Midtown Pumpkin Palooza Support

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October 22, 2016 marked the Midtown Raleigh Alliance’s first Midtown Pumpkin Palooza. The fun family event donated 100% of proceeds to Duke Children’s Hospitals. Cii Technology Solutions proudly sponsored the event and assisted with setting up the Scavenger Hunt portion of the event and the website for the event.

Midtown Pumpkin Palooza Scavenger Hunt logo

Pumpkin Palooza was organized by the Midtown Raleigh Alliance as a fundraiser for Duke Children’s Hospitals. The event’s activities included a Chili Cook-Off, a Trivia Challenge, a Pet Costume Contest, Food and Vendors, and a Scavenger Hunt (sponsored by Cii).

The Promotional Website

Cii was tasked with a creating a promotional web page for the event within the Midtown Raleigh Alliance website. For an event with so many different activities, we wanted to make sure each activity provided an efficient description while also making it easy to click around to see other activities and info about Pumpkin Palooza. Putting all the info on one page with active menu tabs made sense to make it easy and fast for potential attendees to learn about all aspects of the event.

Pumpkin Palooza Website Home Screen

We included information about tickets and registration, and linked out to the Eventbrite page set up by the Midtown Raleigh Alliance.

Pumpkin Palooza Website Registration Screen

This layout also made it easy to feature information about Duke Children’s and the event sponsors.

Pumpkin Palooza Website Sponsor Screen

The Digital Scavenger Hunt App

Cii also headed up the Scavenger Hunt creation team. The Scavenger Hunt’s purpose was to traverse the North Hills area, solve trivia, discover areas/locations, and photograph/record activities. The top 10 teams were rewarded with being entered in a drawing for the Grand Prize.

We began the process by researching and viewing demos of 4 different scavenger hunt applications. We wanted to first uncover what types of challenges were available, and understand the logistics of the challenge. We ultimately decided on Social Scavenger, an app loaded with features and multiple options for types of scavenger hunt challenges.

Social Scavenger Logo

Now that we had an app, we began coming up with ideas for the challenges with the rest of our Scavenger Hunt team. With many ideas on the table, we narrowed the number of tasks/challenges down to 25 since the hunt had a 1-hour completion time.

Once we had decided on the challenges, we began inputting them into the Social Scavenger Game Builder; getting familiar with game managing interface, and establishing all the challenge types and point values. After we felt the game was ready, we did our first test run with one team and one manager. We learned a good bit about how the game would operate from this first test.

However, we learned even more from the next test a week later. This time, we did a test with 3 teams.

  • We learned that many teams would complete the same challenges in the same place, and probably at the same time – taking out some of the fun and diversity. This led to us adding more variety to the challenges and changing the order in which they were listed in the Hunt.
  • We also learned that we should have the challenge submissions auto-approve and be counted/accepted, unless a game manager sees the submission after the fact and rejects it.
  • And finally, we learned about sending push notifications to teams to give them feedback and mention teams that did a standout job on certain challenges.


Since the Scavenger Hunt was obviously more fun with communication and feedback from the game manager, it made sense to have a two-person “command center” during the Hunt. We decided to have two of us on laptops run the game and push notification communication, with two monitors displaying the Live Stream and Leaderboard for the event attendees to follow. We mocked this setup in our office a week before the event to ensure it was feasible and sufficient.

Pumpkin Palooza Command Center Mock Setup

Pumpkin Palooza Day

On the brisk, sunny afternoon that was October 22, we rolled out our tent, tables, computers, and monitors to set up our command center. By the time we had everything set up, we had pre-registered participants and new takers for the Scavenger Hunt lined up to join the game and get ready to hunt! As we finalized the game’s rules and challenges (some were day-of specific), we assisted participants in installing the app, setting up their teams, and joining the Pumpkin Palooza Hunt. (thanks again to the volunteers from Duke Children’s!)

Once teams began scavenging, we locked in on our computers to Accept/Reject challenge submissions and send notifications out to the competing teams. We saw many creative and entertaining photo and video submissions; we had a great time seeing them all coming into the stream.

Much to our surprise, many teams finished all 25 of the challenges within the 1-hour time limit (some teams really knew the North Hills area well!). When the time was up, we had our 10 teams with the highest point totals entered into a drawing to receive the Pumpkin Palooza grand prize.

From what we gathered, all the teams that participated had a great time doing this modern-take on a scavenger hunt, and so did we! On top of that, Duke Children’s Hospitals will receive a check for 100% of the event’s proceeds in December. Thank you to the Midtown Raleigh Alliance, Pumpkin Palooza sponsors, and all those who came out to the event!