Take your family on a scavenger hunt in Oakland Cemetery

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Sunday in the Park is Oakland Cemetery's fall festival celebrating the history of Oakland and Atlanta. Living history performances will happen throughout the cemetery all afternoon. Free tours will be leaving from the Out in the Rain Fountain every 15 minutes. There will be musical performances and an artists market. No outside food is allowed, but food trucks will be at Lion Square. The event is free, but donations will be accepted.

Hanging out in a cemetery might not sound like a holiday event, unless it’s Historic Oakland Cemetery, of course.

Starting November 21 and running until January 3, you can join family and friends for a self-guided scavenger hunt through the cemetery. No reservations are required to participate.

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With the coronavirus pandemic making it difficult to gather indoors, exploring the cemetery while participating in the hunt might be the socially distanced activity you’re looking for.

You’ll have to buy a printable Holiday Hunt packet online ($25 plus tax; one per team), then download and print it, and follow all-new cryptic clues to solve riddles.

There are three skill levels to choose from, depending on your scavenger team:

  • Easy: Kid-friendly riddles and perfect for families (expected hunt time:1 hour)
  • Medium: Challenging, but not impossible to solve, riddles (Expected hunt time: 1.5-2 hours)
  • Deadly: Try it if you dare (Expected hunt time: 2-3 hours)
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With the purchase of a packet, your team will be entered into a drawing for prizes, including tour tickets, memberships, Museum Store gift cards and more. There will be weekly prize drawings, and winners will be notified by email.

According to Oakland Cemetery’s website: “The celebrated and humble rest together at Oakland. For every lavish monument marking a prominent or wealthy family, there are hundreds of small, simple headstones. Not far from some of Atlanta’s best-known sons and daughters are paupers buried at public expense. Here, an ornate tomb is inscribed with flowery verse — there, a plain marker merely says ‘Infant.’ Tycoon and pauper, Christian and Jew, black and white, powerful and meek, soldier and civilian — all are here.”

Buried in Oakland are the namesakes of Atlanta area cities and parks — Alfred Austell, Jonathan Norcross, Samuel M. Inman, Edwin P. Ansley; mayors and governors — Ivan Allen Jr., James M. Calhoun, Moses W. Formwalt (Atlanta’s first mayor), Maynard Jackson, Hoke Smith; and other notable Atlanta residents — Selena Sloan Butler (founded the nation’s first PTA for Black parents), Bishop Wesley John Gaines (founder of Morris Brown College), Julia Collier Harris (co-winner of the first Pulitzer Prize awarded to a Georgia newspaper, for a series of articles and editorials about the KKK and the Scopes Monkey Trial in the 1920s), Robert T. “Bobby” Jones (considered the greatest amateur golfer of all time) and Margaret Mitchell (author of "Gone With the Wind).

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Holiday Scavenger Hunt

November 21 through January 3

Oakland Cemetery

248 Oakland Ave. SE

Atlanta, GA 30312

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