Why not make the ordinary…extraordinary with a treasure hunt through the city. Involve your favorite businesses and landmarks to participate in celebrating the ones you love with clues and presents at every stop.
Ready. Get Set. Go.
So, you want to celebrate that special someone and make an ordinary birthday…extraordinary? Well, a Treasure Hunt through your city is the perfect plan. Not only will you involve everyone in the process of celebration, but you will create memories that will last a lifetime.
Got My Helpers in the Car
It is necessary to bring helpers for a successful Treasure Hunt or Scavenger Hunt. Plus, it makes it WAY MORE FUN! After my husband delivered all the clues all over town, Ashley was given her first clue and balloon. We attached a balloon to every clue so that store owners wouldn’t lose the clues and the girls could easily locate their clues upon arrival.
The girls had each other to help figure out the clues because nobody knew where they were going. Hey, that’s half the fun! Having the girls there to help solve the clues, take pictures, and laugh made it a perfect day.
Hint: it is a good idea to make sure the vehicle you will be driving is fully gassed up and ready to go (or at least provisions made for the expense), iPhones charged, and everyone has used the bathroom and had a snack. Make sure and also let your participants in the stores know about what time your hunters will be arriving so they can be on the lookout. Always check with the manager to get their approval. They are usually more than happy to play along.
ADD A LITTLE FUN
How about a little drama? Cue the music. Mission Impossible… Your mission, should you choose to accept it. Have Mission Impossible playing in the background as you present your birthday girl/guy with their balloon and first clue.
Clues (this will give you an idea of what you can do)
A Few of Her Favorite Things…
We had a blast giving Ashley all her favorite things in a very special way. There was so much we would have loved to give her for her twenty-first birthday, but the money was tight. The answer: give her an ordinary gift, but in an extraordinary way. She will never forget driving all over town with her sisters collecting her favorite things. Ultimately, she felt celebrated and we all got to play a part in it.
Coming up with clues was fun. First, we thought about all of her favorite things. Second, we found landmarks we knew she would recognize where she could collect her favorite things. Third, we commissioned fun people at each of those spots to present her with her gifts. Most loved participating. The librarian at the library was a little suspicious and anxious about us giving her a wrapped gift. She didn’t seem to understand the concept of a treasure hunt. But all in all, everyone participating enJOYed presenting Ash with her balloon, gift, and next clue.
Our Treasure Hunt Clue Answers
- Clue #1: McKay’s Used Books and Records to pick out a few records (for her final treasure…a record player)
- Clue #2: Trader Joe’s for Peanut Butter Cups and flowers (All the mates had a blast playing along! Such great people always work at Trader Joe’s).
- Clue #3: The Public Library (to pick up a new Lamplighter book…Ashley’s favorite! We give her one every year to build her library with great books.)
- Clue #4: The NOEL sign in Downtown Franklin (Ash’s middle name) and the Christmas tree.
- Clue #5: Mojo’s Tacos at the Factory at Franklin for Ash’s first “drink” as a 21-year-old.
A Note to Mom & Dad on Distributing Clues for the Treasure Hunt
Mom and Dad- make sure when dropping off your clues and balloons that you drop off the correct clue for the next place. For example, we presented Ash with Clue #1 at home. With this clue, we presented her with some cash for gas and a gift card to Starbucks. The clue was leading her to McKay’s Used Books and Records. At McKay’s, we dropped off a balloon tied to Clue #2 which told her what to do at McKay’s as well as directed her to her next location…Trader Joes. I only give this warning because with all the excitement, it is possible to look at Clue #2 and say, “Oh, that’s Trader Joe’s,” and accidentally drop off the clue there. Ask me how I know this. I almost did this when setting out the clues for my son’s Pirate Birthday Party treasure hunt. Just say’n.
The Final Treasure
Ash had been wanting a record player (a blast from our past). What better way to start her off than at a used record shop to choose a few favorites to start off her collection? Mom and Dad had fun looking through the old records. I had to purchase a few to give her at home with her player. Gotta love The Beach Boys, right dad? Let’s just say Grandpa had a heavy influence on this choice. As Ashley opened her gift and set it up, we all enJOYed dancing around the dining room to Surfing Safari. This is what it is all about.
Let’s Celebrate with Cake
While sister was out gathering her gifts, little brother helped contribute to the celebration by helping mom decorate the cheesecake. It’s all hands on deck around here when it comes to birthdays. The children all love celebrating each other. From decorating the dining room table with presents, homemade cards, the birthday banner, and each child’s favorite stuffed animals, to helping with the favorite birthday dinner and dessert, birthdays are a cause for celebration around here. This cheesecake is absolute perfection and Ashley’s choice year after year. With the berry coulis and fresh berries, it is a stunning presentation as well. If you are a cheesecake lover, this will be your go-to recipe…I promise.
Make the Ordinary…Extraordinary
It really doesn’t take more than a little effort to make the ordinary…extraordinary. With a little time, creativity, and a whole lot of fun, you can celebrate the people in your life and create memories that will last a lifetime. Children, especially, will remember when you have made an effort. After all, giving our children a sense of love and belonging is what being a family is all about. Blessings!