This last weekend, I drove up North to attend the 6th Annual Kearney Picnic. This picnic is the event of events for Nebraska. Located at Ft. Kearney State Park, the event is an all day social gathering with buffered by camping. With the event on 9/12/09, it was perfect timing for another online event called a 12 of 12.First, let’s look at the 12 of 12. This is a new concept for me to try, but I’ve heard about it for a while. A 12 of 12 is a photography event where you try to get 12 photos that highlight your day. Held every month on the day of the 12th, there are sometimes a focus category, other times just open for anything. The whole idea is to document your day. This month, Geocaching was the focus, so having it occur on the same day as the picnic was perfect.
I arrived at the campsite Friday evening after a lengthy drive from Kansas City. 8601 and TC had been there all week, using their vacation days to relax and do some geocaching. Unfortunately for them, or really for 8601, it decided to rain on Friday. Why is that unfortunate? Well, his tent didn’t hold up as well and not only did his sleeping bag get soaked, but his tent had a few puddles and his cot had a nice large wet spot (and no, he didn’t make it).
But, this little setback ended up helping me out. They both decided to spend the night in a hotel in Kearney and I got the luxury of using TC’s tent and cot. I slept like a baby that night. The next morning, I began my 12 of 12.
Taking photos during the day wasn’t hard. But, I wanted to add an extra element. I took all of my photos using my Blackberry Storm, and posted them online during the day. You can see my photos by going to my Flickr account. A set was created for them that you can see HERE. Since the entire day was about geocaching, finding things to photograph wasn’t hard.
The event was a lot of fun, as was expected. The food was great. The company was great. The caches were…well this year there weren’t any caches placed. Instead, some mini-seminars were given. And I just happened to be one of the presenters. I gave a seminar on puzzle caches. Since this is the first time I have done a geocaching seminar, and due to the last minute nature in which I decided to go (I made the final decision two days before leaving), I’m sure I could have done better. Especially if I had a computer and projector to give a more visual presentation.
There were also a few activities, such as count the film canisters in the jar and measuring GPSr accuracy. After my presentation, a group of us went out to a nearby Wilderness area to do some caches. We only skipped one (due to extremely high and thick grass), and we came back later that night to do the night cache that was there. The night cache ended up having the one photo I wanted to take that day that I missed. I had left my phone in the car and after finding the cache, I wanted to get a photo of the cache container. Oh well.
Unfortunately for me, TC and 8601 decided to come back to the campsite Saturday night. And since I never set up a tent, I was too lazy that night to start putting it up. I had debated setting up my own cot outside, but as it approached midnight, I realized that it was going to be a very dewy night. So I set up in my car. After about three hours of deep, comfortable sleep, I spent two hours tossing and turning. Putting some shoes on, I dug my sleeping bag out of the trunk, moved stuff out of my back seat and set up there. After about two hours of deep, comfortable sleep (and realizing it was 7 AM), I then spent two hours tossing and turning (but not as bad as before).
Sometime around 9:30 I finally got up for good. Unlike TC and 8601, I didn’t to pack up (YAY!) but I waited for them and we went for breakfast before we each began our own drives home.
Overall, the weekend was a lot of fun, even with having sleep in the car. I enjoyed the 12 of 12. It was interesting trying to come up with creative things to photograph that helped document my day. But, everything must end and I came back home Sunday afternoon, threw some laundry in and began the task of preparing for work the next day.
Now to prepare for the event this weekend…and then the one next weekend. It’s a busy month for event caches.