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3 Styles of Scavenger Hunts

Boy is it hot outside! If you are like me you may still be looking for indoor activities that are fun for your residents to do. This activity that I will share with you can be done for different levels of care in your retirement community. I encourage you to share it with the other activity professionals that work in those other areas within your own community.

The activity is the Scavenge Hunt. This can be done in three different ways and I will describe them below:

1)      The Stay Seated Scavenger Hunt
v  Ask audience to bring in items they think will be asked for. Encourage them to fill their purses, pockets, bags, etc. and bring it to the event
v  Make a list of items that they could bring with them
v  Include items that would be funny, that might have a story to go with them, or that people would be surprised someone would actually have. (Green Stamps anyone?)
v  See the list I used
v  Cut the list into pieces and place them into a basket
v  Ask people to draw the item out of the basket. (This gets more people involved, even if they never have an item on your list, they are participating…..)
v  Use the resident’s names as often as possible.
v  Teams can be seated at a table or divide your auditorium or meeting room into sections
v  After reading the item out loud, give people time to find the item – but not much time. Keep it moving!
v  Count all the items and record them. I had an assistant help with this buy using a dry erase board.
v  Prizes or no prizes…. It’s up to you.

2)      The Semi-Seated Scavenger Hunt
v  Same as above, but have each team bring the item back to the team’s table, which is at the front of the room
v  You can do this with a captain who gets it from his team, or do not have a captain and each person brings their own item up to the table
v  Make sure that all the items are returned after the program is over

3)      A Serious Scavenger Hunt
v  Look around your community and make a list of items that are unique to your community
v  Include items on the list that are specific so that there is no confusion
v  Gather the participants and give them the list of items that you want them to find
v  Give participants a deadline to return the items to you
v  This event can be done over a few days, or in a few hours
v  Bringing back the items can mean taking a picture of them on your smart phone or tablet (with or without the resident in the photo with it), a note on the list of where they located the item, or asking them to return a sticker that is next to the item on the list. 
v  Make the prize something special so that people are more serious about playing the game independently.
v  This game can be played individually or as a team
v  Items can be inside or outside.

Here are a few websites that have Scavenger Hunt ideas that take you beyond what I’ve used with seniors before:

And here are some books from Amazon:

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