by Jamie

Only 50 Individuals, Families, or Teams can Play. 

Register and Pay by 5pm,  Monday, March 2, 2020 and get a 10 minute head start on key #1.
Register and Pay by 10am, Wednesday, March 4, 2020 and get a 8 minute head start on key #1
No Further Head Starts will be Granted, so Don't Delay!!!

What is the Hidden Keys game?

Grab your family, your friends, or head out solo and search Arroyo Grande for hidden keys that unlock treasure chests containing $1000.

When does it take place?

Sunday, March 22 from 1pm until 4pm or until all the hidden keys are found.

Where does it take place?

In the Village of Arroyo Grande between Mason Street and Wesley Street and Nelson St. and LePoint St.

How does it work?

Once registered we will invite you to join a private Facebook group.  Starting at 1:00pm on Sunday, March 22 and every 30 minutes thereafter until 3:30, we will post a series of clues that you will use to find the hidden keys.  If you find a hidden key, you simply bring it to the location attached to the key to unlock your treasure chest. Once each key is found we will update the Facebook group to notify you the key has been found and it's location so you know to stop looking for it.  We will also send out photos scavenger hunt challenges for the kids on your team 13 years or under to participate in randomly during the day to earn small prizes.

What types of clues do we need to solve?

To find each key, you will need to solve a series of clues that can be done in any order.  We will use a variety of scavenger hunt, escape room, picture clues, unscrambles, decipher codes, and logic puzzle techniques to guide you around the village and make it a fun and interesting day.  If you get stumped, a new hunt starts every 30 minutes so you can give up and move to the next key or continue searching for the previous key until we announce it was found.

What are the prizes?

There will be 5 hidden keys that unlock a treasure chest with $100 each and 1 hidden key that unlocks a treasure chest with $500.  Kids 13 and under who are playing with their families will also have a chance to win a few small prizes by participating in our photo scavenger hunt in between each hidden key clue.

How many people can play?

You may play as an individual, as family, or as team of 4.  The game is limited to 50 individuals, families, or teams to ensure a higher probability for finding a hidden key.

How many treasure chests are there and can I find more than one?

There are 6 total treasure chests and yes, you may find more than one and you do not need to stop playing once you have found a treasure chest.

What do I need to play?

A fully Charged Smart Phone with Data and Facebook.  Optional, to bring a portable battery charger along to ensure you don't run out of juice along the way.  We also suggest you bring along a notebook and pen that you may need to take notes, decipher messages, or jot things down. You should also bring along water and wear comfortable walking shoes as you will be trekking back and forth in the village during the 3 hours. If you find a hidden key, you will need to have the person who was registered bring the key and their id to the location printed on the key to claim their prize to ensure no one joined the game and played that was not registered to keep the game fair for everyone who did pay.  Finally, lets support our local merchants, bring along some spending money to grab a snack or drink along the way or purchase a souvenir to remember your special Hidden Keys moments.

What if I don't have Facebook?

This first round of Hidden Keys is being ran through Facebook.  If you do not have Facebook, stay tuned as we will develop alternate ways to join the game so everyone can play in the very near future but for now, this is a required option to play.

What if I have technical difficulty with my phone during the game?

Please come prepared with a backup phone to ensure you won’t lose time with technical difficulties. Once you are registered, we will add you to our private Facebook group. It is your responsibility to make sure you join the Facebook group and can see posts, if not, message us by Saturday March 21 at 9pm.  Worse case scenario, if you encounter technical difficulties during the game out of your control, you may text us at 760-937-5028 and we will be able to disclose our location and you can hand write the clues from our master list.

What is the recommended age for Hidden Keys?

You have to solve a set of clues to find the hidden keys. The clues can be done out of order for each key and some will be easier, and some will be harder, but the recommended age for the hunt is Middle School through Adult. You may wish to let your younger children help solve the easier clues for each key.  Children 13 and under who are playing along with their families will also have a chance to win small prizes throughout the game by participating in a photo snap scavenger hunt we post in between each clue to make this a fun family adventure. We will be developing future games in the very near future just for kids.

Do I need to drive to participate?

No, you will be walking all around the Village of Arroyo Grande to find the hidden keys. The game is 3 hours so please be prepared to do a lot of walking. How ever we will try to keep the clues for each key in the same area of the village so you are not walking from one end of the village to the other for each key.

Can I just look for the key that unlocks the $500 Treasure Chest?

Yes, it is last and announced at 3:30 but by looking for the first 5 keys you are learning how to play the game, how to navigate the clues, and may have a better chance of finding the final key if you participate in the previous hunts simply because you are familiar with the game. None of the pervious 5 key clues impact finding the final key.

How do I ensure I have a good time?

