On the Run: Sleuthing Through DC’s GO Urban Adventure Race

Yoda & the E Street Band solve the yoga clue.

Yoda & the E Street Band solve the yoga clue and found Lululemon Georgetown. Courtesy of GO Urban.

Where is Kilroy? Do you know?

We sure didn’t, my intrepid teammate and I, when we embarked on the GO Urban Adventure Race, a nationwide series that launched Saturday in DC. The way it works is that your two-person team receives a series of text messages with clues to 12 GO Points around town. Once you get to the GO Point, you have to text back the answer to the clue. Then you’ll receive another clue. You have to take a picture of your team at each GO Point, and often you have to find something there that’s specific and elusive — such as Kilroy.

Turns out his cartoon face peeps out from behind a golden service gate at the National World War II Memorial, near the Delaware pillar. He’s not prominent, to say the least. When repeated circling of the monument in the hot summer sun hadn’t disclosed his location, I headed to the information booth while Mark began working the Blackberry. Two attendants sat at the booth. When I asked for Kilroy, one all but stroked his chin while answering slowly, “Kilroy is near water, and gold….” The other caught the look I gave him and cut to the chase with actual directions. When I turned from the booth, Mark was already waving me to the right spot. Clue solved.

Thank goodness. At the starting area, I had felt a little intimidated while watching other teams. Several were wearing backpacks bulging with…what? Laptops? GPS devices? Special equipment to tap databases at the CIA? All we had were a two-year-old cell phone, a half-charged Blackberry and our, uh, wits. Continue reading