Idea No.

5167

Pirate Treasure Hunt 8yr - Cut the Cake at the X

Award

Date

Nov 2002

From

Margarette in Singapore

Runner-Up

Pirates of the Caribbean

To celebrate Kenneth's 8th birthday, we had a Pirate Treasure Hunt. 

The invitation card was made on the computer using pictures from pirate clipart sites. To create the atmosphere, I borrowed a mannequin and dressed it up as a pirate with scarf round his head, scabre, eye patch, tattoo and parrot(from Oriental Trading Company-OTC) on his shoulder. We recorded "get set to loot and plunder" on a YakBak(small toy that can record and playback about 8 seconds of "sound" and everytime we pressed that, it looked like the parrot was talking. I wrapped brown paper found a rectangular table and painted a boat on it. Then I stood the pirate behind the table so it looked like he was in the boat.  On the wall behind him, I stuck cardboard palm trees(OTC)

Next to the pirate, there was a treasure chest I made and filled with jewelry and gold coins. Above I hung a parrot pinata I made.  On the floor, I scattered light and dark blue crepe paper for the sea and sea animal soft toys(12 for $15 from OTC)  The kids came in striped and other T-shirts with jeans and I gave them sashes of brightly colored material.  I made a little booklet of pirate information (parts of the ship, pirate terminology, pictures of famous pirates) and told the kids to look through it while we hid the clues.  The boys team had the parrot picture attached to their clues and the girls team had the fish motif(Scavenger hunt puzzle pieces from OTC)We had a short quiz when we came back and the winning team got to start the treasure hunt first. I told the kids that Blackbeard was dead and whoever found his treasure could claim it as his own. But Jeremiah Basingstoke, the evil pirate was also after the treasure.

I had a treasure hunters supply box(compass, telescope, matches, rope, penknife, binoculars etc) and each child could pick one item.  If they needed a different item, they had to come back to the party room to swap for the new item. There were 6 clues and each had a challenge. Each child earned his pirate hat (OTC $2.95) when the challenge was done. The two teams had to pick 6 different members to perform each challenge.  We live in a fenced off area with 8 apartment blocks.  The party was in the clubhouse function room. 

The first clue said the  Captain's pet monkey, Shadrach was lost and they had to find him.  I put one monkey(inflatable from OTC) up a tree near the clubhouse.  Up close, you could see a small piece of paper which said, "This is NOT Shadrach".  Another monkey, Shadrach, was up a tree some distance away.  The second clue said to look behind the waterfall.  There are two waterfalls at opposite ends of our place and the boys picked the wrong one.  It was hilarious how 8 year old Sherman described how they ran to make up for lost time!!  Around clue No 3, it started to rain but the children were determined to carry on.  We gave out umbrellas and continued.

The next challenge was to walk through poisonous weeds to get the clue deep among the bushes.  I gave them corrugated board stepping stones (to keep clear of the poisonous weeds) and they had to pass the boards to the front to continue on their way. Next they had to pass through quicksand.  I put flattened boxes from the local department store on the floor.  Underneath I put some small soft toys(the dog's squeaky bone plush toy worked well) some of which squeaked. If the child stepped on a squeaky toy, he was "sinking" and his teammates had to throw him a rope to pull him out and he had to start again. The next clue was taped to the belly of a fish.  I put 12 inflatable fish(OTC) into the children's' swimming pool. The kids had to make their own catching gear out of poles tied to scoops etc. The last clue led them to a cave(dome tent). 

To get to the cave, they had to crawl through a tunnel (I wrapped dark material round a narrow rectangular table and then round chairs) The dark tunnel was lit by magical lights (fibre optic galaxy wands from OTC) In the tunnel, they are hit by Braveheart's curse.(the guardian of the treasure) They had to grind 3 waga waga leaves and mix it with the paste of yuckberries(Vegemite) to be cured. When they get back to the cave, there is a message saying, "Alas, Captain Kenneth, you are too late!I have outwitted you again. I have slain Braveheart (skeleton from previous Halloween party) and claimed the treasure.  Till we meet again, Jeremiah Basingstoke." I then told Kenneth to dismiss his men since the treasure was gone and pay them. 

Then we went on to cut the cake which had an old style treasure map drawn on it.  I told Kenneth to cut through the "X" on the map.  Lo and behold, there is a small treasure chest there filled with chocolate coins and gold coins(real money).  The treasure is found!  Next, we burst the pinata.  We gave away the inflatable fish and sea animal soft toys and fishes motif boxing balloons (big balloons with an elastic band on it that you put in your fist and then box the balloon with, from OTC) as going home presents.  Kenneth said the best part of the party was walking through the rain and finding the treasure chest!!!

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