The past week and a half have felt more like a month and a half with school closures on top of business closures on top of all the layers of COVID-19 pandemic news that are flooding our lives. But Mountain Brook is uniting together (with social distance) through it all. Here’s how.
1. No Kid Left Behind
Mountain Brook Schools donated food to the Levite Jewish Community Center staff that served it to kids and families who usually rely on school lunches last week. The LJCC has also packed meal bags for a local senior facility last week, and they have a drop off box for medical supply donations including surgical masks, N95s, gowns, shoe covers, hand sanitizers and head covers.
2. Random Acts of Kindness
Last week an Oak Street Garden Shop customer gave the shop a certain amount of money and asked them to send as many beautiful plants as they could to St. Martins in the Pines with that money, no strings attached. Following a special delivery, the seniors who live there have extra orchid blooms to brighten their days.
3. Masks on Demand
Leslie McDonald’s Thursday morning sewing group has been sewing face masks for medical workers to help with the short supply in hospitals. Each day they text to update each other on their progress and see what each is working on. Local designers Julie Maeseele and Heidi Elnora have also been advocating for sewing masks as well as Homewood sewing shop The Smocking Bird, which has instructions posted on its social media pages.
4. COVID Creek Cleanup
Treeline Expeditions, led by Mountain Brook Elementary teachers Bill and Suzanne Andrews, is encouraging people to pick up trash along creeks and rivers following the recent flooding as they spend time with their families staying at home. If you pick up trash in your area, they are encouraging you to log it in a Google from linked on their Facebook event and share photos and stories on social media with the hashtag #CovidCreekCleanup.
5. E-Learning Tools in Place
As Mountain Brook Schools closed their doors through at least April 6 due to the spread of COVID-19, students and teachers began to tap into existing tools for e-learning thanks in part to projects funded by the Mountain Brook Schools Foundation. The Foundation regularly provides Chromebook laptops for use in the elementary school classrooms, but principals were able to pass these devices off for students to use while learning from home during this time. (All e-learning until April 6 is optional since the schools are closed by the governor’s state of emergency declaration.) Through funding from the Foundation, elementary students have also been using a digital platform called Seesaw that students are now using to connect with students at home.
6. #CurbsideMountainBrook in Action
Many Mountain Brook restaurants are still open and offering curbside and delivery services for food and drinks. While most retailers have had to close their doors, some offer online shopping and gift cards you can buy to support them financially now and use to shop when they open. It’s also a great time to leave an extra tip for small business owners and those who work in the service industry whose finances are strained by all that’s going on with COVID-19.
On that note, LocalDistancing.com offers a directory of local restaurants and other businesses you can buy gift cards from, shop online for or donate to gofundme accounts for staff from.
Here’s a list of Mountain Brook restaurants we know of that are open for takeout and delivery. For updates on store and restaurant openings, closings and offerings check mtnbrookchamber.org/xploremb.
- Black Sheep Kitchen
- Bobby Carl’s Table
- Chen Express
- Chez Lulu
- Crestline Bagel Company
- Davenport’s Pizza Palace
- Dg- resuming service on March 30
- Finches Fine Wines
- Golden Age Wine
- Grand Bohemian Hotel
- La Paz
- Magic Muffins
- Miss Dots
- Mountain Brook Creamery
- Ollie Irene
- Otey’s Tavern
- Revelator Coffee
- R&R Wine & Liquor – Crestline
- Sol Y Luna
- Sneaky Pete’s
- Sugar Crestline
- Taco Mama
- Watkins Branch Bourbon & Brasserie
- Whole Foods- open for shopping 8 a.m.-8 p.m.
How are you seeing neighbors helping neighbors in this season of COVID-19, and/or where do you see local needs for financial or volunteer support? We’re collecting more stories to share online, on social media and in print. Email Editor Madoline Markham at firstname.lastname@example.org with any stories or information you’d like to pass on, or message @mountainbrookmag on Facebook or Instagram.