Geocaching Events are gatherings of geocachers. These events range from meet-and-greets to geocaching education seminars, to environmental cleanups.
Find an event near you by clicking the date on the calendar below.
Basic Event Tips:
1. Log a will attend, so the host knows people are coming!
2. Don't just drop off trackables, but do bring them along.
3. Read the event description - it will tell you what to bring
4. If the area is rural, download the caches nearby to an offline list before you go
5. There's almost always a group photo. But if you miss the photo, you can still log the cache, as long as you sign in during the event. There are often many other photo ops - take your camera.
6. It's almost always perfectly fine, even expected, to leave the event, find some caches, and come back.
7. Bring cash for the raffles and vendors (if you want - its not mandatory!)
Geocaching has a guide for hosting geocaching events, here:
There are meet & greets - often, but not always, held at restaurants. Sign in, order some food, chat with the group. Share some travel bugs, there might be a small raffle. Some areas have a regular monthly meet and greet on say, the first Tuesday of each month.
There are regular events. Often held at a park, frequently including extra scavenger hunts and games, and a pot luck. Most include a raffle. Geocaching events often include chinese auction style raffles. And almost always a group photo.
There are also specialized theme events. Berwick geocachers held an Introduction To Snakes event - with live snakes and a speaker who talked to us about safety, and the different types of snakes we might see while hiking. We've also attended a Poker Run event. Another really fun one was an Amazing Race themed geocaching event. We have even attended a geocaching wedding that was an event!
There are CITO events. Cache In, Trash Out. These are events were geocachers meet specifically to clean up an area. Cache In Trash Out® (CITO) is an environmental initiative supported by the geocaching community. Since 2002, CITO has helped preserve the natural beauty of cache-friendly spaces. In that time, more than 240,000 people have volunteered at 11,000 CITO events. Twice per year, geocachers can earn virtual souvenirs by hosting and attending events during CITO weeks. Visit the Help Center for information on the next CITO week. https://www.geocaching.com/cito/
Then there are Mega Events. These are usually jam packed with extra activities and classes and things to see and do. Sometimes these have lab caches. Most Mega events are annual events. "Mega-events are the ultimate gatherings for geocachers. Officially, events must surpass the 500 attendees mark to qualify for “Mega” status. Many Mega-Events are held annually, offer plenty of planned activities and attract geocachers from all over the world." At every Mega I have attended, we've also had the opportunity to take photos with signal. Also, look for the lackeys (representatives from geocaching HQ) at the mega events, they usually have pathtags or swag they are handing out.
And of course there is GeoWoodstock every year - a HUGE event bringing cachers, speakers, vendors, lab caches, and often much more. http://geowoodstock.info/
Group Photo at the Owego Cito, May 2017
Often one of our favorite things about geocaching events are meeting other geocachers. Sometimes that is our least favorite part of geocaching events too. It's the same as attending any other event, geocaching related or not. But it can be really fun to cache in a group after an event. A group often has people who can climb a tree, and people who can spot things out of place quickly, and someone who can understand what that clue means, or someone who has seen that type of cache before, or someone who is REALLY good at puzzle caches... working together, you can often find caches that maybe would have been more difficult to find on your own. The more you hear about other geocaches, and the more you see how others approach finds, the easier it gets to find some of the more challenging caches out there.
Molly (#TheAdventuresOfMollyMouse) who is trackable, with the horse mask trackable, at a flash mob event.
Most geocachers would prefer you not drop their travel bugs on the travel bug table at any event. So many get lost that way. But, lets be fair, travel bugs disappear no matter how they are handled. Still, it's great to take travel bugs to an event and place them in caches while out, or hand them off to someone who can get the TB closer to it's goal.
NOTE - some travel bug owners do not like their bugs "discovered" at events. Try to be respectful of that wish, but any travel bug owner should know that once they send the bug out there, they will have little control over what happens next, and most will just be happy if the bug keeps moving and isn't lost.
This is a great time to put your trackable magnet on your vehicle, and take along your favorite trackable item to be discovered by others. Our dog Molly is trackable , and we find that she is a great conversation starter. People like to "discover" her, and pet her too.
