By Kathy Knotts
Looking for a fun family activity that can be done without leaving the state and benefits a great cause at the same time? Try tackling the 2nd annual Great Puzzle Pursuit Statewide Scavenger Hunt.
Pathfinders for Autism presents their second year of this family-friendly interactive scavenger hunt that can be done from any location within Maryland. From May 20 through 22, teams can try over 200 missions at home, in your neighborhood, community or anywhere in Maryland using an app called GooseChase to upload photos or videos.
The missions are created with fun in mind. Missions may include belting out the lyrics from Disney’s Encanto at a Dunkin’ Donuts drive-thru, doing the Conga line down the aisles of Home Depot or handstands at a local playground. Missions are suitable for all ages.
“We are thrilled to bring back this wonderful fundraiser,” says Katie Ramirez, development director for Pathfinders. “Last year’s fundraiser raised over $15,000. In 2021, families joined us from the greater Baltimore area, Carroll County, Montgomery County and the Eastern Shore, so we have expanded this year’s hunt to include missions throughout the entire state.”
Teams are composed of 10 individuals and teams can be family and friends as well as corporate teams.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, Maryland has the fourth highest autism rate in the U.S. One out of every 54 children is diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder and 1 out of 6 is diagnosed with some type of intellectual/developmental disability. For over 20 years, Pathfinders for Autism has worked to support and improve the lives of individuals affected by autism through expansive, customized programming, and by providing resources, training, information, and activities free of charge.
Puzzle Pursuit teams will compete throughout the weekend for prizes. The top prize will be $1,000 cash, second prize is an ultimate backyard crab feast and the third prize is $500 cash. Regional prizes and creativity prizes will be awarded as well.
“Pathfinders for Autism is proud to host the Great Puzzle Pursuit. It is heartwarming to watch teams come together to have good old-fashioned fun, while supporting our organization. All monies raised helps us further our mission and reach more families in need of resources,” stated Ramirez.
Puzzle Pursuit begins May 20 at noon and runs through May 22 at 5pm. Family and friends teams are $25, corporate teams $100. Learn more: PathfindersforAutism.org.