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Mountaintop scavenger hunt in Blue Ridge Summit 'a barrel of fun'

June 30, 2008|By JENNIFER FITCH

BLUE RIDGE SUMMIT, Pa. - Rick and Rory Sanders only had small images of doors, windows and steeples when they set out on a scavenger hunt Sunday afternoon. Two hours later, they returned to the event's headquarters having found all 20 sites and feeling fairly confident.

Then, the father-and-son duo learned that another team beat them by 45 minutes.

"We thought we did quite well in two hours," Rick Sanders said.

Timing didn't matter too much in the inaugural scavenger hunt held as part of Mountain Top Heritage Days. The 19 participating teams were allotted four hours to correctly identify and visit sites, earning them tickets for a raffle of gift certificates.

Susann Posey, of Waynesboro, Pa., rushed home from a conference in Ottawa so she could participate in the scavenger hunt. She and her friend Jim Bittner, of Sabillasville, Md., laughed about the sites that proved elusive from their picture clues.

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"I didn't recognize it, and I walked by it all my life," Bittner said, pointing to a picture of the door of St. Mark's Lutheran Church on Sabillasville Road.

"Some of them, we could look at these (pictures) and know right where they were," Posey said.

Bittner, who described the experience as "a barrel of fun," already decided he will participate in future mountaintop scavenger hunts.

"It really gets you looking at the buildings," he said, "and saying, 'I wonder if that's going to be on next year.'"

Mountain Top Heritage Days concluded Sunday, capping off two weekends of events highlighting the community around Cascade and Blue Ridge Summit, Pa.

"For the scavenger hunt, we wanted to select things that are places of interest," said Jeff Coyle, who was chairman of Mountain Top Heritage Days.

Among those were churches, a former library, an old store, the lookout at Pen Mar Park and two monuments. Participants in the scavenger hunt were asked to find numbered signs at those locations.

"What this represents is two states and four counties that are our mountaintop. We wanted something different, unique to be able to show, basically, that we're one mountain," Coyle said.

Creston and Maxine Bumbaugh spent about 90 minutes on their search, finding 16 of the 20 sites. They traveled around Sabillasville, Highfield and Cascade in Maryland, as well as Fountaindale, Blue Ridge Summit and Rouzerville in Pennsylvania.

They were stumped by the picture of the old power house that served the Victor Cullen Center.

"I didn't recognize the windows," Creston Bumbaugh said.

Coyle said friendly competition existed among the teams.

"One group actually switched cars because they thought someone was following them," he said.

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