Executive Director, Joanne Dalton says that game play begins on Thursday, February 1 and continues until the end of the day on holiday Monday, February 19.
When it comes to the game itself, Dalton says it’s pretty simple.
“It sounds complicated when you talk about all the different things going on, but really, we're going to send you to a location in the community, or to some coordinates in the community, for those businesses who don't want foot traffic, and you're going to find our activity poster which is going to tell you exactly what to do. We don't give away those hints ahead of time, but once you find that poster, you complete the activity and you're entered to win just like that.”
Dalton says in total there will be 25 different activities to complete, with 23 local businesses hosting something at their business or at a location in Steinbach. Then when players complete that task, they get an entry to win a prize.
“So, your game flyer is your key to completing the activities. You can print them off on our website as of February 1st or you can visit one of these participating locations if you're like at any of these locations. You can find all of them (businesses) on our website as well, and you can pick up your flyers in person at SFRC.”
When it comes to the scavenger hunt and how it was created, Dalton notes they had some help.
"This year, we've partnered up with the Puzzler Escape Rooms, who have been incredible. He's really elevated some of these games. So, we have 5 separate games, five businesses in each game. One of them is like, eliminate the suspect, kind of find the culprit game where you actually have to go around to each of our businesses and get a clue to what your suspect looks like or what car he drives or, you know, how tall he is, and then figure out from your suspect wall which one is the code that you need.”
Dalton says players will find the games are very creative this year.
“One of our games is 100% at the Jake Epp Library. So, if you have trouble getting around, you can just show up there. You can complete all five of those activities in one day. Some of them require a little bit more transportation. Our “Special Delivery” will see you actually delivering packages from business to business to get your answers. So, it's just so creative, so much fun. And there are so many different ways to play, and we think there's something for everyone.”
Dalton adds that this game is for families or couples or singles looking for something to do during the winter months.
“February is one of the darkest, coldest months, well, maybe not this year. But sometimes it can be one of the hardest months of the year, especially for families with young kids, having a hard time getting out of the house, having a hard time playing outside. So, this gives them something to do. It really showcases how much of a community that we have here, with all of these businesses working together to make this event really spectacular.”
The SFRC Director says, all monies raised from local businesses sponsoring the Scavenger Hunt goes right back to the Steinbach Family Resource Centre.
"That money goes towards the things that are really the hardest for us to raise funds, like the facilitator costs, our program fees, the building costs, things like that. So, the game is 100% free to play, and then any other donations that we receive on top of that, go right back to the families, to access programs and education and support. So, it really is a win-win for everyone.”
Dalton continues and says they have expanded the game and are involving businesses in La Broquerie and Blumenort as well as Steinbach.
She notes, their list of prizes is also on the game card.
“We have some incredible prizes this year, Our Village - Community Scavenger Hunt is going to be a ton of fun. Our grand prize this year is a $1,400 custom vacation package to Brereton Lake Resort, to which we added all kinds of stuff, so the value is more like over $2,500. And, then we've got five more game prizes, so those ones range anywhere from $750 to $1000 in value. And then if you watch our social media, we're gonna have more giveaways. So, like, there's just no end to the winning.”
Dalton says they have prize donations from many local businesses, who then also have a ‘spot’ on their Scavenger Hunt calendar. For those wishing to play along, she says they need to pick up a game card, which is free, thanks to their generous sponsors.
Dalton says, this game also brings awareness to the Steinbach Family Resource Centre who are then able to help more families in the southeast.
“The more people participate, the farther our reach, and the more people learn about what we do for families and how they can access these essential supports the better it is for everyone.”
So, when does game play begin? Dalton says some people start and finish on the first day.
“They book the day off work and hit the ground running. They are the first business when it opens at 7am and play until the last one closes at 10pm, and they get the whole thing done. They've got it planned out. It's really neat to see.”
Dalton says anyone with questions about the game is welcome to call the centre.
“We get lots of calls. We get lots of people who are like, I'm not quite sure how to do this one, or what does it mean to find a GPS coordinate, how do I do that? So, those are some of the questions that we love to get because it means people are interested. We had 1,101 entries last year. This year we have printed 5,000 Flyers. They're everywhere. We expect to see a lot more participation.”
The Village - Community Scavenger Hunt begins on Thursday, February 1st and runs until the end of the day on Monday, February 19th, with the grand prize draws taking place on Tuesday, February 20.
“So, we have 19 days of all kinds of activities. We're going to be all over the community. We have 23 businesses who are getting involved this year, so we're very excited to see it grow and become a real community wide event.”