New Kincardine game aimed at connecting the community and having fun


By Barb McKay

Move over Pokemon Go, there is a new game in town.


Kincardine Rocks is a fun scavenger hunt aimed at getting kids and adults alike out exploring the community. The game was initiated by Kincardine resident Mary Beth Dennis who discovered that her family was playing a version of it in their town.

“My sister in Tilbury and her daughter and granddaughter have been playing it there,” she said. “There’s another game in Guelph and it is really taking off in both communities.”

After doing a little research Dennis learned that the game originated in Cape Cod as the Rocks of Kindness Project. In 2015, a resident, Megan Murphy, began writing inspirational messages on rocks and scattered them around her town of West Barnstable and beyond for people to discover and read. The intention was to spread hope and comfort to those who found the rocks. The idea has since spread around the globe where similar painted rock initiatives inspire acts of kindness.

In Ontario, the rock project has become more of a game for children, a way to encourage them to take a break from their screens and electronics and go outside and have some fun. Dennis has painted a number of rocks with bright colours, characters and themes and hidden them throughout Kincardine. Some of the initial locations include Victoria Park, Geddes Park and Queen’s Lookout.

Dennis is hopeful that children will get in on the game by painting their own rocks and hiding them in the community. Rocks should be hidden in public places, avoiding grassy areas where they could be run over by a lawnmower. Dennis’s rocks have the Twitter hashtag #kincardinerocks painted on them and she encourages others to do the same.

To play the game, anyone who finds a rock should take a photo of it and post it on the Kincardine Rocks Facebook page and/or Twitter and then re-hide the rock for someone else to find.

“If the kids hide a rock it’s nice to see who has found it,” Dennis said. “It’s just a way to spread some joy and have some fun.”

Dennis said the rocks can be painted as simply or elaborately as children, or adults for that matter, want.

“If a kid just paints a rock yellow that’s okay. It doesn’t have to be fancy.”

Dennis said if enough rocks are painted and hidden the rules of the game may be changed to allow a rock to be taken home or gifted, as well as re-hidden.