Four theme parks in two days seem like a pretty extreme way
to see the Walt Disney World Resort.
Copyright Disney Enterprises, Inc. All rights reserved
But for the 500+ teams that have already signed up for the
Great Disney Scavenger Hunt (which will be held May 12 - 13 as a prelude to D23's
Destination D: Walt Disney World 40th event) ... These folks are literally
chomping at the bit to get into Magic Kingdom Park, Epcot, Disney's Hollywood
Studios and Disney's Animal Kingdom Park and begin the Hunt. So that they then have
a shot at this event's Grand Prize. Which is a special preview cruise aboard
the Disney Fantasy.
Just yesterday, I got the chance to chat with Steven
Vagnini, the Walt Disney archivist who's been riding herd on the WDW version
of D23's Great Disney Scavenger Hunt since last Fall.
"I've been working with our Clue Crew - which is this group
of about 15 WDW Cast Members, some of which have worked for the Company for
decades - on putting together the questions for this Scavenger Hunt," Vagnini
explained. "And over the past 8 months, we've made every effort to ensure that
this competition will be fair and fun for all participants."
Mind you, because D23's Great Disney Scavenger Hunt is being
held during the day, when tens of thousands of other Guests will be out
enjoying the four WDW theme parks ... Well, Steven and his Clue Crew always tried
to take that into account while they were assembling the questions for this year's
"Given that we know what parts of which Parks get crowded at
certain times of day ... Well, we tried to avoid any questions that might send teams
into theme park restaurants that might be busy during the lunch or dinner rush,"
Vagnini continued. "Likewise we made a point of not tying any of the answers to
seasonal shows and attractions. Everything you need to know to answer all of the
questions in those Scavenger Hunt booklets can be found inside of those theme
parks on the actual day of competition."
Speaking of those four booklets of questions (which will be issued
to each Scavenger Hunt team one at a time as they enter each WDW theme park to
begin that phase of the competition), Steven advises taking a moment to look
over this booklet before you and your teammates then head off into that park,
looking for answers.
As they enter each theme park, each Great Disney Scavenger Hunt team will be issued a booklet similar to the one depicted above. Copyright Disney Enterprises, Inc. All rights reserved
"You have to understand that there are different point
values assigned to different questions. So it might be worth your while to do a
little strategizing with your teammates, see what challenges you all want to
tackle before you then get started," Vagnini said.
But don't spend TOO much time strategizing. D23's Great Disney
Scavenger Hunt is a timed competition after all. Which means that every team
will have three hours in each park (With the exception of Epcot. Given that
this is the largest of the WDW theme parks, teams will be given four hours to
traverse Future World & World Showcase) to complete as many questions as
Which isn't to say that - in order to get as many answers as
possible - that you and your team should then go racing all over the place,
endangering the safety of the other Guests in the Parks. This is why D23 insists
that all Great Disney Scavenger Hunt participants wear their event credentials
at all times. So that - if need be -- any team that's seen running by D23
Scavenger Hunt representatives or Walt Disney World Security can then be
"All in all, we want this to be a fair, fun and safe competition,"
Vagnini stated. "More importantly, we want people to come away from D23's Great
Disney Scavenger Hunt with a renewed appreciation for the Parks. For the level
of detail and the ingenuity of the design that the Imagineers brought to these
That - to Steven's point of view - was the best part of the
hundreds of hours of prep work that he and the Clue Crew put into D23's Great
Disney Scavenger Hunt. Particularly when they did test runs on various parts of
"I had people on my Clue Crew who've been working in these
Parks for decades. And they'd come back after these Scavenger Hunt test runs
and say 'I never noticed that before' or 'I'm seeing parts of this Park that I've
never ever seen before,' " Vagnini laughed. "And if we're surprising longtime
Cast Members ... Well, I can't wait to hear what D23 members have to say."
And if you and your friends would like to get in on the fun,
maybe form a team for the inaugural run of the WDW version of D23's Great Disney
Scavenger Hunt ... Well, there are a few spots left for next month's competition.
But given all of the cool Disney-related prizes that will be presented to the
top 10 teams, those spots are expected to fill up shortly.
So if you'd like to register for D23's Great Disney Scavenger
Hunt and/or learn more about the terms and conditions associated with next
month's event, you might want to head on over to the official website ASAP.
I'd like to do it.
My team is pumped and ready for the scavenger hunt. I cannot wait to get started.