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Hamilton Players host team-based scavenger hunt fundraiser
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Hamilton Players host team-based scavenger hunt fundraiser

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Hamilton Players is hosting “The Great Scavenger Hunt” that encourages creativity and teamwork Nov. 2-8, with team activities to begin upon registration.

Executive Director Denise Rose said she was inspired by the Greatest International Scavenger Hunt (GISH) to create a fundraiser that was pandemic and quarantine friendly, fun and creative.

“This scavenger hunt is not your typical ‘seek and find’ scavenger hunt,” Rose said. “This scavenger hunt is about creativity and problem solving and thinking outside the box.”

How it works is that teams of four compete to finish as many challenges on the game list as possible, accruing points along the way.

“The Great Scavenger Hunt” has four categories of challenges: theater/Hamilton Players themed challenges, general challenges, donation challenges and pay-it-forward challenges. The challenges are to design, create, build, fashion, or recreate something based on or built out of something specific. Some entries call for still images and others for videos.

“There are a lot of opportunities to think outside the box and let your imagination run wild,” Rose said. “There are plenty of challenges in each category, so teams do not have to be ‘Hamilton Players’ even live in Hamilton to participate or succeed. While it is a fundraiser for us, I want it to be a good time for everyone. It is designed to be a FUN-raiser.”

Online play means that teams/team members do not have to be in Hamilton to compete. Most of the challenges can be completed from anywhere, although it is helpful to have at least one team member near Hamilton.

Step one is to create a team with various talents, skills and creativity. Then enroll your team online at a cost of $40 per team at www.hamiltonplayers.tix.com. The team “captain” signs the team up and does all correspondence for the team including submitting all scavenger hunt items in the correct format to boxoffice@hamiltonplayers.com.

Before the game even begins teams can earn pre-game points by participating in challenges that are announced each Friday. As of Oct. 12, nine teams have been completing challenges and earning points.

“So the sooner a team enrolls, the better,” Rose said. “The first pre-game challenge was, ‘to select a team name and create a 30-second video PSA that represents your team speaking in support of the arts, locally.’”

“The Weird Sisters” team member Courtney Neuschwander said the scavenger hunt is already fun.

“Early challenges have had us literally inside the box as we had to make and perform as stick puppets,” Neuschwander said. “We built a tiny stage and stick puppets and made a little PSA that lasted closer to 45-seconds because as it turns out it is really hard to say something in 30-seconds.”

Neuschwander said she hopes her team wins.

“But there are some great teams participating in the scavenger hunt and we won't have a good sense of who is in the lead until the official challenges drop in the beginning of November,” she said. “It will be really interesting. I know Denise has a lot of different challenges that will appeal to a broad range of skill-sets and individual talents. I think there will be a lot of variety in the results we get.”

Mara Luther, Tasha Fain and Kay Ownbey, members of the Trouba-Daba-Doos scavenger team, said they enjoy participating in the weekly warm-ups to the big hunt.

“I like that there are time constraints because that means we have to be really creative,” Luther said. “We don't get to make it perfect, we just have to throw together what we've got. That's really fun.”

Fain said she’s enjoying the creative process.

“Someone throws out an idea and we run with it,” she said. “People offer suggestions or tweaks and we keep the creative juices flowing until we have a final product. Also, because we haven't been on stage with each other in half a year and haven't really seen each other, we're all going a little stir crazy. It's been fun to work together again and come up with wacky, fun ideas.”

Ownbey said that the creativity has no limits.  

“You get a prompt and it says one thing, but every team can come up with something completely different,” she said. “It just shows that there are a lot of different types of creative people in the community.”

On Nov. 2 at 9 a.m. team captains will receive the official scavenger hunt list via email and the game begins.

“Teams will have one week to complete as many of the tasks on the list as possible in the most creative ways imaginable,” Rose said. “Each team can then complete as many, or as few, challenges as they want and the team with the highest overall score is the winner.”

All entries must be clean and inoffensive, no nudity, foul language, or violence.

“I've been telling teams to encourage their friends to create their own teams to enter into a little friendly competition. Who's got what it takes to be Scavenger Hunt royalty?” Rose asked. “Winners receive epic bragging rights, a very small cash prize, a 2021 season ticket and their names will be immortalized as the first winners on a ‘Winners List’ plaque that will live on the lobby wall of the playhouse.”

“The Great Hamilton Players Scavenger Hunt FUNdrasier” will be an annual event and each year the winners will be added to the wall plaque. Selected entries from each team will be showcased in a video presentation posted online.

The hunt lasts one week; from Nov. 2 at 9 a.m. to Nov. 8 just before noon.

“It's going to be a lot of fun,” Rose said.

Another fundraising opportunity at the Hamilton Playhouse is the costume and vintage sale only the week before Halloween. Beginning Oct. 26, buy vintage costumes, coats, wigs, hats and accessories. Wearing masks and maintaining social distancing are required.

In November the Hamilton Players will host a curated used book sale with an eclectic mix of fiction/nonfiction, popular/vintage and fun/collectible books perfect for the book lover, book collector and gift-giving.

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