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Hinesburg Neighborhood Gathers for Nightly Noisemaking 

click to enlarge The Friesen family - COURTESY OF JAMIE CUDNEY
  • Courtesy of Jamie Cudney
  • The Friesen family

Photographing families on their front porches has become a popular way to document life during COVID-19. Jamie Cudney, a pediatric nurse at the University of Vermont Medical Center, was interested in the idea as a way of "capturing this moment in time for my neighborhood," she said.

On Friday, April 3, she and her neighbors started a nightly ritual called "Front Porch Noise" after a neighbor, Frank Twarog, sent out this group text:

"Please join us for some front porch noise making at 7 p.m. to show appreciation for our healthcare neighbors, friends and families who are on the front line — and who need to know how thankful we are, even in the quiet of our homes!"

click to enlarge The Twarog family - COURTESY OF JAMIE CUDNEY
  • Courtesy of Jamie Cudney
  • The Twarog family

Every night since, said Cudney, "our neighbors are out in unity as we are physically isolated from each other." The ritual took on greater meaning when Twarog lost his mom to COVID-19 on the morning of April 13 at her home in Massachusetts. His dad was unable to be there with his wife of 57 years — he was in the hospital fighting the virus himself. Said Cudney: "Now our nightly tradition represents appreciation, unity and remembrance."

For Cudney, there's only one rule for the front porch photos that she's begun taking of her neighbors: Come as you are. "I wanted to capture our neighborhood ritual in a candid way — sweats, flannel, jeans, yoga pants and slippers," she said. They're meant to be "a true reflection of a moment of time with each family at 7 p.m."

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