by MARK ST.J. COUHIG
Want to learn more about Sequim’s history during this, the city’s centennial year?
Want to learn how to geocache? You’re in luck!
The City of Sequim has put together the Sequim Centennial Geocoin Challenge, a “historic event” to celebrate the city’s history. To complete the event, geocachers have to make their way to “16 historic spots in the city and the surrounding area,” said local geocaching fiend Caroline Stuckey, who was asked by the city to arrange the event.
Never geocached? Lesson one: It’s pronounced “jee o cash” and it’s accomplished using a GPS — a device that hooks up to the Global Positioning System of satellites that is utilized to let you know where you are and where you’re supposed to go. Other clues to the exact placement of the “cache” — which might be anything from a trinket to a trifle to a what-not — are included in the instructions.
The city created a special gold coin to reward those who complete the route. It’s a “trackable geocoin,” which means each has a unique ID that allows it to be tracked as it travels from geocache to geocache or as it’s passed among friends.
The coin’s progress is tracked online through logs posted by those who find it.
A silver version of the coin also is available for purchase for $11.
All who are interested are invited to attend. Those who are experienced can take off at 9 a.m. Newbies will receive lessons in how it all works, including instruction on how to use your very own smartphone to geocache.
Promoters say millions around the world are taking up geocaching because it’s a fun, safe outdoor family activity.
The event begins at 9 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 17, at Pioneer Memorial Park, 387 E. Washington St., Sequim.
“This is a family event, so bring the kids,” Stuckey said.
To ensure no one jumps the gun to complete the challenge, the instructions won’t be published on geocaching.com until the challenge has begun. Printed instructions will be handed out at the park at 9 a.m.
The route can be completed within three hours, Stuckey said.
There also will be raffled prizes, with everyone who participates receiving a ticket. Those who bring another raffle prize to the event will receive an extra ticket.
Those on hand also can participate in a City of Sequim Trivia Game that provides an opportunity to brush up on the city’s fascinating history.
Experienced geocachers are encouraged to bring their own geocoins and “travel bugs” to exchange during the event.
(No idea what a “travel bug” is? Then listen and learn.)
Coffee and snacks will be available during the event, as well as goodie bags.
To make sure there’s enough stuff to go around, call Stuckey at 681-3183 to let her know the number in your party, including spouses and children.
Stuckey said she’s being helped in putting together the event by Diane Clementi and Judy Farnsworth, two fellow avid geocachers.
The event wraps up the next day with the “Historic Brunch Meet & Greet,” where the special Gold Edition Sequim Centennial Geocoins will be available for pick-up to those lucky cachers who completed the challenge. Everyone is welcome for the brunch, whether they’ve completed the challenge or not.
The brunch kicks off at 11 a.m. at the Mariner Cafe, 707 E. Washington St.
Let Stuckey know if you plan to attend the brunch. Call 681-3183. That’s the number for more information, too.