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Canadian boy, 6, sets up comedy stand to make neighbours laugh during coronavirus pandemic

Vancouver Island boy sets up joke stand
We don't have a lot to laugh about right now because of the pandemic. But a Saanich boy is trying to provide some relief and smiles, by setting up a joke stand. Paul Johnson has the story.

A British Columbia boy is bringing smiles and laughs to his neighbourhood during the coronavirus pandemic.

Every day, once all of his daily activities are done, six-year-old Callaghan McLaughlin sets up a joke stand outside his Saanich home.

Mom Kelsea McLaughlin shared a sweet photo on her Instagram account of her son sitting at the stand on his opening day, April 14. The sign reads: “Drive-by walk-by joke stand.”

“Please drive by and hear a joke from this kid,” she writes.

Callaghan usually sells lemonade at this time of year, CNN reports. He and his mom made a smart move by shifting gears to a contactless operation — much safer during the coronavirus pandemic.

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“I know about 13 or 14 jokes,” Callaghan told the publication.

For about 45 minutes every morning, the young entrepreneur is at the side of the road offering laughs to anyone interested.

“He goes back to do a matinee show in the afternoon,” his mom told CNN.

While his jokes are mostly borrowed from the kids’ joke book Laugh Out Loud Jokes For Kids by Rob Elliott, Callaghan is a jokester in his own right.

“Callaghan has been actively telling us one-liners and knock-knock jokes for the past six months or so,” his mom told Yahoo Life. “We felt it was time for a fresh audience.”

It’s a fun way for her son to spend his time, and is just as beneficial for their community, which includes a lot of elderly neighbours.

“I think it helps [people] to feel a little more connected, because they’re one of our more isolated community groups,” McLaughlin said.

Some of his friends and even his principal have come by to hear a joke or two from a safe distance — and they aren’t the only ones who’ve taken note of his savvy.

He’s even caught the attention of fellow Canadian and Hollywood veteran Ryan Reynolds, who hailed him a “hero” on Twitter, to which Callaghan’s mom replied: “If Deadpool says it, and his mom says it, it must be true.”

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When Callaghan isn’t telling jokes, he’s dreaming of a safer world. He wants to be a scientist when he grows up.

“I want to invent things to make the world safer and cleaner.”

Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:

Health officials caution against all international travel. Returning travellers are legally obligated to self-isolate for 14 days, beginning March 26, in case they develop symptoms and to prevent spreading the virus to others. Some provinces and territories have also implemented additional recommendations or enforcement measures to ensure those returning to the area self-isolate.

Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.

To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out.

For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, click here.

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meaghan.wray@globalnews.ca