The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Community

March 20, 2014

Exploring history with geocaching

Mounds State Park offers glimpse into its heritage with annual hike

ANDERSON -- Mounds State Park is offering a way to get people out of their winter funks and enjoy the outdoors.

The park is celebrating its heritage and the arrival of spring with geocaching at 10 a.m. Saturday.

Participants will explore the area and learn about its history as an amusement park through geocaching, a technology-based treasure hunt. The activity involves people using a GPS to hike to certain coordinates.

Jessica Rosier, interpretive naturalist at Mounds State Park, said the coordinates will lead participants to about 15 spots. The locations will include places where a roller coaster, a skating rink and a dance hall were when it was an amusement park from 1897 to 1929.

“This is a part of our history a lot of people don’t know,” Rosier said. “ It’s neat, too, because a lot of people who lived in Anderson for years and years will say, ‘Oh, I kind of remember my grandma telling me about going to caves, that’s probably what she was talking about.’

“They can almost see that family history come to life and stories from grandparents are a little easier to understand.”

The park has held a geocaching event for at least five years, Rosier said. But they decided to add “The Amusing Side of Mounds” to revamp the program and attract new people.

“Once people try it they really tend to get hooked on,” Rosier said. “We have a loyal group of geocachers who come to this event year after year.”

It doesn’t matter what someone’s skill level is, Rosier said. People can meet with her if they aren’t sure what to do.

The event will start with participants meeting at the park pavilion at 10 a.m. and going through orientation.

People are encouraged to bring chili, tomatoes, beans or some type of chili ingredient for a “chili dump.” At the start of the event, all the ingredients will be mixed together and cook over a fire while geocachers explore. People may also bring items for the pitch-in such as cheese, sour cream or crackers.

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