Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole. ~Roger Caras
It’s funny, this is my first year not planning for Kyle’s Halloween costume. I guess once you hit twelve years old and are in the seventh grade, kiss trick-or-treating goodbye, as well as all the candy. I’ve always looked forward to this time of year with Kyle, but my little man is maturing. Well, as much as a Piper can.
What fills this void? A Doggie in Disguise Scavenger Hunt of course. Yes, Thrill of the Hunt hosted the first ever Doggie in Disguise Scavenger Hunt in Latrobe, Pennsylvania. What exactly does this mean? No, the dogs were not expected to find items but they did dress up in disguise, walked alongside their owners and joined in on an adventure throughout the city of Latrobe.
This event was a laid back and easy going scavenger hunt, an activity for dogs, their owners and the whole family to enjoy. After all, The Piper Corporation does encourage family fun and togetherness, building and reinforcing the bonds of the family. The participants were given clues and riddles to find out which store in downtown Latrobe they needed to stop by. As I’ve always said, part of my scavenger hunt strategy is to encourage foot traffic directly to specific participating local stores and shops to reinforce branding and to give them an advertising opportunity. I want to help local merchants and the communities alike.
Once the Thrill Seekers (those who participate in a Thrill of the Hunt scavenger hunt) arrived at a correct location, the participants collected dog toys and treats with each stop. This particular scavenger hunt contained a total of seven missions and online challenges, an increase from past scavenger hunts. I might just add a few more stops to next year’s Doggie in Disguise Scavenger Hunt, extending the fun even more! Everyone was also asked to conduct online challenges that included taking pictures and video of them with their dog at specific locations, making the event more thought provoking and interactive.
What makes this scavenger hunt so much fun and just plain hilarious? The dog costumes! Yes, the dogs were dressed in their Halloween best! When everyone finished finding their clues we gathered at the finish line, which happened to be the Family Video parking lot. There, our non-bias outsider, John was present to judge the costumes, picking a winner.
Congratulations Molly, Super-girl won!
I will admit, that was the best part of the scavenger hunt! Some of the costumes totally cracked me up! There was a turtle, batman and joker, a witch and Elvis, among other very creative costumes. In fact, one family told me since their daughter was too old for trick-or-treaing, they thought they would dress up the family dogs and take them out. Perfect idea!
Prior to planning the event, I worked with Darlene Smucker from the B & D Activity Center in Latrobe. She owns a huge indoor dog facility that she brings in vets, hosts competitions and dog training sessions, among other 4-legged activities. Perfect start location. Both parties, B & D Activity Center and Family Video graciously let us use their space for the morning. I also worked with Nick from the City of Latrobe to coordinate this scavenger hunt on the day of Latrobe’s Autumn Fest.
Everything certainly came together nicely. God even blessed us with a nice brisk sunny day, perfect for walking around in the fall air, among the multicolored foliage of Latrobe.
Since the completion of the scavenger hunt, the Action for Animals Humane Society in Latrobe contacted me about maybe joining efforts to create one big event to benefit both parties. I think that would be a great idea! I’m totally game! My friend Tree actually suggested the same thing earlier this year, but it looks like it might happen for the next annual Doggie in Disguise Scavenger Hunt.
I’ve been working on Thrill of the Hunt full time for nearly six months now. And as I’ve been developing and administering to these hosted scavenger hunt events, I thought how I could give back, making my scavenger hunts even more community friendly? Eventually, when our popularity and participation increases, I will have the resources to donate a portion of the proceeds back to local charities, with respect to the themed scavenger hunt. Another goal I would be happy to fulfill.
My buddy, Kyle joined in administering to Saturday’s Doggie in Disguise Scavenger Hunt. Even Aunt Nikki made her appearance with Avery (a.k.a. Acron) wearing her angel wings, just as the judging was to begin.
I really truly can’t wait for next year! It’ll be even better!
On a side note, I want to give my friend Holly a big shout out! She not only walked around with me passing out flyers for the Doggie in Disguise Scavenger Hunt but she also was my biggest cheerleader with her fellow dog friends, spreading the word on our event and building the excitement! If she ever wants to quit nursing, she has a job with me in marketing and event planning. Thanks Holsters!
Check out all the pictures on the Thrill of the Hunt Gallery Page, the Facebook Page, the Pinterest Page, as well as the videos on the Youtube Channel. Please support our local start-up company and Like US and Follow Us! Remember, everyone needs to … Experience the Game!