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We held a treasure hunt for my daughters 4 th birthday. All of the explorers met at our local park. This park only had a swing set but had lots of trees to work with. The first clue asked them to look for a sack hung high in the trees. The sack contained an explorers bag for each of the children. They collected a little something for their bag after they found each clue. This would become their lolly/treat bag at the end of the party.
I bought a few yards of calico for the draw string bags. Once I had a system down, it was quite a quick and easy process to sew all 18 of them! The bags were empty except for one that contained the next clue. They were then lead to the sand at the base of the swing set. There they all had to dig to find a stone each. One of them had the next clue tied to it. I bought a couple of bags of river stones from the $2 shop and drew a design on each one so they knew which stones to collect.
Next they were off to find a bunch of balloons tied in a tree. Each balloon had glitter in it so each child that popped a balloon had a magical sparkly explosion. One of the balloons carried the next clue.
Then they were off the find an obstacle course. I thought everything would fall apart at this point. Our age group was from 3 to 4 year olds with only two children 5 and 6. They all managed to wait fairly patiently in line for their turn and even accomplished the course very successfully. Phew, almost there.
Finally they were to find the pinata that was hanging in a tree.
The final clue that was inside the pinata had the kids walk back to our house for party food and cake.