Unable to work during the coronavirus pandemic, EJ Dougher still manages to get thousands of people on their feet and dancing.
Now should be the start of the busy season for the West Scranton DJ, known as “EJ the DJ.” But, with weddings postponed and the school events for which he often provides music canceled, Dougher still wanted to reach an audience.
Each day, he sets up his equipment, wears his signature hat and hosts live dance parties on Facebook, from his “party porch.”
“I thought if I could get everyone up and dancing for one hour, it would be great,” he said. “They forget about what’s going on.”
Family, friends and complete strangers say they do just that: enjoy the music from their homes, without worrying about the outbreak.
Dougher mentions birthdays and anniversaries and highlights local businesses that remain open, or businesses that people can support by buying gift certificates. His live videos are often viewed 4,000 times or more.
His wife, Penny, acts as “producer,” and daughters Olivia, 16, and McCae, 19, make dance party appearances too.
“It’s been cool,” Olivia said. “It’s hard for him with his job, not being able to do anything. … It’s been nice to see my dad happy.”
McCae thought the dance parties would just reach some of her dad’s friends, not people from around the world.
“It’s a good way to spread positivity, especially in times like this,” she said.
Sarah balances life as a reporter for The Times-Tribune and as the mom of two little girls. A graduate of Ithaca College, Sarah started covering education in 2006. She has received awards for her reporting from the Society of Professional Journalists, Pennsylvania Newsmedia Association, Inland Press Association and Pennsylvania Women’s Press Association. She lives in Clarks Summit with her husband, their daughters and their sweet pug, Sadie. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org, 570-348-9133 or @HofiusHallTT.