Activities & Games
Get Active with Geocaching Hot
Geocaching is the world’s largest scavenger hunt – but it can also be adapted for your community’s property.
Using GPS devices or their mobile phones, geocachers navigate to specific coordinates to find boxes of hidden treasures. When they take something out of the hidden box they also have to put something in. To adapt this activity to your community the treasure boxes can be located on the property, or in nearby public parks or recreational areas.
If you don’t mind inviting the general public onto your property as well you can also register the GPS coordinates of your cache in online databases and welcome visitors to the property when they occasionally arrive to hunt down your property’s boxes.
The activity can be adapted to all ages of children and adults and is a great weekend activity for families.
What makes geocaching unique is that it can be done at your resident’s leisure. It actually works best if it’s not attempted by everyone at once so that the hiding spots of the caches stay fairly secret.
Be sure to hide the boxes in well covered areas safe from the elements and really make your resident’s hunt for them – you don’t want them to be out in the open and easy to find! Include a variety of prizes and treasures for all ages.
Creating the caches
Assemble small sealable plastic containers. Include three or four small inexpensive treasures in the box. You may also want to include a guest book for residents to sign off on after visiting the boxes.
Image search: Pixabay
Sample “treasure” ideas include:
• Magnets using flat-backed glass marbles
• Polymer clay personalized geocaching coin
• A pen or pencil wrapped in a decorative clay design.
• Thrifty dollar store ideas that will be enjoyed by kids or adults like; a deck of cards, a calculator, a rain poncho, a keychain, or a miniature flashlight.
• Scour thrift stores or yard sales for small stuffed animals, kitschy knickknacks, paperback books and other one-of-a-kind goodies
• A compass that attaches to a zipper pull.
• Cafepress stickers, buttons, magnets and other smaller goodies.
• Oriental Trading Company's red light-up lanyards, 3-in-1 whistles, or compass and light keychains
• Any other small and fun goodies that won’t break the bank!
Hiding the Caches
1. The best way to approach this activity is to create the caches and place them strategically around the property.
2. Once hidden you can announce that the boxes are ready to be searched out.
3. Create a list of the GPS coordinates and send them out to residents.
4. Remind residents that if and when they take a treasure they need to leave one of equal or greater value as well.
5. Include a list of suggested treasure ideas - like fun dollar store items - for residents to add to the boxes once found.
*TIP* This event works best on larger properties but even if you have a small property you can encourage residents to get out and active by expanding the range and hiding cache’s at nearby parks and playgrounds. In fact, this event could be a great opportunity for partnership marketing with local businesses!
Image source: Pixabay
Be sure to encourage your residents to follow the universal rules for safe fun geocaching, and you can also suggest that they register themselves with Geocaching.com.
*BONUS* You can award certificates of participation to those who find all of your property’s boxes. You may also want to consider holding a special drawing for all the families and residents who find all of the boxes each month. Award a special prize to one winner.