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Cache scare in Boulder, CO

 
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Mrs. Mizzou
Past MnGCA President


Joined: 31 Oct 2007

Posts: 601

PostPosted: Mon Apr 20, 2009 3:29 pm    Post subject: Cache scare in Boulder, CO Reply with quote

It wasn't a long story, so I just post rather than link:

Quote:
Geocache prompts Boulder school evacuation
By The Denver Post

A buried geocaching box prompted an evacuation of Fairview High School in Boulder today while officials determined what was in it.

A teacher called from the school at 1515 Greenbriar Blvd. at 11:40 a.m. today, after seeing "a man and a woman burying some kind of box near the stone sign in front of the school," a police news release said. They drove away in a cream-colored SUV with Nebraska license plates.

Officers went to the school and decided to evacuate the building while they investigated the box.

Students were moved to Southern Hills Middle School, at 1500 Knox Drive, and Fairview High School was closed for the rest of the day, police said.

Geocachers use handheld GPS devices to pinpoint hidden caches filled with trinkets.
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andrewmcc
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 29 Jul 2007

Posts: 996

PostPosted: Mon Apr 20, 2009 3:40 pm    Post subject: Re: Cache scare in Boulder, CO Reply with quote

Mrs. Mizzou wrote:
It wasn't a long story, so I just post rather than link:

Quote:
Geocache prompts Boulder school evacuation
By The Denver Post

A buried geocaching box prompted an evacuation of Fairview High School in Boulder today while officials determined what was in it.

A teacher called from the school at 1515 Greenbriar Blvd. at 11:40 a.m. today, after seeing "a man and a woman burying some kind of box near the stone sign in front of the school," a police news release said. They drove away in a cream-colored SUV with Nebraska license plates.

Officers went to the school and decided to evacuate the building while they investigated the box.

Students were moved to Southern Hills Middle School, at 1500 Knox Drive, and Fairview High School was closed for the rest of the day, police said.

Geocachers use handheld GPS devices to pinpoint hidden caches filled with trinkets.

Not good, considering what anniversary was today.
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LucidOndine
Past MnGCA President


Joined: 17 Jan 2006

Posts: 1931
Location: Under Some Rock

PostPosted: Mon Apr 20, 2009 3:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Queue SJ rant in 3, 2...
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Arcticabn
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 30 Nov 2003

Posts: 1846
Location: Lakeville, MN

PostPosted: Mon Apr 20, 2009 5:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The cache in question is GC1240D and has been in that location since 12 April 2007. It has been found some 106 times. It was hidden there by one of the teachers at the school. Oh and the plates were Nevada not Nebraska.

Quote:
BOULDER, Colo. — Editor's note: Police originally reported that the SUV had plates from Nebraska. The plates were actually from Nevada.

The middle-aged couple who set off a bomb scare at Fairview High School on Monday were apparently looking for a geocache hidden by the school’s history teacher.

Students were evacuated midday after another teacher noticed a man and a woman burying some kind of box near a stone sign at the front of the school. When the couple was confronted by the teacher, they were “incredibly vague and dismissive,” according to police, before driving away in a cream-colored SUV with Nevada plates.

A bomb squad was called in to investigate the box, and students were evacuated to Southern Hills Middle School before the squad determined the box was a geocache.

Traditionally, geocaching involved finding a hidden box containing a log book using a GPS. Now the sport, which has spread across the globe, includes using a GPS to find caches that are both real and virtual, ranging from boxes to riddles to places with good views. Hundreds of caches are logged in the Boulder area at www.geocaching.com.

A cache called “A Knight’s View” has been hidden at Fairview High for just over two years by Darrel Billington.

“My administration knew; I also got a district grant for it,” said Billington, who acknowledged that Monday, the 10th anniversary of the massacre at Columbine High School, was an “unfortunate” day to be digging around in front of a school.


Boulder Valley School District spokesman Briggs Gamblin said Monday afternoon that he did not yet know any details about how the geocache came to be hidden on school property. Police have not confirmed that the Nevada couple was looking for Billington’s box.

The description of the cache, left by Billington on the Web, reads:

“Here Ye All! Welcome to our Travel Bug Castle! Enjoy our pretty view! This is part of the geocaching Knights! It is our home. If you are one of us then find the cache. If you are not, welcome honorable Knights! Please enjoy ‘The View.’ There are many many muggles who would like to find the cache, be very careful!“

The Fairview mascot is the Knights. The term muggles, which was coined in the Harry Potter books to describe non-magical people, is used by geocachers to describe people who aren’t a part of the sport’s community.

