The lengths people will go to find the hidden objects of a scavenger hunt have made an impact on Marie Frederick.
Geneva Theater, Popeye’s and the Lake Geneva Regional News are preparing to launch the year’s third movie-related hunt in the community.
The next hunt gives people chances to win free tickets to see the upcoming live-action version of “The Lion King,” along with other prizes.
For Frederick, the theater’s event coordinator, the thrill of the hunt is getting people into their communities.
“A lot of times, people don’t appreciate what’s in their own back yard, so these scavenger hunts get people exploring their own city,” she said.
Starting July 11, each week will bring a clue that could lead to a Golden Paw hidden somewhere in the community.
As with past hunts, the clues will be first published in the Regional News, then there will be hints on social media if a Golden Paw is not found.
“We’re not just sticking these things where passersby can see them,” said Frederick. “You have to read each clue to even begin to find it.”
She was surprised by some of the developments that occurred during the first two hunts.
In January, the theater and the Regional News conducted a “Willy Wonka” scavenger hunt.
Each week, a clue was published in the newspaper to find a Golden Ticket. If the ticket had not been found in a couple days, the theater and newspaper posted a hint on social media. The first hunt immediately drew the attention of Kim Hetz, of Lake Geneva.
She and her family are big fans of the 1971 film “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.”
The first clue: “Want to change the world? There’s nothing to it. The art of garden cultivation produces delightfully edible plants.”
After seeing the first clue, Hetz contacted her daughter, a Madison resident, and her son Josh, who attends UW-Whitewater.
But it was the social media clues that led Kim, with help from her children, to the vines growing behind Horticultural Hall, 330 Broad St., Lake Geneva.
Kim and her children, all trivia buffs, made a map of the city before zoning in on the Hall, where Kim found the ticket in a wall of vines.
“This golden ticket scavenger hunt brought my family together to have fun in the town we love and made us think of all the valuable businesses and locations in our wonderful town,” she said.
Frederick was impressed by the Hetzes.
“We just didn’t think people would go to that level of involvement,” said Frederick. “They really got into it.”
Next was the Aladdin Golden Lamp scavenger hunt, which tied into the live-action film release earlier this year of “Aladdin,” starring Mena Massoud, Naomi Scott and Will Smith.
The second hunt ended its final week with no one finding the lamp.
Frederick thought the clue and hints were sure to lead to the lamp near the spillway of the Lake Geneva Dam, by Flat Iron Park.
The clue: “Near turbulent waters, the sail points north.”
There were two hints: “Let the light guide you,” and “It’s water under the dam.”
“I really thought it tied into having a lamp hidden somewhere by water,” Frederick said.
However, no one found the lamp, which was hidden in a gap between a street lamp post and its pedestal, near a sailboat made of colored bricks in the sidewalk.
‘The Lion King’ hunt
The next hunt gives participants a chance to win tickets to a special screening of “The Lion King.”
The new movie will be released July 18 and features a star-studded cast, including Donald Glover, Seth Rogen, Beyonce and James Earl Jones.
But the tickets that are prizes in the hunt will be for a special screening Saturday, July 27, at 4:30 p.m.
It will last three weeks, with the first clue being published Thursday, July 11.
If no one finds the first Golden Paw, a hint will be posted on social media Saturday, July 13.
If the Paw is still not found, a second hint will go live Monday, July 15.
The second week’s clue will be published July 18, with hints to be posted July 20 and 22, unless the Paw is found.
The third and final week’s clue will be published July 25.
Those who find paws can take them to the theater, 244 Broad St., Lake Geneva, for a family pack of four movie tickets, four popcorn orders, four boxes of candy and four sodas.
Then, paw finders can visit the Regional News, 315 Broad St., to sign up for a free one-year subscription to the newspaper, and at Popeye’s, 811 Wrigley Drive, they can get two free passes to the July 27 screening.
Frederick said the special screening is open to the general public as well as the paw finders who obtained free tickets. On July 27 at 4:30 p.m., tickets to see “The Lion King” will be $5 each. There also will be door prizes, a trivia contest and giveaways involving concessions, movie passes and more.