• Family-friendly art projects rock Zais Park

  • Participants were encouraged to paint whatever they wanted on their rocks.

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  • Katie Peterson | Staff Writer
    Dozens of parents and children took advantage of the clear skies to paint some rocks at the Fort Leavenworth Arts and Crafts Center’s “Summer Rocks” rock-painting event May 31 at Zais Park.
    “I was first made aware of citywide programs like this when I lived in Tacoma, Wash. It was called ‘Tacoma Rocks!’” said Kelly Robinson, Arts and Crafts Center multi-craft class instructor. “Artists and non-artists alike would paint rocks and hide them in the park system. Other people would hunt them like a sort of geocaching exercise, and it was a great adventure for both the artists and the seekers.
    “I know several other cities that do this as well, and it creates a lot of positive energy,” she said. “My family and I have stumbled across a few on occasion, and it brings us lots of joy. Summer seems like a great time to pass some of that positive energy around our communities.”
    Participants were encouraged to paint whatever they wanted on their rocks.
    “Regardless of artistic talent, they will bring a smile to someone’s face,” Robinson said. “No one has to be artistic to do this. Some of my favorite rocks are ones that have a simple heart on them or look like a vegetable or have polka dots.
    “I just want people of all ages to come and enjoy the opportunity to create something that makes them or someone else smile,” she said.
    Children were creating all kinds of designs on their rocks.
    Eight-year-old Esmeé Couture made two rocks, one of the sea and one of the night sky.
    “I like to paint,” she said. “It is really fun.”
    Eight-year-old Alex Davison took inspiration from the Lego two-faced head pieces to create his rock.
    “It is actually really fun (to paint rocks). I was sort of excited, but when I actually got here I was actually really happy to (paint),” Davison said. “I’m probably going to put it next to my trophies.”
    Parents said they enjoyed the event, too.
    “I think it is great. It is an easy event that we can walk to and is fun for both of my kids, which is hard to find,” said Christy Dumas, mother to 9-year-old Carson and 7-year-old Clara. “It just lets them be creative, and it is a great opportunity to interact with other kids that they might not otherwise interact with.”
    Katy Patterson, mother to 9-year-old Alyvia and 5-year-old Madelyn, said her daughters were excited to participate in the event.
    Page 2 of 2 - “It is great to get the kids outside to do something different so they’re not sitting in the house playing on their tablets and their computers and just let them be creative,” Patterson said. “I think it is very cute.”
    Barbara Davison, mother to Alex, 5-year-old Abby, and 4-year-old twins Ayden and Austin, said the event was just another example of what makes Fort Leavenworth such a great community.
    “(Fort Leavenworth) is just unlike anything I’ve ever seen. It is a pretty spectacular place,” Davison said. “I wouldn’t ever want to leave here. If I could keep all of my friends here and all of us in this tiny bubble, I would stay forever.”
    For more information about upcoming classes, call 684-3373.
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