CityRace Brings Scavenger Hunts to LA

An alternative to the usual gathering with friends

Benjamin Jet

If meeting up with friends over a cup of coffee or for a movie night is getting old, fear not.

CityRace Urban Adventure Hunts released a fall/winter schedule Thursday that will have Angelenos scurrying around nine greater Los Angeles neighborhoods solving historical and cultural clues about the area.

For $35 per person, teams of two to four are entered into a three-hour race in the neighborhood of their choice – Chinatown, Laguna Beach, Pasadena, Culver City, Olvera Street, Santa Monica, Hollywood, Downtown Los Angeles and Little Tokyo.

“It is a really unusual and fun thing to do,” said the event’s creator John Hennessy. “Hopefully (people will) try one and come back and try another one.”

CityRace is an offshoot of Race/LA, a day-long scavenger hunt throughout the city of Angels a la reality show “The Amazing Race.” Race/LA began in 2004.

CityRace, which started in 2007, is Race/LA’s less physical alternative, instead focusing on brainpower. It also limits contestants’ playground to a single neighborhood.

Today, the event boasts anywhere from 10 to 40 or more teams per hunt.

At the start of the race each team is given a packet of clues varying in degree of difficulty. Each clue leads teams to a different location in the neighborhood. At every locale they are asked to answer a question to prove they’ve made it to the correct destination. Every correct answer receives a certain amount of points.

The team with the highest amount of points and that reaches the finish line before time runs out is the winner.

While there are a wide assortment of prizes for winners (movie tickets, gift cards and medals), Hennessy said the point of the event is to have fun.

And while clues in the hunts are based on the neighborhood, Hennessy said the event isn’t meant to be a history lesson.

He did add, however, that “people tend to walk away as if it were a side effect of it.”

Hunts are held throughout the year. To register for an upcoming CityRace hunt visit

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