Residents from all around the Vernon and Beauregard Parishes are invited to participate in an Inspirational Rock painting contest.

To enter the contest, paint a rock and then write artist’s name and city on the back of the rock in permanent ink.

The idea behind the contest is to beautify the area with vibrant colors, and beautiful artwork done by the area locals, said project leader, Tina Rollins Cormier, of DeRidder. Normally little painted rocks are hidden around towns and neighborhoods as decorations, by anyone who wants to participate.

Out of all submissions, Cormier will select five winning rocks from each participating town. First place rocks will win an Origami Owl Locket value $75.00. Second place rocks will receive a $20 gift certificate for Origami Owl items.

There is, however, a secondary aspect to this Inspirational Rock painting project. First and second place rocks will also be sent to First Lieutenant Joel Hargrave (US Army), who is serving in Afghanistan.

“Everyone has asked, ‘What can I send you? What do you need?’ to which I replied, ‘Nothing, thank you.’ However, now is your chance to send me something we need and want,” said Hargrave. “Kuwait is hot, sandy, dull and brown. In an attempt to brighten the lives of soldiers (and ourselves), we are creating a rock garden. We're asking that everyone send us a colorful rock. We need all colors, sizes, and shapes. You can paint them or not, add your name, location; whatever you want.”

To send Inspiration Rocks directly to Hargrave, mail them to 1LT Joe Hargrave BTMC 86CSH, Camp Buehring, APO, AE 09330.

In order to be eligible to win Origami Owl prizes, all rocks must be entered by August 25th.

Rocks which Cormier does not ship to Kuwait will eventually be placed in a local rock garden, which is still in the works, she said. Any remaining rocks which do not find their way into the rock garden, will be distributed around the area, to continue the original project.

To enter the contest contact Tina Rollins Cormier 337-550-5065.