TORONTO -- On a grey day, there’s no missing the long and colourful line of painted rocks that stretches along the boardwalk on Kew Beach. 

“It’s a snake made out of rocks,” is how Lucas Walker describes it—and he should know. The 7-year-old started it last week, an idea born from boredom. 

“He’s just been stuck in the house with the pandemic and everything going on,” Lucas’s father Nick told CTV News Toronto. “He came up with an idea to get his mom and his brother and some of his friends involved.”

The snake started simply: with just four rocks and a hand painted sign. The sign reads, “I’m just a rock snake, here to make you smile. Paint a rock, add it to my body, help me grow a mile.”

And grow is something the rock snake hasn’t stopped doing. Dozens and dozens of brightly coloured rocks now line the boardwalk at the foot of Lee Avenue. 

Surveying the ever-expanding snake, Lucas exclaims, “I feel it’s like awesome!”

Even on a rainy afternoon, the rock snake stops those passing by. 

Some look, others take photos. The rock snake has its own Instagram account featuring photos of the rocks people have left. Several kids arrive with painted rocks to add, and just about everyone who notices it smiles. 

“The people over there, it’s bringing joy to them,” Lucas says. His father agrees. “Everyone likes to see art, everyone likes to smile and I think it’s good for the community too.”

Lucas says he’s excited to watch his pandemic project grow, one rock, and one smile at a time.