‘Bear hunts’ bringing neighborhoods together while social distancing

'Bear hunts' bringing neighborhoods together while social distancing

STONE COUNTY, Miss. (WLOX) - It’s a movement that began on Facebook and is quickly picking up steam across the country, including in South Mississippi.

People are putting teddy bears up in their windows and outside their home to give little ones a little fun during this time of social distancing.

The children are encouraged to try and spot the bears while they are out walking with their parents.

Local mom Janae Smith, who organized the bear hunt on Facebook, said she was looking for something for her children to do that would get them out of the house yet still allow them maintain a safe distance from others. Now, her efforts have taken off.

Bears can be seen in the windows of homes, storefronts, and front yards throughout Stone County.

"You drive through town and it’s so exciting to see the kids’ eyes light up when they see another bear,” said Smith. “It’s just a feel-good thing, something to kind of fill their day up with.”

“All the kids are still quarantined inside and we’re out of school and we’re just struggling to fill the day up with things, I guess."

Local businesses have even gotten in on the movement.

Meet Mr. Bair E. Cheesy! 🐻 🍕

Posted by Pizza Inn on Wednesday, 25 March 2020

"We’re excited to be a part of this and it’s a great community event,” said Bill Prout, who owns Pizza Inn.

Stone County isn’t the only place in South Mississippi that getting in on the bear hunting fun. Neighborhoods in Ocean Springs, Long Beach, and D’Iberville also are encouraging their neighbors to play the game.

Looking for something to get the kids out of the house yet practice social distancing? Take them on a “Bear Hunt!”...

Posted by Dolce Bakeshop on Monday, 23 March 2020

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