By KAREN SHENG
For The News-Letter
The Hopkins Film Society (JHUFS) hosted the first National Treasure Treasure Treasure Hunt on Sunday. The scavenger hunt was inspired by the popular Disney films National Treasure and National Treasure: Book of Secrets starring Nicolas Cage.
“This is the first annual National Treasure Treasure Treasure Hunt. It’s unprecedented. It’s new, brand new,” junior and JHUFS co-founder Julia Gunnison said.
Eighteen participants met at Shriver Hall at 6 p.m. to be placed into four teams: the John Hancocks, the Presidential Kidnappers, the Books of Secrets and the Founding Fathers.
The teams were each assigned a map with five different spots on campus — the President’s Garden, the FFC, the Beach and M-level in Milton S. Eisenhower Library — to find clues that would lead to the prize.
Members of JHUFS were stationed at each location to provide the trivia question or, in one case, a copy of the Declaration of Independence, that participants needed in order to get the word or phrase that contained the letters that spelled out the location of the treasure.
The four clues were based off facts about Cage and his acting career, as well as National Treasure, and included questions like, “What is Nicolas Cage’s given name?” and “What is the movie where Nicolas Cage steals a baby?” The answers lead to the projection booth in the Shriver Hall auditorium, where the prize — a pillow case printed with Cage’s face and torso, assorted bags of candy, four president-themed PEZ candy dispensers, two custom National Treasure Treasure Treasure Hunt T-shirts and an Abraham Lincoln “disguise kit” — awaited treasure hunters.
Sophomore Lydia Milano, a member of JHUFS and a member of the winning team, the John Hancocks, enjoyed the event.
“It was life-changing. I’d say I’ve definitely made friendships forever with the winning group. Definitely going to be at these guys’ weddings, if you know what I’m saying. It was good. It was fun. It was a good time,” Milano said. “I’m actually kind of impartial to Nicolas Cage, but… I thought it’d be fun. It was good exercise, too. Most running I’ve done in a while.”
Junior Tyler Lee agreed.
“It was a fun, exhausting experience. It was exhilarating; I was on edge the entire time. And it was action-packed. It was the most exercise I’ve gotten all week,” Lee said.
Senior Edmund Nowicki, a member of JHUFS since freshman year and one of the people who dispensed clues, said that the purpose of the National Treasure Treasure Treasure Hunt was to advertise the JHUFS. “It’s part of a general agenda this year to make [JHUFS] involved in things beyond just our screenings and our social circle that we create, and do stuff that is film-related but isn’t necessarily just sitting or watching a movie; Something more fun [where] people can move around and such,” he said.
In general, the National Treasure Treasure Treasure Hunt was well-received by participants.
“I saw it in one of the blast emails and it looked like it was really interesting. The poster really scared me at first because it was just a bunch of Nic Cage faces, but it looked like it would be a lot of fun,” freshman Joanna Lee said. “It was interesting. There were a lot of Nic Cage facts that I am now enlightened with. It was really fun.”
Lee added that she now wants to join JHUFS.
Sophomore and JHUFS co-founder Gillian Waldo was responsible for the planning and logistics of the treasure hunt.
“We had to decide on locations, various clues for trivia, assorted codes, treasure maps and also the treasure at the end. We ordered specific things for that as well. It was a long process,” she said.
This was the first of many JHUFS events to come, according to Waldo.
“We’re making a pilgrimage to Divine’s [actor Harris Glenn Milstead’s] grave next weekend, we have a Halloween screening on Oct. 29 and in November we have a special event coming up. Stay tuned for that,” she said.