People Behind The Events You Love: Leap Day Frog Hunt

People Behind The Events You Love is an occasional series highlighting the work we do to make events happen. In this story, Candice Benjes-Small, Head of Research, and Jessica Ramey, Instruction and Research Librarian, discuss the Leap Day Frog Hunt on February 29, 2024.

Candice and Jessica pose with a small gree frog plushieWhat was the Leap Day Frog Hunt? Why did we decide to participate?
We were looking for a light-hearted activity to celebrate leap day, February 29. Candice saw on social media a public librarian explaining the scavenger hunt she was planning. In that version, paper flyers with frog images were hidden throughout the library, with each frog providing part of an answer to a riddle; people who completed the answer received a small prize.  While exploring prizes we might give out for such an activity, we found the stuffed frogs. Jessica suggested it would be simpler to skip the riddle and just hide the frogs throughout the building.

How did the event unfold?
We had a student worker hide frogs on the second and third floors of Swem Library the night prior, while we placed them around the ground and first floors on the morning of February 29th. Sara Belmont, Assistant Director of Library Communications, Web and Design, and student employee Jenna Massey created an adorable graphic advertising the event on Instagram and Facebook. We also posted a sign at the entry to Swem.

We originally hid 29 frogs in honor of the date, but within an hour of the event’s opening, all of them had been taken. We then hid additional frogs at various times throughout the day. By late afternoon, our supply of frogs had run out.

Green plush frog wearing a green t-shirt with the W&M Libraries logo
One of the Leap Day frogs, wearing a W&M Libraries t-shirt

What was the best part of the event?
We had no idea if the students would want the frogs, but judging by how quickly they disappeared, the chatter on social media, and reports from library employees who were asked again and again about the frogs - the students indeed wanted them. We think students really enjoyed the search, too. The end of February is a stressful time of the semester and we’re so glad we could add some fun to the day.

What future plans do you have?
Well, we don’t have a Leap Day for another 4 years! But we’re already brainstorming other celebrations which could involve finding stuffed animals - our supply catalog is full of other variations!