Over its two-year life, at least 120 people have found the cache, signing the log book and swapping trinkets left in the box: a key chain for a plastic army man, a Sponge Bob figurine for a rubber ducky, a Scrabble tile for a King of Hearts.

But for some searchers, the site — well known on the Web site for being extremely busy with “muggles” — was not worth the trinkets.

“With the world situation today, I felt uncomfortable lurking around in front of the school … never liked these types of caches despite the nice intentios,” commented “parmachenee” on the Web site Dec. 23, 2007.

Billington and his geography class have also teamed up with the U.S. Geologic Survey in the past to create “Earth caches,” which take people on self-guided, GPS tours to learn about natural history.


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ArcherDragoon
Geocacher


Joined: 02 Nov 2007

Posts: 976
Location: Southeastern Minnesota

PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 7:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sounds like he had proper permission...but not everyone knew about it...oops on their part...

I do like how the spokesperson had no clue and yet it seems there was a clear paper trail for this cache...though, the two people that were originally confronted should have been more giving with information...should I get "caught", I always explain what I am doing...I even have those geocaching pamphlets from Geocache-U to help explain...
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spinowner
Geocacher


Joined: 25 Nov 2004

Posts: 582
Location: Plymouth, MN

PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 8:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

ArcherDragoon wrote:
...should I get "caught", I always explain what I am doing...


I strongly agree, if it's someone who has any kind of authority such as a cop, park worker, security officer, etc. If it's just someone who happens to be walking by I tend to be more vague to minimize the risk of compromising the hide.
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ArcherDragoon
Geocacher


Joined: 02 Nov 2007

Posts: 976
Location: Southeastern Minnesota

PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 9:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

spinowner wrote:
ArcherDragoon wrote:
...should I get "caught", I always explain what I am doing...


I strongly agree, if it's someone who has any kind of authority such as a cop, park worker, security officer, etc. If it's just someone who happens to be walking by I tend to be more vague to minimize the risk of compromising the hide.


Authority Figures...I usually show them what I was doing...mainly because they tend to ask...

"Normal"...everyday public...it usually stops at the handout...they just don't care enough anymore once they get something like that...
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bflentje
Geocacher


Joined: 29 May 2006

Posts: 3971

PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 11:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

spinowner wrote:
ArcherDragoon wrote:
...should I get "caught", I always explain what I am doing...


I strongly agree, if it's someone who has any kind of authority such as a cop, park worker, security officer, etc. If it's just someone who happens to be walking by I tend to be more vague to minimize the risk of compromising the hide.


I would just run as fast as I can. That should solve the problem. Razz
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Jam3s
Geocacher


Joined: 26 Oct 2008

Posts: 842

PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 11:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have been stopped THREE times in the last month while caching by police officers. I think that around here they all know what geocaching is and they seem to let you go right after you tell them what you were doing. Each of my contacts were under 3 minutes (one was only 35 seconds) and the officers were friendly.
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NeverSummer
Geocacher


Joined: 20 Feb 2009

Posts: 99

PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 11:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great reason to just not hide caches near schools, retirement homes, hospitals and the such. Even with permissions on that cache, it still was pretty silly to hunt a cache at a school during school hours.

Having spent a few years working in schools and dealing with many "campus security" issues. It is always questionable to staff--even those in the know--when someone is seen snooping on campus, let alone replacing an unknown box near the school.

Also, it is a bummer that there are alarmists that fear the worst whenever they see things like that. Also a big bummer that the teacher didn't make it clear to all parties involved that the cache existed. If I were the owner, it would have been worth a strong suggestion to not look for the cache during school hours. Seems like common sense might have help with all parties...save the law enforcement, who were just doing their jobs.
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spinowner
Geocacher


Joined: 25 Nov 2004

Posts: 582
Location: Plymouth, MN

PostPosted: Thu Apr 23, 2009 6:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This has been discussed before, but I think it's worth repeating that common sense should prevail when hiding a cache. An incomplete list of places I avoid includes schools, post offices (and mailboxes!), police stations and fire stations. I also don't like playground equipment. Please feel free to expand this list.
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