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Family rallies to show why Canmore rocks

“I would love other families to do it. It’s a super-easy way to spread a message,” said Lise Konik. “My hope would be that this could be the community of Canmore painting on rocks.”

CANMORE – Looking to craft tiny treasures of hope for those feeling isolated during the COVID-19 pandemic, a Canmore family has launched an art project to remind people that even during a time of physical distancing the community remains united.

Grade 5 teacher and mom Lise Konik said her daughters Chloe, 14, and Abbey, 12, came up with the idea to paint rocks with inspirational messages to spread around the community.

"Our vision is to just paint them … it doesn’t have to necessarily be for anyone in particular,” Konik said.

“It’s safe, you can go out for a walk with your family. We’re lucky in Canmore because we can go to a lot of places and not see many people and find rocks. It’s a way to be creative and have a little bit of a purpose.”

They were inspired to create the rocks after seeing the heartfelt signs and inspirational messages people placed in windows around the world.

Chloe and Abbey painted flowers, hearts and inspiring words on the rocks, crafting little bursts of light to counteract the darkness of the COVID-19 virus.

The best part, Konik added, is they can use anything from paint to markers to create the works of art.

“The paint may wear off, but that’s OK; it’s for that moment,” Konik said.

The family has already painted about a dozen rocks with messages of hope and unity that have been hidden anonymously on neighbours' doorsteps, trailheads, gardens, walking paths and other popular places.

“If you know someone who’s a nurse, leave it in their driveway,” Konik said. “They don’t have to touch it [the rock]. It’s a safe and easy little thing. They can go anywhere and that is what I like about it ”

She added that it is a great activity because people can safely go for walks as a family to hunt for rocks to paint.

“You can go down to the river for rocks, or one of those other quiet places in Canmore. You can find rocks pretty much everywhere,” Konik said. “You can take it and put it where you want.”

Konik added she has a vision of people placing rocks outside areas where essential workers are located including the fire hall, hospital, police station, or grocery stores.

Konik hopes other people are inspired to grab a rock and paint other messages to share in the community during the pandemic.

“I would love other families to do it. It’s a super-easy way to spread a message,” Konik said.

“My hope would be that this could be the community of Canmore painting on rocks.”

After the pandemic comes to an end, Konik thinks it would be neat if people could come together to make a monument with the rocks somewhere in town.

“It’s a record of this time,” Konik said. “If it turns into something bigger, I think that would be super cool.”


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