Portland Walking Tours

Colleagues, Clues and A Little Competition

April 22nd, 2008

Highlight New Scavenger Hunts from Portland Walking Tours

PORTLAND, Ore. – April 22, 2008 – There’s a new game in town for workers tired of typical company team-building exercises. Portland Walking Tours, local experts in city exploration, is introducing interactive scavenger hunts that encourage groups to flex their problem-solving and communication muscles, get creative under pressure and have fun while on the clock.

Available seven days a week – in four unique indoor or outdoor versions – for teams as small as 10 and groups as large as 300, the Portland Walking Tours’ Scavanger Hunts engage employees in a search for “treasures” throughout a special location in the city. The three-hour events create team-building moments that incorporate problem-solving, time management, prioritization and decision-making skills.

“If you look online for “˜team building’ you’ll find all sorts of activities that claim to create reliance between people and the team, but they usually focus on the individual,” said David Schargel, founder of Portland Walking Tours. “Our hunts are a fun and engaging way to build stronger relationships by incorporating imagination and talent.”

Instead of a typical “grab and go” scavenger hunt, Portland Walking Tours’ Scavenger Hunts provide teams with tricky and humorous questions, combined with quizzical “missions” to be accomplished. Some questions are logistical, while others engage the abstract thinkers or artistic members of the group. Each team must rely on the unique talents of teammates to solve riddles that lead to new clues and locations.

“Within moments of starting a hunt, you’ll see teams getting into a small huddle and start thinking, laughing, exchanging ideas and hatching great solutions to our questions,” said Schargel. “It’s a whole new way to tap into the creative side of each employee and really encourage everyone to think outside the box.”

The first four scavenger hunt locations include the Portland Art Museum, downtown Portland (outdoors), the trendy Pearl District and the downtown Central Library. Groups can also opt for an awards ceremony at the end of the hunt. All hunts, with the expectation of the Central Library, are also offered in a “lunch hour” version which includes a box lunch and lasts just 90 minutes.

Scavenger Hunt Descriptions

Location: Portland Art Museum
The hunt at the Portland Art Museum is an all-weather, year-round event. Teams scour the museum for hints and clues as they creatively work together and match wits with Portland Walking Tours’ diabolical puzzle makers. No advance art knowledge is needed; in fact, it might work against the teams!
Cost: $35 per person (price includes admission to Portland Art Museum)
Options: Clues and missions customized specifically for an organization; awards ceremony with optional catered food and beverages.

Location: Downtown Portland
This hunt takes place in the heart of downtown Portland’s Pioneer Courthouse Square. Teams will need to put on their sleuthing hats as they comb the downtown blocks for clues and work together to creatively complete puzzles and operations. This hunt is a great way for teams to have fun while exploring Portland’s “living room.” No advance knowledge of the city is needed to enjoy or succeed at this hunt. Perfect for both out-of-towners and life-long Oregonians, great times lie ahead as teams discover Portland in new ways.
Cost: $25 per person
Options: Clues and missions customized specifically for an organization; awards ceremony with optional catered food and beverages; special clues and missions utilizing digital cameras, cell phones or GPS handheld devices.

Location: Central Library
There’s more than just books at the Central Library – there’s also mystery. This spot is without question the jewel of Multnomah County, as both the busiest library and an architectural wonder. Teams explore every nook and cranny of the historic building and search for answers to fiendishly tricky clues and tasks. Teams should be sure to bring their Sherlock Holmes caps and be prepared to match wits against Portland Walking Tours’ expert puzzle creators.
Cost: $25 per person
Options: Clues and missions customized specifically for an organization; awards ceremony with optional catered food and beverages; special clues and missions utilizing digital cameras.

Location: Pearl District
Once Portland’s drab and dusty warehouse district, the Pearl is now one of the city’s most hip and vibrant neighborhoods. On the hunt for the pearl, teams pound the Pearl District pavement searching for answers to devilish hints and missions. This hunt winds through parts of the Pearl unknown to many and allows groups to dig up unique Portland history along side streets and back alleys.
Cost: $25 per person
Options: Clues and missions customized specifically for an organization; awards ceremony with optional catered food and beverages; special clues and missions utilizing digital cameras, cell phones or GPS handheld devices.

About Portland Walking Tours
Portland Walking Tours, a division of Hometown Advantage, offers guided tours exploring Portland’s food, history, art, architecture, fountains, parks and neighborhoods. Private walking tours and school field trips are also available. Parent company Hometown Advantage, www.hometownadvantage.com, provides event and meeting planning services including customized group tours throughout the Willamette Valley and Columbia Gorge as well as step-on guides, transportation services and entertainment. The 24-hour Portland Walking Tours information and ticketing line is 503-774-4522. Additional information and online ticketing available at www.portlandwalkingtours.com.

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