Time magazine featured a story on how teddy bear hunts are uniting neighborhoods as people stay home during the coronavirus pandemic. The kids and I have been taking daily walks and noticed that while a few houses had plush animals in their windows, most did not.
I realized that many probably didn't know about the sweet scavenger hunt, so we decided to take matters into our own hands and spread the word.
I created a simple flyer explaining the concept and inviting neighbors to put bears in their windows. We then taped the flyers for the bear hunt to people's mailboxes (putting the tape on the paper first meant we didn't have to touch a single mailbox.)
Two days later, we went for another walk.
On the walk we spotted sixty bears and other plush in windows, near trees and perched in front yards. Every time we would see one, we'd yell, “There's a bear! There's a bear!” It became a game of who could find the bears first.
We also marveled at people's creativity. One person had a bear set out in a chair with a bucket of suckers. Another house had four care bears displayed, one in each window. Another created a picnic with elephant and piggy.
At one point, I teared up a bit. Each of these people had read a flyer inviting them to join in some fun for neighborhood kids, and they took the time to say yes. The collective community action was beautiful to witness. I know these bear hunts will be a memory we will always have from this period of being safer at home.
To start your own neighborhood bear hunt
Download these flyers and print them (I set my printer to print 4 to a page, which made them the perfect size to attach to mailboxes)
Distribute the flyers
Consider also posting on Nextdoor or Facebook
Go on a bear hunt!
I hope this little printable helps you spread cheer in your own community. We have loved discovering bears on our nightly walks.