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‘We definitely weren’t expecting to get filmed’ – Calgary coronavirus dance party captured by police helicopter

Coronavirus pandemic or not, sometimes the rhythm is going to get you.

For a group of Calgary friends just trying to stay connected, the last thing they were expecting was to go, well… viral.

“We definitely weren’t expecting to get filmed. This whole thing just kind of blew up,” said Maryem Elhariri.

Inspired by a Tik-Toc trend, Maryem Elhariri, Rhea Shah, Alex Bhamjee, Adviti Sharma, Ariana Vandervaate, and Ondia Saffarpour decided to have an impromptu dance party in the parking lot of Bakers Park on Tuesday, April 7.

“Rhea was coming home from Toronto and she said we should try this, and then suddenly we were on the news,” said Saffarpour.

It wasn’t long before they suddenly found themselves with a high-flying audience.

Assumed the Calgary police were going to bust them

“We were blasting music from our cars and some of the dog watchers started watching us, and then suddenly there’s this giant, police helicopter above us,” said Aima.

“We didn’t even really notice it until it was leaving.”

Although the girls had put more than enough space between them, they assumed the police were there to bust them.

“We thought, imagine if they took a video of us, and then a couple days later we saw the video and thought we definitely got ticketed,” said Aima.

To the girls surprise, the Calgary Police Service was actually one of their biggest fans.

The video was posted to the CPS Facebook page. It praised the girls for finding a fun and responsible way to practice social distancing.

“Our HAWCS helicopter routinely patrols #yyc for suspicious activity,” the post read.

“Earlier this week when they came upon a group of vehicles in a parking lot, there was nothing suspicious going on except for a midday dance party! Thank you to all citizens, and these parking lot dancers, for doing your part and physical distancing.”

Huge response to coronavirus dance party

Since the video went up on Tuesday, it has received over 135,000 views.

“All our moms shared it. My mom is our biggest supporter,” said Elhariri.

Elhariri’s mom, Mayada Naguib, is thrilled with the positive message the girls have sent.

“When she left to see her friends I was concerned. Her response was ‘mom don’t worry, it’s planned well and we’ll be safe,’” said Naguib.

“I was proud of how the girls took the safety measures that seriously.”