Community shows off its attractions through a 21st century scavenger huntSubmitted: 07/22/2013
Story By Lauren Stephenson

PHELPS - Take a scavenger hunt. Give it a 21st century twist, and you get Geocaching.

"Geocaching is a very inexpensive opportunity for the people in town to get together with their families and do something else without having the computer screens always in front of the kids," says Arlyne Becker, Phound It in Phelps co-coordinator."

Arlyne and her husband recently organized a free Geocaching event in Phelps.

Treasure hunters take a list of coordinates and use their GPS's to find containers like this called Geocaches.

"They have little trinkets and stuff in there that you can trade," Becker says.

Once you find a Geocache, you take a trinket out, and put one in.

That way the Geocache remains full for others.

"It's fun to do that because I really like finding things," says 6-year-old Abraham Meinka.

Abraham and his dad, Kevin, play this never-ending game in Wisconsin and their home state of Michigan.

"I like to get him out into a wild area to have him experience nature. I think he has a good time finding things and looking for them," Kevin says.

Geocaching isn't just a fun, inexpensive way to get the family outdoors.

It also helps them find some of their new favorite places.

"You get out into these parks and wild areas that you would not know about except for you're there geocaching and some of them, you know, we now regular because they're just such interesting, neat places," Kevin Meinka says.

The 21st century scavenger hunt started in 2000 in Oregon.

Since then, it's expanded worldwide.

Now there are more than 2 million Geoecaches located around the world.

Arlyne lives in West Bend now but decided to organize the event in her hometown to show people what Phelps has to offer.

"The people that have come in here, a lot of them have been, 'We've heard about it. We don't know what it is. We're from Chicago. You know, get us going on this. And what a perfect opportunity for them all to get to try it," Becker says.

Those geocachers can now put Phelps on the worldwide geocaching map.

Related Weblinks:
Geocaching website

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RHINELANDER - Harvest Hoedown started Saturday at noon at the Woodpecker Bar and Grill in Rhinelander.

The event had a hay maze, horse drawn carriage rides, food, and live music all afternoon.

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By 3 p.m. Saturday, the World's Largest Cranberry Cheesecake had already been devoured. Sales of slices go towards the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Wisconsin. 

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