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Arkansas Geocaching Promotion Drives Park Attendance

We spent some time on the phone this morning with Joe Jacobs,Marketing &Revenue Manager for Arkansas State Parks. The state has placed 52 geocaches –one in each of its parks –and is inviting geocachers to visit them all. Those who do can pick up clues that add up to the coordinates of a bonus 53rd cache containing a series of geocoins that Arkansas minted specifically for this promotion.

The campaign is intended to attract tourists to Arkansas,Jacobs said,and it’s already bearing fruit. “We’ve got about 125 finds in the first week and a lot of great comments about the parks and how much they appreciate what we’re doing for the geocachers,” he says. At this rate,Jacobs expects the bonus cache to be discovered in about three weeks.

The State Parks site has a special page devoted to geocaching,including a worksheet to track finds. The state has supported caching in its parks for years and even offers geocaching instruction as a core program.

Jacobs sees geocaching as a way to get people off the couch and out with nature. “Put a screen in front of my 12-year-old and she’ll go anywhere,” he laughs. Early indications are that Arkansas’ program is doing exactly that.

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