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Loudoun Rocks is the new Pokémon GO

Alison Krawiecki of Leesburg recently hid these painted rocks in Foxridge Park in Leesburg. Facebook/Alison Krawiecki
Last summer, the latest kids craze centered around virtual Pokémon. And this year? Kids are hyped about something a little more tangible – painted rocks.

If you happen to spot artificially colorful rocks around town, don't be surprised. A new trend is growing not just in Loudoun, but around the country, and it is turning into this summer's big hit.

Kids of all ages are painting rocks with messages and images, and then “hiding” them for people to find.

Stefanie Egee of Purcellville started the Facebook community page Loudoun Rocks in January, and it is quickly gaining momentum with over 430 members.

“It is something positive focusing on kids art in the community, and it has really caught on this summer,” Egee said.

She said finding a rock is a way to spread kindness in the community. When a rock is found, she said you can either take it with you or leave it for someone else.

People are hosting rock-painting parties and then placing them anywhere from Target to the playground to the library. Photos, post-deed, are highly encouraged.

Heather Guin of Lovettsville said her daughter's Daisy Troop has enjoyed doing painting parties this year. The girls have placed the rocks around school or wherever they are when out in the community.

“It is so much fun to be walking around and see a rock with a special message or picture,” Guin said. “It puts a smile on your face,” she added.

Guin's three children ages 14, 6 and 3 have all been involved with the project.

“I love putting out some butcher paper on the table and they all go to work painting rocks and sealing them. We keep a box of rocks in our car,” she said.

Liz Jarvis of Purcellville works with the Purcellville Arts Council, and she said she is happy to see kids doing something creative and outside the house.

“We probably came home with about a hundred pounds of rocks from our trip to Michigan this summer,” she said.

Leah Kosin of Leesburg started the Rock out Leesburg page after discovering the new "rock frenzy" while visiting family in Erie, Pa. She recently organized a paint party with her three children and their friends, and said it was great to see kids working together on a project which they all enjoy.

Amy Tucker's Girl Scout troop in Sterling has also hosted painting events. She said the last one had over 50 people attend, which led to a couple hundred rocks being painted and hidden around Loudoun.

“The girls and siblings were very excited to get together and do something creative, but also to spread some fun and smiles around the area,” Tucker said.

How it works:


-Find several smooth, flat rocks – either at a craft store or in outside in nature.
-Paint the rock in any design and write #LoudounRocks, #RockoutLeesburg or #AldieRocks on the back.
-Coat with a sealant for weatherproofing.
-Find a good place to hide your rock, take a photo, and provide clues on the Facebook pages.
-When you find a rock, take a photo and post it so people can see what has been found.
-Join Loudoun Rocks, Rock Out Leesburg or Aldie Rocks on Facebook to share your photos and clues.



Contact the writer at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or on Twitter at @KarenGGraham.

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