SALT LAKE COUNTY (ABC4) – The hunt for treasure will soon be back.
The buriers of the $10,000 Utah Treasure Hunt, which caught national headlines earlier this summer, announced the open registration for a family-friendly version of a multi-step treasure hunt.
“One of the most commonly asked questions of all the thousands of DMs we received during the last treasure was if we’d ever do one for kids,” David Cline explains to ABC4.
Knowing there was a large demand to get kids out and exploring before school starts in the fall, Cline and his partner, John Maxim, scrambled to put together a treasure hunt with multiple clues and hints scattered throughout Salt Lake County.
“I keep putting myself in the shoes of a kid, what would be a really fun adventure to do along with your family. We organized it based on that,” Cline explains.
Rather than the last treasure hunt and the $5,000 hunt in 2020, the Jr. Treasure Hunt, as it is called, will not begin with a poem posted on either Cline or Maxim’s Instagram accounts. Registering households can fill out their addresses on a form online and expect to see the first clue arrive in the mail shortly.
Cline explains the Jr. Treasure Hunt, which will be more of the scavenger hunt variety, where one clue will lead to another, using plaques emblazoned with scannable QR codes to indicate the location of the next location.
The coolest and newest part, they say, is that Cline and Maxim are working with a software engineer to formulate a leaderboard on the website, that can show which families have made the most progress on the hunt.
While there will be a cash prize for the first few groups to reach the conclusion of the hunt, which will be financed again by Cline and Maxim, as well as a third friend that has been brought into the loop, the buriers are suggesting the winners leave a creative and fun prize for the next family to find at the end.
Whereas the last treasure hunt involved a bit of a challenging hike, slightly off the Bonneville Shoreline Trail, Cline assures interested families this hunt is intended for children of all ages to participate. Entirely located within Salt Lake County, the clues will be scattered in both outdoor areas and perhaps locations more within the metro districts.
“Nothing crazy, nothing even in the same universe as the last one,” Cline says.
So far, with about two weeks to go before the launch of the Jr. Treasure Hunt, the organizers have already had around 500 family submissions. Cline jokes one of the more challenging parts of putting on the hunt will be stamping and addressing the envelopes to the hundreds of participants by hand.
“Who knew stamps were so expensive,” he laughs. “I haven’t bought stamps in my whole life. I’m going to have to spend like $1,000 on stamps.”
Rules and registration for the Jr. Treasure Hunt are available here. Cline and Maxim remind fortune-seeking families to be safe on their exploration by using caution and wearing their seatbelts during the hunt. There will be a bit of driving from clue to clue, they say.