If you are playing with your family or with a team, just be sure to discuss the goal of your participation in Hidden Keys.  Are you going to hang out together, laugh, take pictures, grab some food, and explore the village leisurely as you try to find the hidden keys?  Or are you strategizing, not stopping for a drink or snack, competing to leave no stone unturned until you find a key?   If you have little ones in tow, this is especially important for them to understand.  Our goal is for families and friends to enjoy doing this together but we know some of you are also highly competitive so having a talk before and designating a team leader and rules to keep the game fun may be a good idea.  Also please remember, not everyone is going to find a treasure chest and you may go home feeling disappointed, but at the end of the day, if you had a great time, that is what is most important. We also limit the game to 50 individuals, families, or teams to ensure a higher probability of finding a key.

How did Hidden Keys start?

When I was in middle school I have vivid memories of tuning into the local radio station each morning on the drive to school to get the daily clue as to where the $100 bill was hidden in my small town.  I would daydream about the clue all morning instead of paying attention in math and could not wait to talk to my friends about where it could be hidden at break.  They gave another clue at noon and I vividly remember this girl Jenny in my class sneaking a pair of headphones and a radio walkman into science class each day trying to hear the clue so she could go looking on her way home from school.  I recently asked a friend who grew up in the same town as me if she remembered them and she did, and LOVED I wanted to recreate them here on the Central Coast.  I have been making scavenger hunts for my kids since they were very little and every time they have friends over they ask if we can do one.  We used to be big geocachers and have fallen away from it for a few years so we recently started geocaching again.  My kids and I were very disappointed to find most the caches were missing, in poor shape, and contained nothing but a penny or a worn-out sticker.   So we decided to make this Hidden Keys game to get families and friends out and about on the Central Coast and give them an opportunity to discover real hidden keys that unlock treasure chests of cash. This is the start of what we hope to be many fun adventures we create! Also, I am a Career Educator and I teach people to turn their passions into a way to earn money so our family is experimenting with this very concept and my 13 year old daughter and I hope to turn this into a side business for her to run locally long term all up and down the Central Coast.

Are you really giving away $1000 in cash?

Yes!  As long as at least 20 people register, we will hide keys to unlock $1,000 in cash!   If we have less than 20 people, families, and groups of 4 people register, we will have to cancel the game so be sure to share with everyone you know who may be interested.  If the game is cancelled we will let you know and refund your money but we anticipate selling out.

What if I register and can’t make it?

Registration is transferable but not refundable. You may contact us by 9pm Saturday March 21 and ask to be removed from the Facebook Group and Add a Friend to the Facebook Page instead, but we are not able to refund your registration given there are only 50 spots.

What other games do you offer?

Right now we only offer Individual Rock/Dino Digs for kids but we hope to add many more family fun games in the future.

Can I register with Inspire Funds?

We are an approved vendor for online purchases of products, but because there is a cash prize we are not accepting home school funds for this round.

What rules do I need to observe to play the game?

This is the most important thing of all. So please read in detail. If you do not observe the rules, you will be removed from the Facebook group and kicked out of the game without refund.

  1. You may not share the clues with people not registered in the game. This is to ensure you have a higher probability of finding a key and to make the game fair for everyone who has paid. Only you, your family, or your group of 4 may participate and search for the hidden keys.
  2. In order to respect the businesses in the village, clues for each key may be done in any order.  The idea is not to have a large number of participants congregating in one area, i.e. don't clump up and block traffic or loiter to block sidewalks.
  3. Follow all traffic and pedestrian laws. You won’t need to drive to play the game, you will be able to walk to find all the clues, but you must observe all traffic and pedestrian laws. Please be safe, use the crosswalks, and do not run or push. 
  4. Clues and keys have not been hidden inside shops or on residential property. We encourage you to shop in the village and support our local businesses, but none of the clues or keys are INSIDE. Likewise, there is no need for you to enter anyone’s personal property or yard.
  5. Do not stomp on the plants. Stay on all sidewalks and walkways and be respectful of the beautiful village. Please especially talk to your little ones about this.
  6. Be kind, courteous, and respectful to everyone playing the game, the shop owners, the tourists, and the community at large.
  7. No littering. Please make sure all your trash and recyclables get where they need to go.

How do I get my cash?

If you find a hidden key after solving the clues, you need to have the registered person in your party come to the location printed on the key to unlock the treasure chest.....after we check their ID and check to see they are registered.  This ensures only people who have registered are able to receive the prize and keeps the game fair for everyone. You are responsible for knowing your state and federal tax laws for prize earnings and to report accordingly.  You also agree to let Career Vision post your picture in our Facebook group to let others know the money has been found and received by a registered participant.

How do I register and pay?

You may check out at the link below which allows you to pay with PayPal but we also can process you manually if you just email $60 to Venmo or Paypal at Whatever is easiest for you.  You will get an email from us and from Facebook within 1-2 days with access to our private Facebook Group.

Register and Pay by 5pm,  Monday, March 2, 2020 and get a 10 minute head start on key #1.
Register and Pay by 10am, Wednesday, March 4, 2020 and get a 8 minute head start on key #1
No Further Head Starts will be Granted, so Don't Delay!!!