THE AFTER HUNT DINNER
Each year at the annual Citizens Association of Georgetown the auction items include one that has scored three years of popularity: The Georgetown Scavenger Hunt. As the name indicates, it is a scavenger hunt to the east, west, north and south of Georgetown, and many points in between. All kinds of stops, tasks, and "pieces of evidence" that must be benevolently purloined. The lucky bidders gather for the challenge, and tonight was the night, though the 2015 edition, sadly, is the last of this fun game. I got to experience it, thankfully. Constance Chatfield-Taylor, one of the organizers, enlisted me at the last minute to be a clue and a judge. Here are some photos from the evening.
The Hunt began at 5:30 in Constance's garden, where the five teams were handed their clue sheets (beer, wine and snacks, too) and instructions on protocol and timing. There were a lot of stops they had to make and they had to be done by 8:30 on the dot.
And then every body was off.
I was asked to post the full scavenger list, and here it is as it was written. The numbers are somewhat scrambled, but I gather that's part of the adventure.
1) I’m not that old, but I AM the first hotel in Georgetown. Can you find Charnee? She’ll have the key to success! 5 points
2) Built in 1765, I’m the oldest standing building in Washington. Look under the steps for rock solid evidence and bring it with you. 5 points
3) shhhhh…..Tonight is Light the City Georgetown from 6:30 – 8:00, and 13 churches in Georgetown will participate in this the open church candlelight tour, to pray as a community for peace and unity. 3 of the 13 will be featuring gospel music. Record 30 seconds of video of gospel music. 15 points
4) One of the best parks in Georgetown, I’m named for a flower. There is something wonderful going on tonight there. Can you find me? I’m the featured guest and I’ll be within 20 feet of home base. Look high and low! 15 points
5) ‘Oh, say can you see’ a tribute to me and my song? I was certainly the rage last year, with the big anniversary and all. Is there proof in the night? We think so… 10 points
**6) In 1576, the Republic of Venice publicly condemned this sport, punishing those who played with fines and imprisonment. YOUR TEAM, however, can be strikingly good! Ask for Ben ** 7:00 – 8:30 ** ALL HANDS 20 points
7) Is it worth it, my sweet? Bring me back a cupcake – 5 point
8) I’m a restaurant that is named after the year the constitution was adopted, and I must say, I’m a cozy nod to America's romanticized past. Care to comment? Ask the bartender downstairs for a card… 10 points
9) This townhouse was John F. Kennedy’s fifth, and last, Georgetown home. He left from this house to take his oath of office at the Capitol, and give his “ask not what your country can do for you…” speech on that cold January day in 1961. A neighbor’s house was known to reporters as having the best vantage point for viewing the happenings at the house. There is a plaque (clearly visible from the sidewalk) on the neighbor’s house.
What does this plaque say? 10 points
10) I’m new, and I’m cool, and here you will find a different kind of pleasure. Think Garden and Gun comes to Georgetown. Deer, antelope, zebra, water buffalo (good thing I’m right next to the canal). See Elise – she has a game for you. Onward! ALL HANDS 20 POINTS
13) George and Pierre designed the layout of Washington here, with drawings spread out on a large table on my second floor. I’m still around today as a private club, and many dignitaries and locals grace my curved stairway leading to the front door. I’m fairly exclusive, but see Joseph - he will help you solve the mystery Q&A! ALL HANDS 20 POINTS
14) We might not have social security if not for Frances Perkins, who lived in Georgetown and signed the social security act. There are warmongers, ironmongers, fishmongers, cheesemongers and ?? Go to this local student hangout and find Pria – and The Woman behind the New Deal. Check out page 163 and proceed to this nearby house! This is where the social security act was sealed with a bottle of whisky. ALL HANDS 20 POINTS
15) Feeling like a little adventure? On the East side of one block of Wisconsin Avenue in Georgetown, you can shop in China, Italy, India, the Spice Islands, Lebanon, Japan, America and the UK. Bring back proof of your travel from any one of the international destinations… 10 POINTS
16) There are three of us with the same first name, who were all democratic senators, and we all ran for president. Oddly enough, we all lived in the 3300 blocks of N, O and P. Who are we, and can you give us the street address of any one of the houses on N, O or P __________________________10 POINTS
**17) There is one of me in Alexandria, too. I smell GREAT and feature jars of Backwoods Hickory Rub, Jamaica Jerk, Onion Obsession, Tailgater’s Blend. Cumin, Coriander, Curry. Mmmm…. But wait! There are 3 types of flowers, the only flowers, all together. What are they
____________, ____________, and ____________.
Ah, sweet smell of success. 15 POINTS
18) Sing us a song you're the piano man. Sing us a song tonight. Well we're all in the mood for a melody . And you've got us feeling alright --- Find Gene!
*not on K street ALL HANDS – 20 points
18) OMG! I really need an exorcist as everybody is scared of me. Starting at the bottom, what numbers are my landings? _________________ 10 points
19) This bank has won a gazillion awards, and was one of 150 companies in the Greater Washington area to be named a Washington Post Top Workplace in 2014 and 2015. Find this bank, it has a view of the FOUNTAIN on the waterfront, and bring back a photo of the logo! 10 points
20) In 1745, I was the first real commodity in Georgetown. I was brought in by the wagon load from Maryland and Virginia and inspected, and ships would pick me up at the waterfront and sail me away. I’m still sold HERE in this smokin’ hot town. Don’t forget your tokin’… Walter, Theresa, Chris or Seth can help.
20) Talk about history! Truman, LBJ, Nixon, JFK - wow! I’ve dished out lots of stories over the years. JFK proposed to Jackie in booth 3, but see Claire for your 'carry out’. Who was the meat loaf lover? __________________ 10 points
The full list numbered 25, with bonus questions.
My assignment was to be at The George Town Club, where I host The Q&A Cafe, with a new one coming up, and the Scavengers were to approach me, sitting at the bar, with these clues:
I produced a Charlie Rose interview with Charles Manson at Saint Quentin prison for CBS News, and also had dinner with Albrecht Muth and Viola Drath at their home around the corner from the GTC. Muth was convicted of the murder of Drath, and is now in prison. The Oscar-winning actor who will play him in the movie is Cristoph Walz. The costume Muth liked to wear as he walked around Georgetown was an Iraqi general's uniform. Once they got the clues, they left with GTC cocktail napkins ... to prove they were there.
Four of the teams made it but it was becoming a long wait for the fifth. It's lonely being a clue, sitting by myself at an empty bar. YES, A SELFIE
I had promised a friend, Larry Calvert, that I would stop by the annual end-of-summer pool party he hosts with his husband, Mike Mitchell, at their home, which is about a half block from the GTC. When it seemed that maybe the 5th group might not make my stop I left a note with the maitre' d, giving Larry and Mike's address, should they appear. My instructions were they could come find me at the party ... like a clue. And that's what they did. When they walked in, Larry said, "you must be the Scavengers." He offered them beers and lobster rolls, and I took a photo of the group. I said the "task" was them jumping in the pool.
Larry was such a good sport about the Scavengers. It turned out he knew some of them. But they couldn't stay long. They had to find a gospel choir, which they did at Mt. Zion Church, just as evening services ended. No problem, several members of the choir sang to them on the street.
All the teams showed up on time at the Scavenger Hunt Dinner at Frank Marshall's, where Charlie and Constance began to tally scores.
But mostly everyone was interested in the Tex-Mex buffet from Guano's and the margarita machine, and who can blame them? These folks were hungry and thirsty.
Not a scavenger item, but a house party is not complete without a dog!