The fabulous members of Cemetery Crawl 9 were up early Sunday morning and headed off to breakfast with their teams. Some of them met up at Mr. D’z Route 66 Diner in the presence of a not so nourished Elvis mannequin. Coffee talk at the table was about an unusual awakening about 3:00 AM in the morning when a good number of the crawlers heard “children laughing and frolicking” in the El Trovedore Motel parking lot. We will later learn that “hearing” children in the parking lot of the motel has been an ongoing phenomenon for many years. These ghostly children are never seen but often heard by staff, visitors, and is a part of local lore. But, now it was time to gas up the vehicles, load the bags, and meet in the parking before heading out for another full day of locating cemeteries on the Arizona roadways. The official second day group photo was snapped—the teams looked determined to win!
After a quick briefing, Debe handed the first clue envelopes of the day over to John and Sally and she disappeared to the next cemetery. Teams were instructed to drive a few blocks through Kingman to Mountain View Cemetery. Teams quickly solved the poetic clues written in their envelopes. The team leaving the cemetery in first place was The Walkers. The Twisted Minds were second, and the Guided Ghostly Trio left in third place.
From the cemetery the teams were ask to pose for a picture the historic and very haunted Hotel Brunswick with its secret underground tunnels. A long twenty mile detour to the ghost old mining town of Chloride was now ahead of them. Teams were asked to look for an interesting fence of artwork as they entered town. Teams drove south of town on an old dirt road in search of the Chloride Cemetery that spreads out over barren desert. There they placed US Flags on the grave of a veteran who had miner picks in the shape of a cross as his marker. On the way back into town, teams posed at one of those old fashion carnival cutout signs depicting a cowboy and saloon girl.
The detours led them back in the direction of Kingman with a stop at the ghost town of Santa Land where teams were asked to pose outside the neglected North Pole tourist stop. Onward they drove, heading to Wikieup to pose by the Snoopy Rocket Ship that welcomes travelers to town. The detours took them to the Wikieup Cemetery where they placed flowers on the grave of Rose Kayser and took a puzzle challenge. As each team arrived, they placed two pieces of the puzzle on the ground forming a picture. The last team to enter the cemetery was asked to photographed the completed puzzle, gathered the pieces, and bring them to the next pit stop for a funny money prize. This was one time when being last paid off.
Next, teams photographed the Nothing Sign and stopped in the Joshua Tree Forest which is pretty much in the middle of nowhere!
Teams approached another old ghost town cemetery near the gold mining town of Congress, Arizona. The Congress Cemetery is known to be haunted—ghosts were seen walking the perimeter of the grounds during Cemetery Crawl 2. This time teams spent the early afternoon seeking the tombstone poem clue written in their instructions. Leaving in first place was Cave’s Crypt Keepers, followed by Grey Parliament in second. Third place was The Walkers!
Little did the teams know, but Debe decided to throw in an old “Amazing Race” tactic to get the teams all timed together again in order to make the last leg of the race fair and square. Teams now had to travel into the old western mining town of Wickenburg, Arizona. Along the way they laid flowers at the grave of Elizabeth Hudson at the Garcia Cemetery, posed for a school picture at the old red Garcia School, took a team picture at the statue of a miner leading a donkey, and made a secret wish at the old wishing well in the park. Tension mounted as each team gathered together in the Chaparral Ice Cream Shop and waited to snatch their printed cash register receipt indicating their ice cream purchase was made after 2:30 PM.
Now all teams were headed to the Morristown Cemetery located 11 miles east of Wickenburg. Sally and John were waiting to check their ice cream purchase time as the teams searched the cemetery with their last poetic clues. To the team’s dismay, they were not handed envelopes at the completion of this leg of the race. They were handed the dreaded EGG containing a jigsaw puzzle with the directions to the final destination! Cave’s Crypt Keepers completed the clue in First place, Twisted Minds were in second, and The Walkers were in third.
But it doesn’t end here! You are not the winner until you make it to the finish line. Sometimes putting the dreaded egg puzzle will change the course of the entire Crawl, and it certainly was the case in CC 9 as well!
Now it was a race to the finish line to the Roadrunner Saloon in New River, Arizona! Debe and Kenton, along with guests Dale and Red were holding their breath to see just who the big winner was going to be! Can you guess who was the big winner? A great time was had by all at the “After the Crawl” dinner and awards party. Goody bags were presented to the winning teams while they enjoyed their victory meals and snacks.
So, until next year, drive safe and be sure to stop at each and every cemetery you see! Watch for Cemetery Crawl 10 in April 2015!
FIRST PLACE: The Walkers
SECOND PLACE: The Ghostie Geckos
THIRD PLACE: The Twisted Minds
MOST FUNNY MONEY: The Ghostie Geckos (thanks to spotting 24 FROGS on the road!)
FOURTH PLACE: Cave’s Crypt Keepers
FIFTH PLACE: Grey Parliament (who made a wrong turn leaving the Morristown Cemetery--oops!)
SIXTH PLACE: Guided Ghostly Trio
Congrats to all the teams who completed this adventure!! See you next year!
The MVD Ghostchasers would love to have a production team film Cemetery Crawl 10 in April 2015 for a fun Halloween reality special. The Amazing Cemetery Crawl, an annual event hosted by the MVD Ghostchasers, takes ghost hunters and cemetery lovers on a road trip through Arizona following rhyming clues, stopping at cemeteries, historic detours, and many tasks and duties to earn their way to winning prizes. Along the way, contestants learn about haunted sites, back road cemeteries, famous gravesites, and enjoy an evening in a haunted location. This exhausting 36 hour road rally is unlike anything else in Arizona. The locations are amazing, the road trip hilarious, and the participants become seriously competitive. This is a great opportunity to capture something rarely seen--ghost hunters having playful fun in the backdrop of the picturesque Arizona desert and its quaint ghost towns.
Contact: Debe Branning at firstname.lastname@example.org
“The Amazing Cemetery Crawl” copyright 2005 MVD Ghostchasers