British Columbia

Abbotsford Avengers turn garbage day into show for cooped up kids

An Abbotsford, B.C., city garbage crew has been doing their trash runs as Spider-Man and Captain America for the past few weeks, bringing smiles to children and families in their community.

Garbage crew turned guardians want to entertain children who are bored staying at home

Bryan White, left, and Brad Sandquist play music from the Avengers movie soundtrack to let their fans know they're coming. (Ken Leedham/CBC)

Waiting for your trash to get picked up might not be the most exciting quarantine activity, but an Abbotsford, B.C., garbage crew has turned it in something you can marvel at.

Brad Sandquist and Bryan White, or Spider-Man and Captain America as they have come to be known by some households, have been doing their trash runs in full costume for the past few weeks, bringing smiles to the faces of children and families in the Fraser Valley communities they serve.

"With all this pandemic going on, all the kids are at home... they're isolated, they're probably bored," said Sandquist, who first came up with the idea to entertain children along their route.

Sandquist says their employer, Emterra Environmental, is supportive of the costumes as long as they're staying safe. (Brad Sandquist/Facebook)

"I just figured, I'm just going to dress up in my Spider-Man suit and see if I can put some smiles on some faces."

At first, he says people were a little confused. But when photos of him throwing trash into the back of their trucks circulated on social media, people in the community started to keep an eye out for him.

The crew often plays the Avengers soundtrack from their garbage truck as they drive around the neighbourhood, giving their young fans time to come out and watch for them as they pass by.

Brad Sandquist and Bryan White wave at a family as they move on to the next house, after picking up their trash. (Ken Leedham/CBC)

"Another boy along one of our other routes has a full captain America helmet, which I'm kind of jealous of," said White in his own Captain America costume.

"They're coming out and being ecstatic. It's making everybody smile."

Sandquist admits his spidey senses got him into some hot water with his supervisors when photos of him performing handstands and acrobatics during the job came to their attention.

But he says he has their full support.

Abbotsford Avengers make garbage day a show for the community

2 years ago
Duration 1:04
Brad Sandquist and Bryan White hope to entertain children who might be feeling isolated or bored while staying at home

"My boss has asked me to refrain from doing anything outside of the normal work activity, that way I'm protected and safe," he said.

Sandquist and White say they're going to keep donning their costumes — during good weather only — and are trying to convince their colleagues to join them with their own superhero costumes.

Sandquist says the smiles make it worth it.

"I just want kids to be happy," he said. "We were kids once and we got bored, so I get it. it gives you something to look forward to."

Sandquist and White say they now have seen kids coming out in full costume to greet them during their routes. (Brad Sandquist/Facebook)

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