Next Full Moon

Sunday, May 3rd Full Flower Moon

30 November 2008

You say it's YOUR birfday?

well, happy to you, too. Celebrated D_____'s 9th today.

9 years, 12 kids, 1 scavenger hunt. 3 hours on the bike (well, total time out anyway) setting this thing up. 1.5 hours total scavenging time. They literally ran the whole way. We had to jog and run to keep up.

My cue sheet:

0) Home clue- this was the 1st clue to familiarize them with the format and outline what was to come in terms of searching for: clues, stars (which I had attached to stuff with screws, so D could use his cool birfday leatherman and feel all badass), and scrabble letters (which were the letters of his name).
It referred them to the native plant garden several blocks from the house, and mentioned Native Crafts as well.
We split them up into Red Team and Green Team. Green won the intro question: 9x6=? and so got the clue to keep to themselves if they wanted. Of course they did, and wandered around our yard looking at whatever caught their eye until we talked them into sharing. The Red Team knew where the native garden is, and they were off and running. Literally.

1) Native Garden- Here they found the Ohlone tule reed housing sample D had made in Social Studies recently. It had 2 clues woven into it which referred to the 1st hidden star and 1st letter, and to the 2nd clue which was hidden in a dead Monterey Pine killed by pine beetle attack! This referred them further North and onto trails.

2) A Rubber Chicken- hanging from a tree containing the clue to look for it's tiny tiny tiny brother. Which marked the next star, and the 2nd letter, as well as a clue asking them if they were stumped. This was marked with an asterisk saying it was a riddle.

3)The Stump- another letter, and directions to play Guerilla Bocce (simply throwing the jack and bowling at it in the woods) with the winning team receiving the "secret clue" which (again) they could keep to themselves or share. Red won, and kept to themselves the clue; to head towards the bridges...

4) I waited until the older kids had rushed past and then dropped an empty/cleaned Proofide tin containing a further clue in the trail for a younger (think slower) kid to find. It told them to look on the small bridge for a clue, and the large bridge for a star.

5) Small Bridge- a Dia de Los Muertos Groom hanging from the bridge with a clue tied to him. I was surprised how quickly they found it, and by the screwball methods they attempted to retrieve it. Not logical people, these 4-11 year olds. His clue referred to his dead wife, and to remember the 1st clue in looking for her. She was in a dead Monterey Pine, and her clue referred them downhil towards the __R___ __SS__N. It took them pencil, paper, and a while to work out this was the CARMEL MISSION. ( After we called them back from running pell mell up a different hill...there was a lot of directionless, frantic running)

Large Bridge-the star was hidden under the hand railing, marked by a carven star in the bridge surface.

6) I dropped a bottle containing the clue that there was a star and a letter in that clearing. I was not sly enough; N saw me and so found it right off. The clue hidden behind the letter directed them to another game of Guerrilla Bocce and the now familiar secret clue with the now familiar selfishness. It had them looking in stumps for clues.

7) The next Large Stump-containing a bottled clue and a letter. "Take the next trail to the Left".

8) The next trail to the Left-led them to a star attached to a log,which had a trail marking arrow of branches pointing to a stump up slope with a clue sticking out the top. This directed them to take a downhill trail and look for a Smile.

9) A smiley face stuffed animal covering a clue to "keep keeping on" and a letter.

10) Keeping on until the T-intersection, where the trail marker arrow had a star attached signalling them to the Dolittle Trail.

11) At the Y-intersection they were left clueless. They opted to split up and Green went high while Red went low. Low they found a star and a clue ("NO!"). High they found a clue in a jar ("YES") telling them to head up to the meadow.

12) Meadow-Hidden in the lower back corner of the lone bench was a clue and a star. They had to play Bocce again and again get a secret clue.

13) The Chairs- at the top of the meadow are some chairs for sunset gazing. They found the lunchbox tied up in the Eucalyptus branches so quickly, I was very surprised. This clue directed them back home for the final clue...

14) The front gate-I'd attached a clue and the final star as they were leaving, and they found it upon returning. It asked where D would perch if he were a bird. He likes to hang out high (high- like 40feet up) in a redwood in the back yard, and from there he can see all around the neighborhood. While they were figuring out this is what the clue meant, I snuck out the front with the Treasure Chest and placed it on the roof of the truck.
D did not see it, so N went up the tree to help. They saw the Chest together, and climbed down to get it. I could hear N plotting how D should "lead everybody a different way so [she could] go get the chest..."
The treasure was their party favors, and then it was time for cake and yelling and running.

We are tired.


D____ G___ said...

still no comments on this one? Dang, I can't let this go without saying what a cool birthday to have- and 9 years old?? I'd like to have a scavenger hunt like that for *my* bday, and I'm, well, closer to 49 than I am to 9. Nice job.

reverend dick said...

Thanks. We did one out in East Garrison 3 years ago, with a pirate theme, that was out of this world cool. I went so far as to rhyme all the clues, and address them as "me hearties", and singed the edges of all th4e clues so they'd look old-timey. Outstanding.

We can arrange something for you next year...