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OUR VIEW: Friends, neighbors more important now than ever

It’s a difficult time for most of us as we get used to a new reality at least for just a few weeks (we hope).

As the coronavirus spreads in Kentucky, we all are having to make sacrifices to protect ourselves, our loved ones and our community.

For the most part, that sacrifice means social distancing. Many are working from home, and those with children are adjusting to homeschooling.

Most are being responsible neighbors and citizens by adhering to the governor’s and state public health officials’ requests to stay home when you can, to practice good hygiene and to keep a distance when you must go out.

We want to thank those of you who still must go to work each day despite the fear and anxiety that surrounds this virus. Whether you’re a grocery store employee, a first responder, a health care provider, a gas station clerk or whatever else, you are heroes in our eyes.

As we adjust to the change in pace, the ever-present fear and anxiety and the frustrations of some level of isolation, it is vital that we continue to focus on the good in our community.

We wanted to point out just a couple of the things we’ve seen happening in our community over the last couple of weeks that made us smile.

We hope they will reinforce the strength of our community for our readers and inspire others to continue finding the good in an all-around crummy situation.

After Leeds Center for the Arts posted to their Facebook page Sunday morning an idea for “bear hunts” in Clark County, the community jumped on board. So far, dozens of stuffed animals of all sizes, shapes and sorts have popped up in local windows. The movement is all for the children in the community. Families can take time to go on “bear hunts” together, spotting the more than 50 stuffed animals throughout town. After their hunt, they can spend more time together doing something creative. Post those creative endeavors, whether a painting, a drawing, a story or a song, online and use #LeedsFamily to stay connected with others taking advantage of this community-building movement.

When local restaurants found out they would need to close their dining rooms last week, many owners and employees felt scared and helpless. The community stepped up in a big way to make sure these businesses can continue to support themselves even through this crisis. There has been a huge eat local movement with people posting regularly online about the support they have shown by eating out at our various restaurants in town. Main Street Winchester has also developed a list of local restaurants and the services they are offering, which is being update regularly.

There are other ways we can band together and help each other as we get through this, it just takes one inspired person to take an idea and make it a reality. We know there are many others in the community looking for a bright spot in all this.

You can each make a difference, and it doesn’t have to be some grand act.

Call a friend who might be feeling isolated.

Check on your neighbors.

Grocery shop for those in the vulnerable population.

Do a random act of kindness.

Support a local business.

Donate blood.

Practice social distancing.

Make sure not to hoard when you make your trips to the grocery.

Spread positivity and messages of hope.

We have seen the resiliency of our community through this difficult time.

If you know of other exciting things happening within our community, let us know about them so we can spread the word. Email us at news@winchestersun.com.

Editorials represent the opinion of the newspaper’s editorial board. The board comprises publisher Michael Caldwell and Bluegrass Newsmedia editors Whitney Leggett and Ben Kleppinger. To inquire about a meeting with the board, contact Caldwell at 759-0095.