One of the perks of working at Search Mojo are the super-fun team-building days we participate in a few times each year. These can be anything from learning how to cook, to learning the sport of curling (and yes, hilarity ensued – check out the crazy curling photos here). Our most recent team-building event took place last Friday – a scavenger hunt celebrating the rich history of Search Mojo’s hometown, Charlottesville, VA – which this year is celebrating its 250th anniversary.
Dubbed “The Amazing Race Charlottesville,” the scavenger hunt pitted teams against each other (and against the clock) to visit as many historic sites as possible that were listed in the Amazing Race notebook each team received. Upon visiting these sites, teams needed to check in and complete a challenge at each place using a mobile application called SCVNGR (this app was also used for the first ever Search Mojo Amazing Race). The challenges, for the most part, were to take a photo with your team of the historical site or the marker that was placed there to commemorate it. Here are some of the *ahem* interesting photos that resulted:
For each check-in and completion of a challenge, teams were awarded points (the more difficult the challenge or the further you had to drive to get to the site, the more points were at stake). Each team was also given $200 in cash to spend, if necessary, to complete certain challenges. All teams had to meet back up at a local watering hole called Beer Run by 4:30pm. Additional points were awarded 1) for every dollar not spent out of the $200, and 2) for every minute before 4:30 the team was at Beer Run (up to 30 minutes before). The team with the most points at the end of the scavenger hunt was the winner.
I love scavenger hunts, and this one was especially interesting because it was celebrating our local history. As we made our way from site to site, we learned a lot of intriguing facts about our fair city – a place where many famous figures have called home (such as Edgar Allen Poe, Georgia O’Keefe and, most notably, Thomas Jefferson). We also learned some things we wished we hadn’t known, such as the gruesome murder of a mayor’s wife in this house (which today has been renovated into apartments that are available for rent, just in case you’re interested):
From a team-building perspective, the scavenger hunt was an excellent way for team members to bond and work together towards a common goal. The time constraint made teams think on their feet, while the different challenges (which were in various locations throughout the city, some further away than others and some requiring the payment of an admission fee) required teams to come up with a strategy based on where they could get the most points within the shortest amount of time. Team Content’s (my team’s) strategy, for instance, was to concentrate on the sites within the City of Charlottesville rather than driving further out to sites like Monticello and Michie Tavern (both of which also required admissions fees). This way, we completed a high volume of challenges within a very concentrated area without spending any money.
All in all, the 2nd annual Search Mojo Amazing Race Charlottesville was a huge success. We learned a lot about Charlottesville, bonded as teams and had a great time in the process. Want to see more photos from the scavenger hunt? Check out our photo album over on Facebook!