Map out plans to find treasure

Families and individuals are invited to a day of adventure that might just lead to treasure.

Engage Columbus, an organization created to help all people feel welcome and connected in the community, will sponsor the Alphabet Treasure Hunt on June 4, which also is the first day of the summer Downtown Farmers Market in downtown Columbus.

Between 9 and 11:30 a.m. that day, participating teams will pick up a Treasure Hunt package at the Engage Columbus booth at the market, located in the Cummins parking lot near Fifth and Jackson streets.

The package will contain clues to finding specific architectural elements at different locations that correspond with the alphabet letters they have received, event coordinator Laura Hodson said.

“You might get a clue that says something like ‘Go forth and find me between a president and a statesman,’” Hodson said.

When the team locates the correct architectural feature, they should take a downloadable photograph of it with at least one of their members in the picture, Hodson said.

“Be creative when taking pictures, as there is a special prize,” Hodson said.

Those who get struck can obtain more specific clues by answering a challenge question at the WellConnect office at 237 Washington St.

Unlike a scavenger hunt, there is no prize for finishing first because the object of the game is to instill a new appreciation of the city’s unique or historic architecture, Hodson said.

“We don’t want people rushing through it,” she said. “It’s designed to open eyes to treasures we walk past every day.”

Once a team completes all letters, members should go to the Engage Columbus office at 431 Sixth St., allow a volunteer to transfer their photos and sign out.

All who complete the game will be invited to a 5 p.m. party with barbecue and live music, where the names of finishing teams will be randomly drawn to win prizes that include:

Multiple rounds of play at both Otter Creek and Greenbelt golf courses.

A night’s stay at the Inn at Irwin Gardens.

Ultimate car wash packages from Crew Car Wash

The Alphabet Treasure Hunt, part of the Engage Columbus Love Where You Live Challenge, is the brainchild of local artist Marilyn Brackney, Hodson said.

Brackney was inspired by the “Do You Know Columbus?” photograph contests that debuted in The Republic during the mid 1990s, Hodson said. In those contests, readers were challenged to identify close-up or abstract views of architectural elements in Columbus.

How to sign up

There are two ways for teams to sign up for the Alphabet Treasure Hunt on June 4.

  • Register in advance online at engagecolumbus.com
  • Register on site at the Engage Columbus booth at the summer Downtown Farmers Market, located in the Cummins parking lot near Fifth and Jackson streets.

Either way, a team representative must pick up a Treasure Hunt package at the booth between 9 and 11:30 a.m. on June 4.

Information: Call 812-375-0708 weekdays, or 812-565-8165 the day of the event.

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Mark Webber is a reporter for The Republic. He can be reached at mwebber@therepublic.com or 812-379-5636.