Great Urban Plastic Pink Flamingo Caper

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A madcap gathering that took place on October 1, 2005 in Leominster, MA at the National Plastics Center & Museum and the surrounding Leominster area

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

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Early birds catch the Event Stamp, carved by The Clue Guru

The morning of the gathering was a cool one. The Lazy Letterboxer (Deanne), The Letterboxing Ham (Dave) and Sue & I arrived shortly after 8am the morning of the gathering, Saturday, October 1, 2005. Much to our surprise, there was a small group already assembled there.

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The waiting line for the event stamp and clue dossiers

After setting up a few tables on the sidewalk for the event stamp, raffle tickets, boxing bands and clue dossiers, the parking lot really started to fill up. Boxers began arriving with beaming faces full of anticipation for the pending hunt! Really - most were half asleep, but the crisp autumn morning helped jolt them into reality!

At 9am sharp, and not a moment before, I began handing out clue dossiers. By about 9:30, everyone was on the road. And what surprises awaited them! Deanne and Dave had arranged for non-letterboxing friends of theirs to portray all of the detectives that matched the stamps that I had solicited from carvers from around the country! Each dossier contained 1 clue out of the 14 stops involved. Boxers would receive a clue to the next box, after they had met their first, real life detective~

Some of the wonderful detectives who were on the case during this hunt for Percival, Luvvy's pink plastic pet Flamingo:

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Magnum, PI looking ever-so-cool

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Ever-ready-to-serve Della Street and Dick Tracy's Tess Truehart
await word from their respective bosses!

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Brother William, praying that Percival is found

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Inspector Clousseau poses with the adorable Pink Panther and detectives-in-training

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Jessica Fletcher, poised at her typewriter, as she bangs out
a short story about the missing Percival

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Perky Nancy Drew and a well-coiffed Trixie Belden halt their investigation to play to the camera

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The lovely Nora and Nick Charles pose behind the counter of their agency

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Luvvy Huffington poses in the parlor of her stately Victorian mansion in old Leominster

As the boxers made their way around Leominster, their job was to ask each detective they met the words that would bring them the detectives signature stamp - "Do you know a good detective?" After obtaining the detectives signature stamp, it was up to the individual boxer to pay attention for clues or ask questions that would lead to bonus stamps - as each of the private eyes had at least one bonus to be had by the keenest of boxers.

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The empty third floor meeting room, ready and waiting for the Potluck and afternoon festivities

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The Letterboxing Ham used his charms to sell raffle tickets and boxing bands

Boxers who had finished the caper began arriving at the 3rd floor meeting room by 1pm. A great buffet was ready and waiting, but after they bought a raffle ticket, made a donation or bought a letterboxing wrist band from Dave, The Letterboxing Ham.

Congrats go out to two letterboxers who reached their F1000 during this event: Veronica, of Tony & Veronica, and Corinna, the Engraver's daughter. We hope you both did the happy dance.

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The real McCoys - official Don Featherstone pink plastic flamingos
These were a door prize to be given to an unsuspecting letterboxer!

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The exchange table which was never vacant

After the buffet, our surprise guest arrived, Don Featherstone, designer of the pink plastic flamingo. The Letterboxing Ham had arranged for Don and his wife to stop by so that they could present the door prize to an unsuspecting letterboxer. Among other items, each clue dossier held a Tip Sheet which had a pink flamingo at the top of the sheet. I had printed only 1 Tip Sheet with a color version of the flamingo - the rest were just printed in black ink. Once I announced that the winner was the holder of the color verison of the door prize, we all found out that Team Randalstik were the winners!

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Team Randalstik, on left, waits while Don Featherstone, on right, autographs both flamingos. Dave, The Letterboxing Ham is in the center

Like all gatherings, the success lies in those that work as a team in order to pull off such an event:

Special thanks go to -

Deanne, The Lazy Letterboxer: For the concept, the coordination and all of your hard work. We all know this was your gathering! You were the driving force behind this event and your energy helped me so many times. (Psshhhhh!)

Dave, The Letterboxing Ham: For the running around, contacting Don Featherstone and the myriad of tasks that you accomplished. (Letterbox!)

The Detectives: You are sincerely a tribute to friendship. You amazed the letterboxing public that non-letterboxers would give up a gorgeous Saturday afternoon to take part in such an event. We never could have done it without each and every one of you. All of you done Deanne and Dave proud!

Ginger Blue: For your terrific map and directions to each event. We never heard of anyone getting lost - thanks to the fine job you did. (Looks like twice was a charm!)

The Carvers: You guys are an incredible bunch. I sent you an email and the responses came back from all over the country - Oregon, Maryland, Virginia, New York, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Connecticut and more. Without those wonderful images, the detectives would have had no one to portray!

MayEve and Wolfy: Thanks for your contributions of logbooks and LBNE patches that you contributed to the event's raffle.

The Gathering Attendees: Special thanks to all of you for participating in this event. Your thanks, emails and talk list posts have been overwhelming. We are so pleased that you appreciated this new approach to an event. We had about 110 letterboxers from as far away as Florida! Other attendees came from NJ, NY, NH, ME, MA, RI, and CT.

Listing of Stamps and Carvers:

Event Stamp
- Seth
Dr. Henry Lee - Alafair
Loveday Brooke - Alexis Carrington
Nancy Drew - Amanda from Seattle
Trixie Belden - Turtle McQ
Monk - Catbead
Hercule Poirot - Choi
Jessica Fletcher - Chrissy
Handcuffs, knife, fingerprint, gun - Cherokee Rose
Magnum PI - Der Mad Stamper
Brother William - Tempus Fugit
Sherlock Holmes - Gingerblue
Jane Austen - Clueless
Nick & Nora Charles - Sewsobizzy
Charlie Chan - Lock Wench
Hercule Poirot (Black Coffee) - MayEve
Perry Mason - MayEve
Nick Danger, PI - Scarab
Dick Tracy - Mark Pepe
Sam Spade - Mark Pepe
The Maltese Falcon - the lazy letterboxer
Joe Friday's Badge - Steve of Steve & Heidi
Inspector Gadget - Tony (of Tony & Veronica)
Penny & the Brain - Tony (of Tony & Veronica)
The Hardy Boys - Uneksia
Inspector Clouseau, Pink Panther, Biting Dog - the lazy letterboxer
Miss Marple - the lazy letterboxer