Saturday’s “Eye Spy Venice” scavenger hunt downtown is worth borrowing a child to participate if you don’t have your own.
It begins at 8:30 a.m. at the Centennial Park Gazebo and will take you through the Venice Farmer’s Market where some vendors will give out freebies, and then all over downtown in search of a fire truck, cherry picker, school bus, postal truck, recycling truck and other cool work vehicles.
“At each location, we will teach safety and do fun activities,” says Linda Wilson, manager of the Venice Farmer’s Market. They’ll learn about healthy eating, too.
Among the activities, scavengers will get to sort mail, watch the city’s new cherry picker in action, and climb on the school bus so youngsters approaching their first day of school will get to practice with a parent and ask questions. Surprises await children at each stop, where they will also learn about safety and how all these fun work vehicles work.
“We’ll have a police car and kids can sit in the front, or the back where you never want to be,” says Wilson. Officers will show off a Segway and police bike and explain how they patrol the Legacy Trail.
Scavengers need to show up at 8:30 a.m. to receive spy maps, clues and directions; the first 100 children receive goody bags. When they finish the hunt, scavengers can return to the Gazebo for a prize.
“This is the one time of year that I get really excited,” says Wilson, who started the scavenger hunt five years ago. It has grown over the years and the treasure stops have become more elaborate.
Wilson is getting help this year from Venice MainStreet, the Citizens’ Police Academy, the Venice fire and police departments, and lots of volunteers.
You don’t need to pre-register; just show up by 8:30 a.m. at the gazebo. Fingers crossed the rain holds off.
Also going on this weekend: a summer arts and crafts show, 10 a.m.- 3 p.m., at the Venice Community Center.