COLUMBUS -- A scavenger hunt is getting competitive in Columbus.
Jeff and Cathy Gokie are encouraging people to join their annual scavenger hunt, which started Monday of this week. As owners of the historic 'Henry on 11th Street' building, they've always been passionate about history. So, they brought their scavenger hunt back after a few years' break -- about six years ago. The game is making others passionate about history too, so much so that nearly 1,500 people are competing this year according to the Gokies.
"It's great for the communities but also for getting the family together. Maybe while Mom is at work the kids are at home figuring out where they're going to search next, and then everyone can go out together," Jeff Gokie said.
People are also getting better at finding the prize.
The Gokies announced a woman found this year's treasure, Wednesday night. She'll be awarded the $250 award, but they're going to continue to release hints to see if it's too easy for everyone else, too.
Each year, the prize is related to the annual 'Columbus Days' theme. Once it was a red 'N' for The Huskers; another time it was a golden pineapple necklace.
This year, the prize was a piece of the Cat in the Hat's striped hat -- as the theme was Dr. Seuss. There's even a backstory: Cathy Gokie explained, someone had raided Dr. Seuss' hat closet (which existed in real life) and stole part of his hat. They suspect Thing One and Thing Two hid it in the city.
Hints are always weaving in the history of Columbus: locations one year were based on the original street names, and this year's clues are connected to what used to exist in the city in its early 1800's.
Some passionate seekers often take off on their lunch hour or even vacation days to hunt for the prize.
That's why the Gokies said next year, they're going to have to make it much more difficult.