February 1st marked the beginning of Weyburn's latest round of "Rolling with the Gnomies", a crafty hide-and-seek game organized and presented by the Weyburn Arts Council. The community wide event will see a total of 17 new clay gnomes, 4 returning gnomes, and 1 special edition gnome hidden around the streets of Weyburn for residents to seek out and discover. As gnomes are found, participants then re-hide their gnomes in a new location and update the special Facebook Page with a clue to its new location.
City Curator Regan Lanning started this year's gnome-ageddon by hiding Zinnia in a place where the flower loving gnome would feel most comfortable.
"Zinnia does love plants, so if you look downtown you're BOUND to find her," Lanning hinted. "Like a lot of us, Zinnia has anxiety. She was excited to take part in the exchange but also a little worried, so she brought her favorite plant along with her, which is a little daisy in a purple pot, to help her feel better."
Each unique gnome is hand crafted and has their own story to tell, which will be highlighted on the Gnomies Facebook page at each release. The next gnome has not yet been announced, but Lanning said to keep an eye on their Facebook page this Saturday for the next update.
The idea for a gnome exchange came to Regan while searching for community activities that would get residents engaged with the outdoors during Winter. At first she had expected children to play along, but putting her own spin on a city-wide scavenger hunt had brought both kids and adults out in search of the elusive statuettes. This year, she hopes to see even more engagement.
"I really would love to see teenagers get involved," said Lanning. "You know, they always complain that there's nothing to do in Weyburn. Well, go look for some gnomes! The weather is great, let's get outside!"
Aside from having even more gnomes to hide and seek this year, Lanning also created a special edition gnome in the vision of Weyburn's own master of fermentation: Medium Todd. This special edition gnome will come with perks if found, which can be claimed downtown at Big Jim's Brew Shop. Keep your eyes peeled for Roaming Gnomies in Weyburn, because the fun is just about to begin.