we made it through another day no matter how hard that day was. Hope rings from 7-7:02 p.m., hope that we will all see the end of this pandemic and hope that the end is near. Hope is all we have to hold onto right now and hope rings every night throughout Vernon.
On a cold April morning, teachers from V.E.S. lined their cars to put on a parade for their young students who don’t understand the magnitude of what is happening around them and just want to see their friends and teachers. The roughly sixty car long caravan drove all around Vernon trying to see as many families as possible. To the young kids whose school years abruptly came to an end being able to wave to their teachers from their yards or bus stops meant a lot and they likely will never forget that moment.
All around Vernon windows have been decorated with teddy bears and Easter egg cutouts to entertain friends, neighbors, and strangers as they walk through their neighborhoods. It is amazing how creative some people have gotten with a little extra time on their hands. Parents all over Vernon are having to adapt to being home full time with their kids, putting an old teddy bear or an Easter egg cut out in your window may seem like a small contribution on your part, but it is having a big impact for a lot of people. To anyone walking by, an Easter egg or a teddy bear in a window should symbolize unity and hope that together we will prevail.
While family walks or walks/runs to get away from your family are at an all-time high there is always an opportunity to do some good within the community. The new official date for Green Up Day is May 30th, until then you can still collect trash on the side of the road now. To request Green Up bags fill out this form. If you are comfortable using your own town trashbags that is also welcome. We ask that you treat Green Up bags the same as you would town trash bags, separate the recycling as you regularly would. While we may not be able to live life as we previously knew it we can still have a positive outlook on the situation. Cleaning up our beloved home is just one way to live positively through these tragic times.
The Easter Bunny returned to Vernon despite everything going on in the world around us. On April 11th, the Easter Bunny drove around Vernon on an Easter egg hunt of his own waving to smiling kids the entire way. While normal Easter traditions have been interrupted we are finding ways to continue living fulfilling, happy lives by finding the best in every day.
During these difficult times, it is important to remember and appreciate our community. While we are all in this fight together, so many other communities are shattering. We live in a special place, everything going on in Vernon to keep us all connected should not be taken for granted. There is hope in every day that passes by, it is our civic duty to find that hope and share it with the rest of our community because we truly are stronger together. While the world has come to a screeching halt Vernon is buzzing, it should come as a shock to no one that our community is as strong as ever.
By Matt Sorensen