REED CITY -- In an effort to promote community unity while still practicing social distancing, Reed City man Shawn Clark initiates the "Six Feet to a Mile" march on March 30.

Clark said he wants to get people out in the fresh air, communicating with one another, so he invited anyone who was interested in participating to join him in a walk from the Reed City Depot to the White Pine Trail covered bridge and back.

Clark said he intended to walk for one mile, with everyone paced six feet apart, to raise awareness of the social distancing order put in place by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer to help mitigate the spread of the coronavirus.

"If you go to the store, it's packed, and they are not six feet apart," Clark said. "This will be out in the fresh air and we will be spaced out six feet from each other for the walk."

Clark said he came up with the idea while he was at the park with his son and saw a family out walking together.

"I'm not seeing as many out walking as I normally would," Clark said. "I just thought it would be nice for people to get out in the fresh air and communicate with each other, to try to beat the depression of being shut in and not working. We're out in the fresh air, and we're six feet apart while we walk, so we won't be violating any orders."

The cold, wet weather may have put a damper on the event this time around, since only one other walker showed up, Clark said.

"I've even been in touch with the governor's office and she encouraged it," he said. "She thought it would be good for people to get outside and get some exercise and get to know one another, just as long as they are using caution."

"Hopefully this will become a recurring event," Clark said. "I don't know how many will turn out for it, but I will do it again next week. If we get a better day, maybe we will get more people.

"I think we need this in the community," he added.