Creative do-gooders painting smiles one rock at a time
Similar to a creative game of hide-and-seek, the idea is pretty simple: paint a rock, then hide it. If you find a rock, snap a photo, post it on the Facebook page for Seneca County Rocks!, and then re-hide the rock.
So what exactly is the purpose of these groups, and what is it that they hope to accomplish?
It’s simple, really. By joining a rock-seeking group, it’s your mission to make someone’s day in the form of a hand-painted rock decorated or scripted with an inspirational message of your own. Then, you’ll have to anonymously leave the painted stone in a public place (think parks, stores, libraries, public events) for someone else to find.
After seeing a post on the Northwest Ohio Rocks Facebook page, Dawn McDonald, the Facebook page creator for Seneca County Rocks!, thought this would be a great way to spread smiles in Seneca County. McDonald contacted Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz, Seneca County Commissioners, and the Tiffin police department to make sure rocks could be put all over. They thought it was a great idea, and many are now participating members of the page. “To date, I have painted many, many rocks. To start the page, I painted 200 rocks in February 2017, and I’ve been painting ever since.”
McDonald’s Facebook page has over 2,000 likes, with members from all over the area posting photos with a brief message about their experience. McDonald’s mission was to cheer up people: “every member does that,” she said. “I’m so grateful for so many angels.”
With the interaction of posting the photo on Facebook, the kindness comes full circle. “The person who hid the rock smiles, the person who found the rock smiles, and then when it is posted on the page, the creator smiles knowing his or her rock made someone’s day,” McDonald said.
Everyone is welcome to join. “I just tell people to remember it is family-oriented, so with that in mind, have fun painting,” McDonald said. “I do not encourage putting rocks in stores, because with all the video cameras in stores, I don’t want someone thinking they are taking something from the store and putting it in their pocket, when in fact it is a rock. So I ask that people ask permission before putting rocks in stores. I have received a couple e-mails from the store managers requesting that rocks are not put on their shelves or in fish tanks.”
On the Facebook page under Files, McDonald has the Seneca County Rocks! label that can be printed and adhered to the bottom of any new rocks.