Scavenger Hunt Reveals SoBo Surprises

A pair of mermaids perched high over Light St. just south of Fort Ave.

A massive black iron wheel in Otterbein that once powered Baltimore cable cars.

A nearly two-century-old cornerstone set into a brick wall at Fort McHenry.

These are some of the more surprising and challenging architectural, historic, and artistic “hidden gems” that participants in the “O Say Can You See SoBo? Scavenger Hunt” pursued Nov. 7-8. Individuals, families and groups of friends fanned out across the peninsula on a warm, sunny weekend to track down the 26 gems.

The mermaids set into a rowhouse cornice were Stella Martinez’ favorite discovery. “So beautiful. I never would have thought to look up to see this architectural detail on this building. Now when I walk by, I will look up to see it.”

One of two mermaids watching over Light Street.

The Scavenger Hunt, with gems scattered from the Sharp-Leadenhall neighborhood in the west to Fort McHenry in the east, gave participants a chance to discover or re-discover different parts of the peninsula. For Jana Gauvey’s oldest son, the fort itself was a special find. “We don’t go there often because it’s a bit of a schlep from where we live. He loved the picnic area by the water and asked if we can go back next weekend just to enjoy it.”

The Stone family kids (plus friend Carter) at one of the artistic “gems” they discovered during the Scavenger Hunt. (Photo by Jacqueline Stone)

Forty-eight scavenger hunters entered the contest to win gift cards to a local eatery of their choice by matching photos of the 26 gems with locations on a map. Anna Danz was the grand prize drawing winner (Hersh’s). Fina Santa-Maria was the second prize winner (SoBo Café). And Bianca Ligon received a special prize for the first correct entry received with addresses of each location (SoBo Café).

The SoBo Scavenger Hunt was the third community activity sponsored by the Peninsula Post since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March. The first was the “Chalk Your Walk” #ChalkItUpSoBo extravaganza May 1-3 followed by the “Kick the COVID-19 Blues” #SoBo1000K on Memorial Day weekend.

If you didn’t get a chance to join the SoBo Scavenger Hunt, all the clues and maps are still available online whenever you’d like to take the challenge.

The prize drawing on Sunday, Nov. 8.
Jeffery catches the butterfly mural on W. Cross St. (Photo by Sarah Kulaga)

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