Friday, July 19, 2024
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A drive-by birthday party

CALEB NICKERSON
SHAWVILLE May 7, 2020
The numerous distancing efforts that have been put in place over the past few weeks have been trying for many, but last week one Shawville family decided to use a workaround for their son’s fifth birthday party. What resulted was a parade of about a dozen decorated vehicles as well as three police cars with lights and sirens along rue Bristol.
Meagan Hobbs said that she was determined to figure out an alternative to the typical birthday arrangements for her son Oliver, which took place on Thursday night, and added that the addition of police cars was a nice surprise.
“All I did was send an email to my family and tell them that we were going to have a little parade, but my grandpa invited the police, [which was] a little bit of a twist,” she said. “We usually have a big party every year with all our family, but this year we didn’t but we didn’t want it to be boring, so we decided to do a parade instead. We’d heard about a lot of other people doing it.”
Seated in his little electric Jeep, complete with a wagon to tow all of his gifts, Oliver, along with his parents and little brother Clay, took in the procession of family and friends filing past the house and wishing him a good one.
After doubling back, the vehicles’ occupants dropped off their presents into his little trailer, all doing their best to keep their distance.
“We just wanted to show him that we love him dearly, it’s hard for children,” said Oliver’s great-grandmother Faye Stafford, who explained that her husband Lawrence had been the one to invite the officers, as the birthday boy is a big fan of police vehicles. She added that they had been expecting maybe one cruiser, but were pleasantly surprised when three vehicles from the local detachment showed up.
Many of the vehicles were decked out with signs wishing Oliver a happy birthday, while others went the extra mile and included hockey nets or other paraphernalia.
Stafford noted that Oliver was fortunate enough to have two sets of both grandparents and great-grandparents in attendance and said that this would be something he could tell his own descendants in the future.

The birthday parade lined up in front of Dr. S.E. McDowell Elementary School before making a short trip down rue Bristol to wish Oliver a happy birthday.
Oliver Hobbs turned five last week and in lieu of a party, his parents organized a drive-by celebration for their son along rue Bristol in Shawville on May 7, which ended up including three police cruisers. From left: Oliver, Meagan, Clay and Anthony Hobbs.

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