This is also a great time for a trackable nametag. https://shop.geocaching.com/default/new-items/moun10bike/event-cache-name-tag.html It's great to write both your geocaching name, with your actual name under it, on these for events.
If you have been to geowoodstock, or a large event where neck wallets (I looked it up, that's really the correct term. I'm surprised too) were part of your package, it's perfectly acceptable to wear that nametag (neck wallet. Still weird) to other events. We saw a lot of people with them at the ASPGB event last week-end, and they were from different geowoodstocks over the past years.
There Are Often Pathtags
I'm pretty out of the loop on pathtags and admit I don't really understand... but Datruck really wants his own, so I'm learning. Apparently it's just a coin version of a business card (but with a design, not an address or info) that you trade with others. You can buy them sometimes, to commemorate different events too. https://www.pathtags.com/ They look like mini geocoins, but unlike geocoins, pathtags are meant to be collected, you do not have to place them in another cache.
There Are Lots Of Games
In addition to the raffle, and the group photo, we typically see Geocaching Bingo, an Ammo Can Toss, and a Scavenger Hunt, at most of the bigger events. Sometimes there is a poker run. There are often more games than you can possibly play at one event, if you plan to eat, cache, and chat with others. It's ok to not play any of the games, or to try and play as many as possible. You choose.
There are dozens of versions of Geocaching Bingo, but the premise is the same. Find someone who has done each of the items listed, and have them sign the square it applies to. Here is one example of a Geocaching Bingo board:
Both of these examples are easier than the last two bingos I have seen. Sometimes, especially at Megas, I think the event organizers customize them a bit knowing that some of the cachers attending have done things like find 100 caches in one day, cached in so many states, hidden one of each type of geocache, etc.
Ammo Can Toss
This is a fun game that is usually played at the ASPGB, as well as a couple of other events we have been to. Ammo cans are filled with weights - most often rocks. There are usually three cans - a large one for the men, a regular for the women (sometimes painted pink) and a smaller one for the children. You stand on the line and toss the can. At the end of the event, whoever threw the can the farthest wins.
As with everything, there are a variety of ways to do a geocaching poker run. The basic premise is that you go to 5 geocaches, collect a sealed envelope with a playing card inside at each cache, then return to the event where you all open the envelopes at the same time and reveal your hand. Best poker hand wins.
Here's someone elses write up about one they attended -
Years ago, we attended an event that was simply a poker run. We met up, got the list of caches to find, then met up again to compare hands. It was in Northwestern Pa and the caches were really spread out. I still remember this as one of my favorite events - we had a blast, and there were lots of cachers to meet at each cache we found.
Recently we were at the Haunted Village Mega event in Waterloo NJ (another of our favorite annual Mega events!) and they had a Poker Run as one of many activities that day.
(What other games have you seen at geocaching events? I'd love to include them here)
Sometimes, There Are Lab Caches
"A Lab Cache is an experimental and extremely rare geocache type. These geocaches are a way for us to innovate and test new ideas to make geocaching even better.
These mostly work the same as regular geocaches: navigate to the location, find the cache and sign the logbook. However, these differ in that you must use the find code in order to mark the geocache as found." https://www.geocaching.com/blog/2013/08/geocaching-labs-faq/
Some events do just have a plain piece of paper you sign in on. But others are a bit more creative. At geowoodstock in Boonsboro MD, we signed a satellite dish. At the Haunted Mega in NJ, we signed a skeleton. At flash mobs, we've signed white boards.
NEPAG 10th Anniversary Event
Hyde Park Cito
Merchlinksy's Geobash of 2010
We've been to Geowoodstock twice - and I haven't done a good job writing about either trip. I did write about the one in Warren Pa, but oddly enough, I didn't include any photos?
Photos from a Geocaching Wedding Event
Photos From The Metro Village Haunted Gathering (one of my favorite events!)
Photos of a bike riding event -
Photos From Geowoodstock XIII
Photos from the Snake Event -
Events We Have Attended: