Idea No.


Surprise Treasure Hunt Party -10yr- Scotland Yard



December 2007


Traci in Tampa, Florida, USA


Surprise Party

I happened to be on a budget and parties were so expensive so I told my daughter she could have a party every other year, so that meant no party this year. But she was turning ten and we still wanted it to be special. I knew she loved mysteries so I began to create a Surprise Treasure Hunt that would send her on an exciting day of deciphering secret messages and hidden clues that would eventually lead to a treasure box. She was not told how she would celebrate so keeping it a surprise made it extra special.

This treasure hunt does require some help from friends but time for everyone else is very minimal.  It began at 9AM when the door bell rang. She answered the door only to find a package that had been delivered with her name on it. Inside the box was a treasure map (made to look really old) a letter from Scotland Yard seeking her help, and a box of business cards marked Private Detective with her name on it. The first clue was in the letter.

She also received a detective bag with a wallet, pen, magnifying glass, pocket watch, money. I was her chauffer for the day. She told me where to go. I would help out if needed ... but rarely was it necessary. Clues were everywhere and set up in riddles. Along the way a present would be hidden with a clue. She got to climb a tree (not too high), and a roof (with pro help), canoe to the middle of a lake to retrieve a floating bottle with a message (with supervision).

Clues were hidden in places like a walnut (and placed back in the bowl,) hidden in a writing pen, I put one clue on a shrinkie dink and shrunk it and she had to use her magnifying glass to read it. She made special stops like her Grandpa's and searched for a clue there, one clue sent her to her cousins salon where she got a pedicure, another to Dairy Queen where I had a bunch of her friends waiting for her as a surprise.

They all had ice cream and received a little goodie bag and they got to watch as she searched under all the tables for yet another clue. She loved that part because she was still able to see her friends and share a part of her adventure. She also got to go shopping, and ended up at the book store where her clue led her to the section of Nancy Drew books. There was yet another clue hidden in one of the books. That led her to the cashier.

The cashier handed her a wrapped gift (A book I knew she wanted and the store was fortunately willing to participate) and on the card it led her to the café where she was suppose to look for a suspicious character. My sister was waiting for her with a detective hat, hiding behind a newspaper.

We all had coffee type drinks and moved on to the next stop. She ended at my sisters house where the family was gathered to wish her a happy birthday and eat cake while of course she searched the last clue to the treasure box which was filled with change, dollar bills, and beautiful costume jewelry.

She had so much fun. Not only was it less expensive than a big party but the gift of time and laughter was well worth the effort!! The idea is to personalize it for your child and use your family and friends to bless them!

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