The campus is one of my favorite places to stroll in New Jersey, but my children are not very excited about strolling. They’ll willingly walk around downtown Princeton, if we stop at Halo Pub– the best ice cream shop in town. Sadly, they don’t share my interest in strolling around aimlessly.
But, for New Experience #14, we weren’t just strolling through one of the most beautiful campuses in the country. We were hunting for tigers. I found this little gem of an idea in New Jersey Family, a free little magazine that has lots of original ideas I have used.
So, armed with ice cream and a map of the campus, we began our search on a warm spring afternoon.
We didn’t even make it to the campus when we spotted our first tiger statue. We were only in Palmer Square, across the street from the campus. At that point, we decided to take a guess of how many more tigers we’d see in Princeton. Luke guessed 80, Leah guessed 20, and I guessed 10. I thought I had an unfair advantage because I had already read this guide on the tiger statues of Princeton and marked up our map with a few spots to look. I figured that we’d make it to a few buildings and find about 10 tiger statues before our ice cream melted.
I was very happy to be the one who was farthest from the actual number. Luke and Leah love scavenger hunts of any kind, and this was no exception. They found lots of tigers proudly perched in front of buildings and crouching over doorways. They noticed small tigers in places where a gargoyle would typically stand. They even went beyond looking for statues and found tigers on the many flyers tacked up on bulletin boards and lamp posts. They even spotted one on a T-shirt! It’s amazing how a little scavenger hunt can turn a stroll into a fun-filled adventure for my kids.
It was a lovely and leisurely afternoon walk. The kids really enjoyed looking for tigers, and I appreciated their enthusiasm. After we found 58 tigers, we headed out of the jungle…oops, I mean campus… and back to our car parked downtown.
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New Experience #9: Pie Eating Contest (also took place in Princeton)