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Smartphones lead modern day pirates to booty

Sep 18th, 2012 | By | Category: Front Page Layout, Latest News, News

IT was a treasure hunt with a modern twist – 160 people running around the Capital dressed as scarred and tattooed pirates or Kim Dotcom lookalikes.

They were taking part in Adventure Wellington’s SPCA fundraising event, which grouped them into 30 “ships,” whose crews were each given an old-fashioned treasure map (as well as a Google maps image) to help them find their way to five locations.

The pirates participated in various tasks set at each location, and relied on smartphones to complete challenges.

Each team had to take creative photos and upload them to the Adventure Wellington Facebook group using a smartphone. The team with the most “likes” won immunity.

Pirate Ska Face Hook (Stephanie Ayers) said she was impressed by the amount of work that had gone into the costumes, as well as the organisation.

The teams were given a time to meet at each location, and a coach was organised to get them from the waterfront out to Mt Kaukau.

Main organiser Linc Gasking had everyone meet at the plank at the end of the afternoon to announce the winning and losing teams.

Alison Herbert said the idea for a pirate treasure hunt came from a throwaway comment.

“One day I was emailing Linc [Gasking] about something else and I said ‘wouldn’t it be cool if we did something with pirates’.

“He said ‘do it’ and it spiralled from there,” she said.

Mr Gasking (left) mentioned the idea to Captain Elf Eldridge, who has been dressing up as a pirate around the waterfront for three years on international Talk Like a Pirate Day (September 19).

It took six months of planning and 12 people to organise the event. Captain Eldridge thought about the same number would turn up, but word got around.

“Police have been notified,” said another organiser, Jo Boyle, on the day.

Pirates were made up with scars by Body FX’s Nicole Heydenrijk, who will also be helping out with Adventure Wellington’s next big event, Zombie Island.

It will also be a fundraiser for the SPCA, and it will be on Matiu-Somes Island on October 27.

The premise is there has been a zombie apocalypse and the 140 participants have to run a 5km course without being attacked by one of 60 zombies.

Each runner will have tags and ribbons, and must collect an anti-zombie vaccine and make it back to the welfare centre without being caught.

Wellington Region Emergency Management Office will help set it up as if it is a real emergency, so when participants make it to the welfare centre they will be treated for first aid.

MEGAN SMYTH followed one group of Pirates around for the day and took this video:


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