The first Phoenix Halloween 5K scavenger hunt took place in downtown Phoenix on Saturday.
The new event, hosted at the Tilted Kilt Pub and Eatery at CityScape, drew about 225 people in 70 teams to downtown Phoenix. Although the event was five kilometers, it was not an actual 5K race. The scavenger hunt was organized by Ryfle Events, a new company that wanted to create something eventful that was more than just a run, said Sara Chiappore of Ryfle.
The scavenger hunt began in front of the Tilted Kilt where teams scattered around the second floor of CityScape to solve their first clue to advance to the next location.
Each team was required to take pictures with every clue they decoded and all members had to be in the pictures. Once a team crossed the finish line, a card was filled out with their team name, time finished and their placement.
Before determining placement results, pictures were checked to make sure the teams hit every spot and correctly solved the clues, said Valerie Spata of Ryfle.
General manager Erin Colombi said Tilted Kilt was happy to host the event and bring new customers to the downtown location.
“A lot of people have been to our five other locations but haven’t been to ours, so this was new to them,” Colombi said. “It was a great way to bring in more business.”
The winning team received $500 and the teams who ranked second through sixth place were given $50 gift cards to Tilted Kilt, Chiappore said.
A team called “Draggin’ Ass” won the scavenger hunt and completed the race in just 55 minutes. Team member Jill Diamond said she has participated in similar races and was impressed by this one.
“It was put together wonderfully,” Diamond said.
A costume contest followed the race and gave $200 to the winning team, who dressed as members of the 2012 U.S. Olympic team.
Bill Spata of Ryfle said all the cash prizes came from ticket sales, the sole source of revenue for the event.
A portion of the proceeds from ticket sales will go to the Phoenix Children’s Hospital for brain cancer research, Spata said.
Chiappore was passionate about the charity and said she hopes a bigger effort will be made to help child illnesses.
“We are losing out on children who can make our world better,” Chiappore said.
One team also liked that the race helped raise money for a good cause. They said they would have donated the prize money to charity if they won.
“It’s all for the kids,” Mark Clark said, whose other teammates agreed. “We did it for the fun and for the kids,” Dawn Damine added.
To help support their event, Ryfle was able to get friends and family to help volunteer, Chiappore said.
A new gym located in Scottsdale called Off the Grid Fitness also participated in the event.
“We have been making an effort to work with the community and thought it was a good opportunity to get involved with the scavenger hunt,” said Eric Guilleminault, Off the Grid owner.
To help promote their new business and contribute to the scavenger hunt, Off the Grid Fitness gave participants free two-week memberships.