Monique Baird Savastano of Whippany and her 10-year-old son Vinny were enjoying a beautiful day outside when their afternoon unexpectedly got a whole lot brighter. “We were at a park and my husband was playing football with our son,” Savastano recounts. “The ball was overthrown and landed near a bush, so Vinny ran over and noticed a painted rock on the ground. He was so excited, he pocketed it and brought it right back to me!” The rock was fairly large with “Be Positive” spelled out on the front in big green letters, plus a website for Rockin’ Kindness painted on the back. The organization, which began in Rutherford, paints rocks with bright colors and inspirational messages.
The project has been gaining traction all over New Jersey. Finders have the option to keep their rock, but Vinny decided to follow the direction that Rockin’ Kindness recommends: placing it somewhere else. “He was most looking forward to hiding the rock for someone else to find,”says Savastano. On the project’s website, rockinkindness. com, you can “tag your rock” and they will add it to their map of where others have been found. They encourage local treasure hunters to spread the love and make rocks of their own to place around town.
Rockin’ Kindness’ founder Jennifer Metzger of Rutherford is thrilled with how the project has taken off. “So many different groups are making rocks now: Girl Scouts, community groups, school systems,” she says. “I really can’t believe how it’s caught on!”