All summer long, Olathe residents are encouraged to show off their selfie skills and explore the city at the same time. Residents are invited to participate in the city’s “Find the Sign” scavenger hunt. Entering the contest is as easy as having a camera and an eye for Olathe landmarks.
Every Wednesday, a blue Olathe Proud banner is placed somewhere in the city. A short video clue leading to the location is posted on the city’s Facebook and Twitter pages. Residents are encouraged to find the sign, take a selfie with it and post the photo to the city’s social media pages with hashtag OlatheProud for a chance to win prizes including T-shirts emblazoned with #OlatheProud.
Alicia Chavez, communications specialist to the city, said the contest evolved from the Olathe Proud hashtag that started about two years ago to positively highlight the community. The contest is growing in popularity. After the location is revealed, one winner is randomly chosen from the dozens of entries every week.
“There’s people who have been here for years doing the contest and there’s people who are new to the city using it as an opportunity to learn more about the city,” said Chavez.
The sign has appeared in locations like the Mahaffie Farmstead and Two Trails Park.
North Kansas City High School teacher Kevin O’Grattan first discovered the sign while running near Indian Creek Trail. O’Grattan moved from Florida to Kansas one year ago and says Olathe is exactly the type of community people want to live in. He encourages others in the community to look for the sign and participate in the contest.
“I’m fairly new to Olathe and the Kansas City area in general. It seemed like a good way to learn about the city,” O’Grattan said. “The wonderful people that work, live, and serve in our community has made me Olathe Proud.”
Kansas House of Representatives hopeful Leesa Gabel has made locating the sign from week to week a family affair. Gabel is running in the District 14 Republican primary. Olathe Proud selfies with her husband and two children can be found every week on the city’s social media pages.
“This has been a great stress release,” she said. “We know Wednesday night is our chance to find the sign and then get ice cream after.”
Gabel has been a resident of Olathe for more than 10 years and believes the contest is a great boost for the community.
“This is a fun way to discover our city, which is really huge when you think about it,” she said. “It gives us that small town feel in a sprawling metropolis.”