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Wherigo for a class

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Hello all!  I'm going to try and explain my predicament as eloquently as I can.  I am in informal educator at a very large, well visited zoological park.  Needless to say, we get a lot of field trips.  We're hoping to include something like a Wherigo as a post class activity for teachers and their students.  Something that can be done at their own pace, but still expand on what they learned in a class here at the Zoo as well inserting a little fun.


Now here comes my conundrum.  We'd like to be able to do this without requiring people to set up a Geocaching account (I know it's free, but it's extra steps people probably won't take) or taking time out of a crunched schedule to create burner accounts that may or may not be used.  We don't fit under the right category to qualify for an institutional account.  We've talked doing GPS or iPad loaner programs, but as I'm sure anyone reading this will understand, there's a huge amount of risk involved that management isn't quite sure they want to take.  I should add we've considered setting up a basic account for our programs, but there's concern about giving out passwords to the public.


Hopefully that makes sense.  Anyone have success with something like this?

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I don't see why you couldn't create a Wherigo and then just not list it on the caching site.  I'm pretty sure I've seen cartridges listed on the Whiergo.com site that weren't actually geocaches.  That being said, they'd most likely have to create an account on Wherigo.com in order to access the cartridge, which puts you in the same conundrum.  Other options would be the new AR format, which allow for quite a bit of similar type of setups to Wherigo, but again, it would require a player download in order to access it, IIRC.  The other format would be an intercache, but again, would require some sort of player download to use it (I might have this wrong because it's been awhile since I've actually accessed the site).


As to the passwords, you can always change them in order to combat any sort of concern in that regard.


I realize it's not much help and I hope that someone else chimes in with any suggestions they might have as well.

Edited by coachstahly
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It doesn't seem difficult or confusing, it sounds (to me) that you want to use this site to add a little something extra to your zoo.    :)

You already realize that having people not really interested in setting up an account probably an issue.   I agree.

 Caches must be open to everyone, not just the "teachers and students", and require a container and log.


Why not something simple, similar to a scavenger hunt ?  Lots of printed paper, but cheap and little issue.

No "burner accounts" needed...

A state park near me has two "tours" of their property using GPS coordinates.  Both are multi caches, with a container & log at the end.

They do have loaner handheld GPSrs  (with driver's lic), but any GPS phone app that allows you to enter coordinates works too.

Both say , " This text is available in brochure form from the State Park Office" on the cache page (for the start coordinates only)

 - No membership to geocaching.com needed.   Let's those who had fun decide if they want to join for more...



Edited by cerberus1
erasification :D
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You can host the compiled cartridge on any server. Have them download a Wherigo app, then scan a QR code. This will open a web browser, which should then send the cartridge to the Wherigo app.  (That’s what I do on my iPhone, pretty much.)


Since it’s not going to be a geocache, there’s no rule that says it must be hosted on Wherigo.com.


(More ideas later, when I’m not typing on a phone.)

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I also already did what Ranger Fox suggests: just hosted the .gwc file on my own website and link to it with a QR code and then some very basic manual how to install the Whereyougo app (or other player). Just to give you an idea of this: http://www.tiensepoort.be/buitbinnen (sorry, Dutch only but you get the idea when you use Google Translate)


This one even shares the route and final with the geocache and Wherigo listing... I just did it because of what you asked: making the geocache/Wherigo more widely available to the non-geocaching community without the hurdle of creating an account, activating Wherigo.com for the first time, .... It was even a requirement of the people that gave me the permission for the final location.

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Here’s another idea that you can’t do with geocaching: incorporate pictures into your experience. You’re at a zoo: if there’s one thing almost everyone does, it’s take pictures. Hmm...


What about this idea: the Wherigo cartridge takes a family to a certain station in the park. The kids pick up a faux animal tail or ears. The cartridge then shows the location in the park of a few areas by perhaps habitat name. The kids have to figure out where that animal is, go there, and take a picture of them wearing the tail and/or ears. It gives the parents cute pictures of the kids and lets the kids learn something. It might be a bit much to pull off, but fun in the end. (They could return the items somewhere convenient.)


If you don’t want to deal with that logistical issue, you could do a stamp passport book. The cartridge could show pictures of all or part of an animal (or make a puzzle).  Once they arrive at the sign for the animal, the cartridge will show them the location of the hidden stamp box. You could even have a variable difficulty setting to make this challenging for all ages, and even put things in a random order. And when they are there, you could show some optional items in the cartridge that would give them more information than what is just on the signs. 


I think what would be fun for everyone would be a lighthearted and not too challenging puzzle (tails, clues, etc.), something tangible for the kids, photos for the parents, and perhaps a tangible thing (stamp book) for the family to take home to remember their time. 


Don’t worry about difficulties in creating the cartridge. Come up with a fun idea and the community will make it happen. (I’ll pitch in, too, of course.). I’m going to have to look up which zoo you’re working at. This is sounding fun. 


(And, now, back to work. I keep putting in serious overtime.)

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St. Louis Zoo?  I was invited to participate in a game jam in St. Louis once. They wanted me to make a Wherigo cartridge. I did, too, and it was published later. It takes place at the place they had the early 1900s World’s Fair. I hid the cache for that right alongside the zoo’s wall. 


I never did see much much of the city since I was busy with the game jam. I did see the Arch. I didn’t have to pay parking because I was there for under twenty minutes. That was all the time I could afford. 


(One day, I need to stop working so much and just take it easy. I don’t think I’m capable of that! I still have to find people to cache with for Geowoodstock this year. Anyone who wants to have me caching with them can invite me... hint, hint... I’m fine with however many we find or whatever else we do.)

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Thank you all so much!  And, Ranger Fox, yes the Saint Louis Zoo.  :-) 


I guess my biggest concern was working around the technology part. Dani + Iris, I think you're example may be my work around.  I feel like most people have smart phones now, and our campus finally has free wi-fi available to visitors.  


I'm going to take all of these suggestions back to my team, and hopefully we can get the ball rolling on some incredible experiences for our students!

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