By Craig Marx, Editor
If you happen to be walking about in the Antigo area and stumble across a decoratively designed rock along your path, you have just been graced by one of the many Antigo Rocks stones that have made their way to Langlade County.
Antigo Rocks has been in the area for two months now and offers the community a chance to personally decorate, hide and discover rocks to be shared on social media, showing the power of making someone’s day with something so small yet artistically expressive. With over 300 members on the group’s Facebook page, artists have a chance to create their stone-sized visions while walkers, hikers, and bikers have the opportunity to come across and share these delightful creations with the community.
“It is great chance to get everyone outside, especially for the kids, as a fun and social activity to do outdoors in Antigo,” said Jessica Rios, who helped the Antigo chapter of what is a nationally-participated activity get its start.
The Antigo contingent was inspired by the Fox Valley Hidden Rocks group, whom themselves can trace their origins to Whidbey Island Rocks (a group operating out of the eponymous city in Washington) and so on down the line. Connected and inspiring other groups across the nation, the artistry and activity of the rock painting and collecting community is spreading.
Since their discovery, pictures of certain rocks found locally have taken and posted online from as far away as Washington state and Washington, D.C., keepsakes of the works local artists that obviously brought joy to another.
Antigo Rocks encourages the community to join their Facebook page as any lucky person may stumble across an artist’s work in a variety of locations. Sharing photos of the discoveries is half the fun itself, and often times artist include reminders or initials on the backs of their stones to help the discover find their way to Facebook.
As the rocks are found in typically random, outdoor locations, there are a few guidelines that the group observes, such as not placing rocks in public parks (for fear of damage to lawnmowers) and not placing rocks in area businesses or otherwise private property. Pretty much everywhere else is open for discovery, and mention has been made that the Spring Brook Boardwalk is a particular hotspot in the city.
The rocks are generally seal coated for weather protection and help give the stones a shiny gloss. As the weather continues to get better in Northern Wisconsin and the word spreads about Antigo Rocks in general, perhaps more and more personalized rocks will catch both the rays of sun and the eyes of would-be stone searchers.
“We are so excited to help get the community involved,” Rios added. “We made our Facebook age to where anyone can join – we just have to accept the request. We would love to get as many people as possible to take part.”
Please join the group’s Facebook page, Antigo Rocks, to join for more information and photos of recent discoveries.