LANESBOROUGH — There's a new wave coming over Berkshire County — a wave of parades, that is.
Through horn honks and waving hands, neighbors, first responders and educators are taking to their vehicles to spread some socially distanced cheer through the streets of our mostly shuttered cities and towns. It's one way people are satisfying their craving to gather for a loved one's birthday or to entertain those who are shut in, without getting out of a car or stepping foot into a house.
Starting at 5:15 p.m. Wednesday, Farmington River Regional School District staff will be waving their way through Otis and Sandisfield, with Otis Police Chief Daniel Hamill leading the way in his cruiser.
On a brisk but, at times, sunny Saturday morning, it was the town of Lanesborough that lined up a wave parade, coordinated by the town's Volunteer Fire Department. Police, ambulance, rescue and towing crews were there in uniform, with lights on and thumbs up. The Sheffield Volunteer Hose Company scheduled two wave parade times over the weekend.
A firefighter and Easter Bunny atop Lanesborough's Engine 1 waved to onlookers standing alone or in pairs on street corners and front lawns — some onlookers were wearing face masks; others were in pajama pants or sporting baseball caps — smiling and waving back.
Afterward, dozens of resident photos and video clips appeared on social media, thanking the crews for their effort.
But, as a hand-colored sign on Engine 3 indicated, the public, which remains in place, also should be commended.
"Thank you for stayin' home," it read.