After weeks and months of planning, our groups annual picnic went off today without much of a hitch. I always try and come up with different ways to make the picnic a little more interesting and this year, I went with a photo scavenger hunt, which included some specific geocaches and other goofy things. There were a few issues (which included a screw up in one of the packets — my fault) and some over-thinking by me, too. I want to do this again as it was a blast — but I will do some tweaks.
The lists were pretty in-depth and the interpretations people did were wonderful. Before I get into the rest of the story about the event and what we did and such, allow me to post the video I made of all the photos that came in. There’s a few videos, too, which I really thought were fun. I even found some geocaching music to go along with the video.
As you saw (I hope), the cachers had to do some goofy things. People came back with smiles and seemed to have fun.
Now, for those who “competed,” it was a photo scavenger hunt and it was tailored to each caching group so as not to make people repeat finding things they’d already found. Alas, that also made it tough for out-of-towners, who don’t know the area as well. So I think next time I do this, I want to make sure that I have a situation where it’s a little more broad. The idea with that is there can still be a lot of caching (people can choose their own ways of going etc.) and still have all the silly ideas and goals that hey need to do. This way, they don’t have to concentrate on getting certain levels of points, either, as I’ll make everything the same point and randomly assign “bonus” points that they won’t know about, thus making it so they do their lists and then get certain points etc.
But that’s next time…
Before I speak about the event a little, I really have to thank the Devil Duckies — Peter and Judy — who did SO much behind the scenes. From getting the pavilion, to donating so many things, to giving me ideas and support to cooking, bringing the grill and making sure the garbage had a place to go, this event wouldn’t have gone off at all without them. Their work behind the scenes was an incredible part of this event, so many thanks to them!
Also, a thanks to Beth — monet37 — who helped with several ideas and such going into the event, came up with needed things and then helped with shuffling people, the food and the door prizes at the event.
The reality is, people might come up to me and tell me what they thought of the event, but any praise should be given to others as well as they did so much to make this event possible.
My only complaint this time was that it was so warm! A little cooler would have been better.
That being said, people did well on their lists. A few teams finished the lists, several came close and others did what they could. But, again, the purpose was fun (with a little competition thrown in).
The event started in Neahwa Park at about 9 a.m., with teams getting their packets and learning what they had to do. Then, they were sent off in search of photos and geocaches. They had about six hours or so to complete the tasks, and some people had to travel a little to do their list. In the end, it seemed like it worked out well, but I’ll have to definitely work on making it better so people can travel if they want, or stay in the Oneonta area, otherwise.
Some teams really had some good thoughts and ideas.
One of the challenges for one team was to go into a state park (which costs money) and find the caches there. What they did was avoid the cost by riding their bikes in. I had people needing to be put in a Landry mat dryer, shaking hands with a Wal-Mart employee, climing a fire tower, finding special geocaches, visiting covered bridges and so much more. After their day, they had to check in so I could go through their points etc. (That took a lot longer than I expected).
We had the first hangar at Fortin Park, which turned out to be real nice. There’s electric there and a lot of room. As people checked in, I grabbed their photos and checked off what they did. It’s at that point that I realized there needs to be bonus points and other things hidden in there so people might do extra and be awarded points they don’t know about. Also, a second person checking people in (or at least getting the photos on a jump drive) would be really beneficial. Next year!
We had some fantastic prizes for the winners and some good stuff for the door prizes.
It seems like those who attended hailed the event a success and that’s good. I will do it again and hope that it can continue to grow. I see many annual events have a “theme” or a “niche,” so maybe I’ve found ours. We did a true scavenger hunt in a state park two years ago for the event and it was a complete hit. So it seems we’re on to something. Therefore, I’ll continue the tradition for the fifth version of the event next year and see what kind of things I can put together.
Feel free to drop a comment or offer photo scavenger hunt ideas for next time. And let me know what you think about the video!
Hall of Fame Picnic on YouTube, click here.
Feel free to leave a comment, or e-mail P.J. at hoohaablog [at] gmail.com.