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Baltimore City Gets In The Meme Game With Drake's 'Hotline Bling' To Encourage Social Distancing

BALTIMORE (WJZ) -- Canadian rapper, Drake, came out with the song Hotline Bling in the summer of 2015, but the wildly popular songs and the memes that have come out of it remain popular to this day.

It's why, when Baltimore City was trying to spread the word about social distancing, the choice was obvious.

Emily Ianacone is part of the City's design team.

"It's Drake and the video was awesome," she told WJZ Monday, referring to his music video.

As Governor Hogan eases restrictions on some outdoor activities, the City's Health Department said people had a lot of questions about what is and is not allowed.

"We saw that folks were trying to plan cookouts and we were worried about that," said Adam Abadir, the Director of Communications for Baltimore City's Health Department.

With the warmer weather, many people were planning or asking the Health Department about having cookouts.

And that's when Ianacone thought of Drake and his Hotline Bling Meme.

She quickly created one the said; "Having a cookout with all of your friends and relatives?" Drake gestures, 'no.'

The weather is getting nicer, and we know you want to show off on the grill! Just remember, the coronavirus loves cookouts too! #COVIDCookouts #coronavirusbalt

Posted by Baltimore City Health Department on Sunday, May 10, 2020

The second part of the meme asked, "having a cookout with just the people you live with?" And is accompanied by a photo of Drake that shows he approves.

Ianacone said the hope is that the meme will be heavily shared among Baltimore's residents.

"We will use his (Drake's) populated to spread the message of social distancing and staying safe during times of the coronavirus," Abadir said.

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