Birthday celebrations from six feet apart

Michael Lillywhite, Reporter

CHARLOTTE, N.C. Families are finding new ways to stay safe and social throughout this period of social distancing. For the Silver family, that meant canceling Ethan’s 9th birthday party.

Photo courtesy of Tara Silver

“We had originally planned on taking him and a couple of friends out to lunch and then for a few rounds of mini golf,” said Tara Silver, Ethan’s mother. “My husband and I both work in the hospital and we knew we had to do our part, but we also knew we wanted to do something special.”

Tara Silver works as a physical therapist and Pierre Silver, Ethan’s father, works in materials management in the emergency department of Atrium Health.

Despite social distancing boundaries, the Silver family still found a way to celebrate.

That evening, cars lined up in the neighborhood to honk, send best wishes and sing Ethan “Happy Birthday.”

Ethan’s grandmother found the idea online earlier that week.

“I knew this would be something we could do as all of his closest friends live in the neighborhood,” Tara Silver said. “It’s a quick outing, no cost, and no cleanup — my kind of party.”

Including Ethan’s friends, around 25 families in cars drove by to wish him a happy birthday.

“At first I only invited my son’s closest friends to come but then I thought with a family friendly neighborhood of this size and everyone being locked down, why not invite everyone,” Tara Silver said.

Some drove from as far as Huntersville.

“He smiled ear to ear and loved every second,” she said.