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Scavenger Hunting -- Chicago as a Corporate Playground

May 16, 2008
Corporate life is often compared to a big game. It's a game of wits, dedication and of course the use of all of your assets put together, in a fine well-oiled machine. Often, corporate execs and staff feel that to consolidate team leadership and ownership of responsibilities, an exercise of minds between workers in a new environment in a team building element is called for. Scavenger hunting is being used for such an occasion as this type of event has proven pretty interesting for a number or blue chip corporations.

The team building in Chicago experience uses scavenger hunting as a means provides a tone of modern scenic and historic material to anchor questions around. But before some examples of what Chicago landmarks the game can be played against, I'll provide a little overview on the game itself.

Scavenger Details

So you may remember as a child playing a scavenger hunt going to each clue and reading the riddle to find the next clue and the next, so on and so forth. It's not unlike that, except the scale is much larger and the questions are going to be more difficult. And unlike a traditional scavenger hunt, where questions refer to items that are to be retrieved, simply using each member's wits to find the answers to cryptic questions is all that is needed.

Most corporate team building scavenger events begin by having an M.C. pump up the crowd, playing the role of a jester or someone being witty enough to pique everyone's interest for the task on hand. The Hunt questions do not center on a specific task where one person may be better. For instance, someone who is good at history of Chicago will not necessarily have an advantage or scene steal from the rest. The questions are varied enough to touch on many different skill sets. One could be trivia based, another could include a hidden anagram or a word may allude to a dual meaning that unlocks to reveal the answer, something tongue and cheek so to speak.

In Chicago

Chicago is a cultural canvass for a scavenger hunt trip. For instance, many of the big corporations have the financial clout to budget in a motorized scavenger hunt. It's not uncommon to have a Limo drive hunt, whenever the budget fits. This is good for a full city-wide hunt that can take one from the Union Station to Millennium Park then to Wrigley Field and end in the famous Art institute of Chicago.

Chicago has a colossal business sector, so the scavenger team building in Chicago has caught on well. Scavenger hunting was made popular in Chicago specifically because of the infamous University of Chicago scavenger hunts.

The University, often noted for its Nobel Laureate past graduates, is also noted for being quite goofy at times. They host an annual scavenger hunt that pits teams to find treasures, or to perform unusual feats in two days time (think people dressed in chicken suits and riding around in wheel barrows). It's reached a proportion where many universities from around the world are aware of the bar they set. For instance, to retrieve a picture of a group member and an Ontario police officer is an example of such levels that their students face.
About the Author
Watson Adventures (http://www.watsonadventures.com/chicago.html) who organize scavenger hunt event for team building in Chicago and beyond. The hunts are nationally renowned and place participants in famous city districts and museums. The author, Art Gib, is a freelance writer.
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