Kindness rocks bring heartwarming message to McGregor, Marquette

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Two weeks ago, the “kindness rocks” movement made its debut in McGregor and Marquette. Residents are encouraged to decorate and hide their own rocks, and/or find those hidden by others, all in the hopes of spreading kind messages around the communities. (Photos by Audrey Posten)

Kindness rocks can be placed anywhere—in parks, along trails or walking paths and at local businesses or offices. One was recently spotted on one of the street pianos in McGregor’s Triangle Park.

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times Editor

It all started 2.5 years ago, when writer, business mentor and empowerment coach Megan Murphy began collecting rocks during her walks along the beaches of Cape Cod, in Massachusetts. Reflecting on her own life and the idea that people often search for “signs in the sand,” she began decorating the rocks in bright hues  and with inspiring messages. She then placed them on the beach, for others to find. The goal: to connect people through a small act of kindness.

Today, the “kindness rocks” movement has reached communities across the United States, with people decorating and hiding their own rocks in unique spots, or finding those hidden by others. They then share their experiences on social media, through “kindness rocks” pages or groups. 

Just two weeks ago, kindness rocks made their debut in McGregor and Marquette, with the help of McGregor resident Emily Krambeer.

Emily said she began a “McGregor-Marquette Iowa Kindness Rocks” Facebook page after participating in a group in Prairie du Chien.

“I saw all the fun ideas and how everyone has participated and loved it,” she said. “I went to see if there was a group for my hometown and there wasn’t, so I created it. I wanted my community to be involved.” 

So far, Emily and her husband, Lucas, and step-daughter, Lyvea, have hidden 25 rocks.

The idea was appealing, she said, because it offered family time without cell phones, T.V. or other electronics.

“We all find the rocks, Lyvea and I paint them and Lucas drives us around to hide them,” she shared. “It has been wonderful doing this together.”

While her family will continue to paint and hide rocks, she encourages others to join in. 

There’s no limit to how rocks can be decorated. Many feature eye-catching colors, creative designs and  inspirational sayings like “live, laugh, love,” “be happy,” “smile” and “believe.” Others resemble animals, cartoon characters or sports team logos. Paint and markers are popular tools.

Kindness rocks can also be placed anywhere—in parks, along trails or walking paths and at local businesses or offices.

Emily said two of her family’s rocks were recently discovered on the street pianos in Triangle Park, in McGregor. The finder’s Facebook post, with the quote “Yippee!” touched her heart.

“I loved it,” she said. “Someone found our rocks and it made them happy. That’s what we wanted. This is a great way for Lucas and I to teach kindness to Lyvea and what it’s all about.”

Emily said she hopes the rocks will not only offer kindness, but bring community members together and boost community morale.

“I hope it makes the community members feel proud, kind and happy knowing they are doing something good in the lives of others and in their own lives,” she said.

To learn more and to stay connected with the kindness rocks being hidden and discovered in your neighborhood, check out the “McGregor-Marquette Iowa Kindness Rocks” Facebook page.

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