$25 for entry to the Ultimate Urban Scavenger Race ($55 value)
Spurred on by a first-place award of $300, teams of two or more run helter-skelter around the city in a combination of a scavenger hunt and 5K race, exploring undiscovered corners of their city while solving strands of interconnected clues. Although being physically fit is a plus, quick wits and wise planning ultimately determine the winners, who receive a coveted entry in the national championship. After the race, all participants are invited to partake in an after party and awards ceremony, enjoying drink specials and music while additional prizes, such as best costume, are announced. Check the website and Groupon FAQ for more information.
Challenge Nation pioneered the urban-adventure race with a race season that includes visits to more than 35 cities across the country. Each scavenger hunt is personalized to the hosting city, exploring its many diverse neighborhoods with a series of clues that would test even the most skilled children’s-book detective. The teams—composed of at least two people—vie for a $300 first-place prize. The Amazing Race–style competition rewards quick wits and wise planning over physical fitness, so the best way to prepare is by doing logic puzzles while eating Funyuns and lounging in a La-Z-Boy. The top 50 teams qualify, the top five receiving free entry, to compete in the national championship, which rewards winning teams with more than $6,000 in cash prizes.