Hoover neighborhood organizes drive-thru scavenger hunt for kids stuck at home during COVID-19 pandemic

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HOOVER, Ala. (WIAT) — The COVID-19 pandemic is an unprecedented and confusing time for adults and kids alike, but if you drive through the Riverchase neighborhood Thursday, don’t be confused if you see Halloween and Christmas decorations on full display.

Danielle Buchanan came up with the idea of a drive-thru scavenger hunt to keep neighborhood children entertained while they practice social distancing. More than 175 families have signed up to participate and more than 70 homes will have decorations out on display for the kids to hunt.

Buchanan told CBS 42 that while the purpose of the event is to have fun, she hopes it is also a learning opportunity for children to understand the importance of social distancing to protect vulnerable populations.

“I doubt I’ll even get to take my kids on this — I’ll be working tomorrow,” Buchanan said. “But my mom will take them, they will enjoy it, and hopefully that just shows them that it’s not about you, it’s about doing something good for the community.”

The Abston family is one of more than 70 decorating for the event. They are re-purposing a popular Halloween display to do so.

“We’re all socially active and we want to be in other people’s company but what we have to realize is that during this time we have to respect — we have to respect the distance,” David Abston said.

His 9-year-old son, Eli, told CBS 42 that as many as 40 drivers a day stop to snap a picture of their display which includes a scary Halloween doll they have named Jaime with the message: “Wash your hands — Jaime is watching.”

Families that signed up to participate in the hunt will receive instructions via email with a hunting list and a printable decal to place on their car windshields.


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