A new treasure hunt initiative has Fort McMurray rocking
Fort McMurray Rocks! You live here and know this, but one local is taking our community ‘rocking’ to a new level that’s getting everyone from educators to artists involved.
FortMac ‘Rocks!’ is a newly-launched Facebook group based on a trending treasure-hunt/hide-and-go-seek game. Over the past year, this idea has been vastly spreading to communities throughout Canada and the U.S.
The concept is simple. Residents paint rocks and hide them for others to find. The best part is everyone can take part!
It was launched less than two weeks ago after Fort McMurray resident Tina Tetreault was vacationing in Florida with her friend Lynette Butt. It was here where Tetreault took part in her first hunt.
“Lynette was very excited to introduce rock hiding to me. She has painted many beautiful rocks. She is into it,” Tetreault explained. “She’s a hardcore rock hunter. She was in the bushes, over fences and down hills to the canal. I loved painting the rocks.”
Tetreault, the program director at Educare Early Intervention, said she wasn’t really into hiding and finding at the start, but then joined a Florida Facebook rock page and soon learned how much excitement surrounded the idea.
“So many children and families were doing this together. Then, it all made sense. The next few days, I would watch people walk in the park while my friend did her daily hunt. People were out secretly looking. Some were trying to hide them. Some women would walk by and say: “Are you searching or hiding?” It’s THAT popular,” she said. “That’s when I said to Lynette that this would be fun to start in Fort McMurray. I wondered if it would work.”
Now with over 1,500 followers on their Facebook page – and counting, people are busy painting and heading out to explore.
“After making the page on May 14, there were 822 members in three days,” she expressed. “I had my Educare Preschool families paint rocks at their graduation. They painted rocks and hid them all over the Lion’s Park downtown.”
Tetreault said she hopes this will be something for residents of all ages to enjoy.
“This can be an exciting activity for everyone – young and old,” she said. “Perhaps, residents will walk through the Birchwood Trails and discover how beautiful Fort Mac is and remember how lucky we are to still live in our beautiful city? When they find a rock from a resident who took the time to send a kind message on a beautifully painted rock, it will bring joy.”
Anyone can paint a rock. Anyone can look for rocks.
Anyone can leave a rock.
Tetreault has a few tips on how to get started by suggesting looking on Pinterest for inspiration by searching: ‘Rock Hiding’. Also, she encourages others to reference the local group page: ‘Fort Mac Rocks’ on the finished projects by writing #FortMacRocks. This will help others learn about the initiative and find the group.
What will you need?
- Rocks of any size
- Acrylic paints
- Spray Sealer
The next steps:
- Hide the rocks in your neighbourhood, popular park – anywhere. Get creative!
- Post photos of the rocks you found on the Facebook group – this makes it fun for the person who hid it to see that it was discovered.
“The fun begins when you see your painted rocks being found and posted on Facebook and re-hid,” Tetreault said. “The goal is to get lots and lots of people from across the community painting, so there are lots of rocks to be found out there.”
Are you ready to get Fort McMurray rocking?
Dawn Booth, Editor of YMM Parent