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City skyline blinks in nightly ritual to cheer up sick kids

In this Wednesday, Aug. 24, 2016 photo, a flashlight, with a "Good Night Lights" sticker on the lens, rests on a table in the room of hospital patient, Olivia Stephenson, of Lincoln, R.I., who lays in bed at right, in Providence, R.I. Businesses around the children's hospital flash their lights on and off every night as a way to say goodnight to sick children inside. Skyscrapers, a nightclub, tugboats and hotels are among the places that flash their lights to communicate with the children. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
September 29, 2016 - 10:17 PM

PROVIDENCE, R.I. - For one sparkling minute each night, blinking lights from skyscrapers, tugboats, hotels, a yacht club and police cruisers send a goodnight message to sick kids inside a children's hospital.

A gesture that began with a single bike light cheering up a patient six years ago has become a nightly ritual in Providence, Rhode Island.

Giddy kids inside the Hasbro Children's Hospital wait for 8:30 p.m. each night, when strangers flash lights from high-rise buildings and waterfront decks and parks. The kids get their own flashlights to return the message.

The hospital's resident cartoonist, Steve Brosnihan, started the phenomenon, known as Good Night Lights, and keeps expanding it by inviting more businesses and other groups to join the display.

Some bigger buildings now have automatic signs to display messages each night.

News from © The Associated Press, 2016
The Associated Press

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