This new hobby really rocks

This new hobby really rocks

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ROCK ART – Gwen Meek works on her rock creations.

ROCK ART – Gwen Meek works on her rock creations.

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SENIORS are getting in on the latest kids’ craze sweeping Western Australia.

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SENIORS are getting in on the latest kids’ craze sweeping Western Australia.

Thousands of children are hand-painting and hiding special rocks in parks and playgrounds for others to find.

And grandparents are embracing the craze, which encourages youngsters to put down their iPads and get outside.

Byford mum-of-two Alana Stevenson was inspired to introduce the game by a similar movement in New Zealand and has been overwhelmed by the response.

The WA Rocks Facebook page has grown to about 38,000 members since May.

Members post pictures of their rocks with clues to where they can be found.

The rocks can be kept or re-hidden for others to find.

Alana said the activity had attracted people of all ages.

“Adult daughters are introducing it to their mums as something they can do with the grandchildren,” she said.

“People without children are doing it because they like painting and brightening people’s lives.”

Thornlie great-grandmother Gwen Meek, 87, took up rock painting after seeing a news item on television.

“I am enjoying doing this activity as it fulfils my day,” she said.

“I like being able to venture out into the children’s play areas to hide the rocks and seeing the smiles on the children’s faces.

“It is a great activity that doesn’t cost much. It is a good way to get children interested in painting and they also love the treasure hunt aspect.”

Gwen tries to come up with designs that will appeal to children and has used cartoons, butterflies, flowers and humorous pictures.

Alana and her son Morrison, 10, recently visited the Dale Cottages aged care facility in Armadale to run a rock painting class with residents.

“It was great because as they drew it triggered memories for them and they started to swap stories,” Alana said.

Therapist Pauline Fisk said the group was curious about the game.

“They enjoyed painting the rocks and hearing about where they have been hidden and they want Alana to come back again,” she said.

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