Zoë Douglas built this stick, grass, and moss fairy house in Kirkland, Washington, for the BDN Fairy House Challenge. "Her grandfather, Ron LaRochelle (who lives in Charlotte, Maine) told her about this awesome activity and she loved every minute of it," Zoë's mother Meg Douglas wrote. (Courtesy of Meg Douglas) Credit: Courtesy of Meg Douglas | Courtesy of Meg Douglas

A few weeks ago, the BDN invited readers to step outside, get creative and build fairy houses, which are small, whimsical dwellings made of natural materials and found objects. Despite the recent snow and wind storms, several people throughout Maine — and beyond — rose to the challenge.

Using their imaginations, readers of all ages — but especially children — gathered sticks, bark, acorns, pine needles and more to construct fairy houses of all shapes and sizes. Some even worked with snow and ice to get the job done.

The purpose of the challenge was to offer our readers a fun activity to do while staying at home during the COVID-19 pandemic. Fairy house building doesn’t require any special skills or materials. It’s an opportunity to spend time outdoors, observe the smaller things in nature and get your hands dirty.

No two fairy houses are the same, as the following collection of photos shows. I hope you enjoy viewing these images (and reading the captions) as much as I enjoyed receiving them. May they bring a smile to your face.

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Though the April 10 deadline for the friendly BDN Fairy House Challenge has passed, don’t let that stop you from participating. As spring gets into full swing and the warm weather draws you outside, consider engaging in this simple, stress-free activity. Your neighborhood fairies will thank you for it.

If you’d like to share your fairy house photos with a BDN writer who is currently working from home and truly appreciates these fantastical creations, email Aislinn Sarnacki at asarnacki@bangordailynews.com. Follow her on Twitter: @1minhikegirl, and Instagram: @actoutdoors.

Aislinn Sarnacki is a Maine outdoors writer and the author of three Maine hiking guidebooks including “Family Friendly Hikes in Maine.” Find her on Twitter and Facebook @1minhikegirl. You can also...