A “CRAZY” weekend comes to a close
A great turnout of cachers invaded Buchanan County for the Iowa Geocacher’s Organization’s annual HIKE N SEEK on the weekend of September 20th through the 23rd. The weather was perfect, and the caching was “CRAZY”.
The weekend started on Friday at noon, with a meet and greet at the Pizza Ranch in Independence hosted by CCWelch. A nice sized crowd was on hand to get an early start to the festivities. Lots of geo-chatter to go around as friends were able to get caught up on everyone had spent their summers.
After we filled our tummys, it was off to the Geo-Mobile car show hosted by the IGO and Dodgecardoc. The number of entries was small, but the quality of the vehicles was not. From satellite dishes and giant cans of bug spray, to flashing lights, blinking eyes, and a soundtrack that fit very well to the weekend’s theme, the car show was a fun event and has high hopes to grow into an annual HNS event.
The last event Friday evening was the annual meet and greet and live meeting of the IGO Board of Directors. The event was held at Bill’s Smokehouse and Pizza in Independence. Prior to the start of the event, the board gathered to elect the Executive Board. We are pleased to announce the E-board remains the same as last year. (President BJCheryl (BJ), Vice President Digger9 (Jim), Secretary Hill folk (Twila), and Treasurer 24Hawki (Liz).) After the business was complete we were able to visit with all the cachers that packed the room. The event concluded with the board meeting.
Saturday morning brought the official start to Hike N Seek 2013. As everyone gathered at the Mill Shelter in beautiful Fontana Park, they were greeted with many things to see and do. The IGO store was on hand for folks to get all their IGO branded goodies. An IGO information booth was set up to answer any questions, and you could even pre-order the new IGO t-shirts and sweatshirts. A great group of volunteers were loading GPS units so people could go find the 90+ new caches placed for the event. If you wanted fresh air, visiting the animals nearby was just the ticket.
After a few announcements about the competition, the score books were handed out, and everyone was on their way. There were lots of choices on how you wanted to spend your day. Casual caching to “CRAZY” caching, or maybe see what the community had to offer by attending the events at the Mental Health Institute, The Wapsi Mill, or the Indee Train depot. You could even take in the farmer’s market, or arts and craft displays in the downtown area.
As the day wound down, a trackable and trading event was held back in Fontana Park which wrapped up just before the potluck. After all the competitors turned in their scorebooks, it was time for food and fellowship, a nice meal and lots of stories about the day’s adventures. Door prize drawings and a group photo brought the evening to a close.
Sunday morning brought everyone back to the park for a pancake breakfast, IGO fundraiser hosted by Hill Folk. More great food and fellowship, then off to the CITO event hosted by Birgenfamily. This gave us a chance to do a little clean up after playing in the park all weekend. The last event on the schedule for Sunday was the awards for the weekend’s competitions. Awards for the car show went to Dazedandconfused, and Dodgecardoc.
As in years past, the event hosts set the rules, and runs the competition their own way, not the IGO. The main Hike N Seek competition had some new wrinkles in it to try and make it “CRAZY” and interesting. It was posted on the event page that this year’s winner may not even be the person that finds the most caches. With all the neat events on Saturday, they wanted the people that spent time at those to still have a chance to compete. So scoring for this year went as follows. Points for each cache you found were determined by “Difficulty times Terrain times 10” to get your base points. For each of the four events you attended you were able to roll the dice with a possible score of zero to ninety nine points. “CRAZY” points were determined by the roll of a four sided die. The numbers 1 through 4 corresponded with an event. Whichever number you rolled, you multiplied that event score by 100. There was some confusion as to how the totals were reached, and the board has noted those concerns, and will make changes to avoid those issues in the future. By the formula used this year the winners were: Teams - 3rd LookitupDKGC, 2nd Mole275, 1st J,K, &A Higgenbotham, Youth - 3rd Angel-girl, 2nd nin-jon-go, 1st Lil wings, Open - 3rd cheetohman79, 2nd Nascar Joe, 1st Borky00. CONGRATULATIONS to the winners. See BJ’s story for a list of all the final scores.
The weekend closed with a breakfast event Monday morning for the folks that hung around an extra day. The event was hosted by CCWelch, and held at the McDonalds in Independence.
As we put a close to Hike N Seek 2013, and look forward to Hike N Seek 2014, oh yeah, did I mention that next year we are heading to Spirit Lake, and the Okoboji area, we want to say a few thank yous. Thank you, CCWelch and Welch for being our hosts for the weekend. Almost everyone I personally talked to had a great time, and it is because of all the work you put into it that made this a great weekend. Thanks to the folks that hosted a side event, Dodgecardoc, Birgenfamily, Hill Folk, and the IGO, with the help of their hosts, Dazedandconfused at the Depot, and Borky00 at the Mill. Borky had some helpers take shifts manning the log book as well. Thanks to Borky00, IAMedic08, sybilnme, geomeeple, DLR1451, Stridget, LJ Silver, and Iowa Pete for taking a turn so others could enjoy the day.
An event of this size takes a lot of time and effort, and a little funding and supplies are needed as well. We want to say a huge thank you to all the sponsors. The Iowa Geocachers Organization, Pathtags.com, the city of Independence, Morwood Campground, Mail House Inc, Welch Rabbitry, Dan Phelps ink, Cache Addict, and Wood Brass and Glass. The contributions of these folks helped make this event the success it was.
To everyone that hid caches, Bigbrotherbear, IaPete, J.S.K., JKRacing, Temacon, Birgenfamily, Seam Smiley, Welch, and CCWelch. Without your efforts, we would not have had anything to find. Thank you for getting out there and placing those containers.
But most of all we want to thank all of the folks that came and spent their weekend with us. We enjoy putting this event on every year, and hope that you all enjoy spending time with us. Thank you for your kind words, your purchases in the store, your competitive edge, your laid back event hopping, and most of all the time you spent visiting with us. It is your feedback that makes YOUR organization, the IGO, work. THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!
As I mentioned before, keep an eye on the website and Facebook for details on the Spirit Lake Massacre, HIKE N SEEK 2014.