The News Desk is a collection of news, notes and breaking items affecting the Fredericksburg community.
No itty bitty accomplishment
BY JONAS BEALS
Joan Minnich said it took her about six hours of scouring downtown Fredericksburg to find them all.
But her determination paid off, as Minnich took home $500 as the winner of the 2012 Free Lance–Star Itty Bitty City scavenger hunt.
The eighth-annual contest encourages locals to take a closer look at their city. Free Lance–Star photographers take extreme close-ups of interesting downtown fixtures that might otherwise go unnoticed. It’s up to the scavenger hunters to find them and properly detail their locations.
Winners are chosen randomly from successful entries, with three people winning cash prizes. This year, there were 653 entries.
It was Minnich’s first grand-prize win, but not the first time she’s placed in the top three in the contest.
“My husband says I’m the luckiest person in the world,” said the 74-year-old Minnich, a Fredericksburg resident.
“I’ve done it every year since it started.”
She started this year’s search with two friends—Barbara Bodner and Sharon Weaver—but had to finish on her own. The three helped each other when they were together, but made sure not to share the answers they found on their own. Eventually, Minnich found the answer to the fifth clue: “the angel.”
“That was the hardest one to find,” she said.
Brian Seay and his four children agreed. “The angel” was tough to find, but it was part of an enjoyable few days downtown.
“We thought it would be something neat to do,” said Seay, a King George resident. “It turned into a little family outing. They couldn’t wait to go. They were excited about it.”
He said that it took parts of four sweltering days for Rebecca, 9; Allison, 11; Emily, 13; and Cody, 13, to find them all.
The heat didn’t diminish their enthusiasm, and although they did not win, the four youngsters turned in one of the more creative entry forms. Instead of writing down the winning locations, they posed for a group photo with each clue. They had plenty of energy left to ham it up for the camera.
Seay said it was a great opportunity to do something as a family, and to let the kids get creative on their own.
Minnich and the Seay family plan to do it again next year.
“I just think it’s a lot of fun,” Minnich said. “It really keeps your mind active, that’s the main thing.”
Jonas Beals: 540/368-5036