Over the last couple of years, it’s likely that some of you may have stumbled across a ‘happiness rock’ in your local park, town, beauty spot or village. The craze which swept the country in 2018 has grown hugely in popularity since it began; children and adults alike have enjoyed the fun of both painting rocks and also stumbling across those suprise finds when out and about.
What is the painted rock craze?
For those of you who don’t know, the game is like hide and seek! Paint a rock and hide it for someone to find. Finders are asked to take a photo and post it to the Facebook group (usually written on the rock), being careful not to give away its secret location; they can then either keep the rock, leave it or take to another location to hide.
It’s so much fun to see how far your pained rock has travelled – some have been found in other countries! For the last couple of years, children and families have loved this game in Buxton just as they have right across the UK, there are some prolific painters out there too 😘💪 🎨.
Since 2018, Facebook groups for locations all over the UK sprung up – our local group is HP (High Peak) Rocks and there’s also a Derbyshire Rocks.
The ‘tail’ continues for lockdown
In light of the current pandemic, the ‘game’ has slowed down considerably – with concerns over transmitting the virus from rock to person and of course restrictions on movement for us all. That’s when HP Rocks group member and Buxton resident Clare Cartledge came up with a new idea – primarily as a way to cheer up passers by and give something fun for children to enoy. “I thought, the usual rock hiding has become more difficult – why not make a ‘snake’ with the painted rocks and see how far we can make him grow?!”, said Clare.
The Covid-19 snake is on Broadwalk in Buxton outside the The Argyle Nursing Home and has already attracted over 150 rocks and is growing daily. Many of the rocks feature moral boosting messages and give thanks to NHS and key worker staff as the bright designs and the now familiar rainbows – which has become the symbol of hope in the pandemic.
“I thought it was something the local children, of all ages, could enjoy on their daily exercise and the community could enjoy too – cheering up passers by, the response has been phenomenal. It’s the small things that really lift us and we need that more than ever now”.
“I wanted to make Buxton a brighter place through these hard times we are all living through – because we are all in this together”.
How big can the snake grow?!
People are being asked NOT to take the rocks but to contribute. “This is different to the usual game so we just want people to add their rocks to the ‘snake’. We don’t want to contribute to any potential spread of the virus so we’d ask people not to touch the rocks and please do social distance with others and stay at least 2m apart if you stop and take a look. The rocks look amazing, everyone who has contributed – thank you – let’s keep it going!”.
So, what are you waiting for? Can we make it go ALL the way round the Pavilion Gardens? Have fun and enjoy watching our Covid-19 snake grow!
Follow and join the HP Rocks facebook group: facebook.com/groups/HPRocks