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Silicon twin seeks the lowdown on Listowel lockdown

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Listowel Fire Service members who – along with the ambulance, healthcare staff and other frontline workers – are being saluted by the Chamber Alliance this week for their vital service

Listowel Fire Service members who – along with the ambulance, healthcare staff and other frontline workers – are being saluted by the Chamber Alliance this week for their vital service

The recent online conference between the representatives of Silicon Valley town Los Gatos – home to Netflix among other global tech giants – and Listowel leaders.

The recent online conference between the representatives of Silicon Valley town Los Gatos – home to Netflix among other global tech giants – and Listowel leaders.

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Listowel Fire Service members who – along with the ambulance, healthcare staff and other frontline workers – are being saluted by the Chamber Alliance this week for their vital service

A big Zoom link-up from a sister town in Silicon Valley; the development of a directory of those actively trading now in Listowel; and one big thank you to frontline heroes - restricted as things might be, there's certainly plenty happening.

Mayor of Listowel Jimmy Moloney was delighted to represent his townspeople on the recent Zoom conference with representatives of Listowel's sister town of Los Gatos in the heart of Silicon Valley.

It's a sister town with an incredible reach. As the home of Netflix, Los Gatos can be said to be a major contributor to the mental health of the world in the lockdown.

The summit was as the result of Los Gatos reaching out across the world to see what they could learn of the experience of the pandemic in its sister towns.

The similarity of life in the shadow of COVID-19 between Listowel and Los Gatos was all the more remarkable for their separation by an ocean and continent.

It's just some of the names are a bit different. Los Gatos's Chris Diane Wiley said their town sought the summit "so the folks of both towns get a feeling of what we are both going through in these challenging times. While you're 'cocooning' and we are in a 'stay-in-place' situation, it should be a good chance to chat about are situations and the results of such."

Cllr Moloney said it was wonderful to reconnect with Listowel's Silicon Valley friends of old once more: "It was great to talk about our experiences of the pandemic and lockdown and to rekindle old friendships between the towns once more."

He said the good folks of Los Gatos had an impressive grasp of the situation in Ireland to begin with and were keen to find out everything they could - one of their big questions asked if Listowel had experienced a shopping frenzy as the lockdown struck.

Meanwhile, the Listowel Business and Community Alliance this week is developing a section of the Listowel.ie website - 'Shop Listowel' - as a directory of shops that are currently opening as the restrictions ease.

"We strongly urge all businesses in Listowel to let us know their plans to open as we will share this information on Listowel.ie and regular updates on social media. Please send an email to Colette at info@listowelalliance.ie with details of your business," Chairperson, Listowel Business & Community Alliance Rose Wall urged, adding: "Most importantly we wish to recognize the incredible work being done by the frontline staff and all of those assisting essential works through their incredible volunteering throughout this crisis. At times like this, it really does show what an amazing community lives in North Kerry, all working together."

Kerryman