Entertainment on a Saturday morning


Moonshine Open Treasure Hunt

This Labor Day weekend finds us on the way to a farm just west of Berea, Kentucky.

This is the annual date for the Moonshine Open Treasure Hunt. This is one of the better seeded metal detector hunts we attend. I think it is the fourth time we have gone there.

Like other seeded hunts, the entrants pay a fee to participate.

The organizers take this money, convert it to silver dimes and other old coins, and plant these items in various fields.

They get a lot of local businesses and other donors to give them prizes for the hunt.

At designated times, all of the attendees line up around the field and wait for the starter signal to begin.

At the start, metal detectors start swinging and folks start digging the various targets to find what was buried.

Any coins found are kept by the participant.

Occasionally, the target is not a coin, but a token.

These metal targets have a number that corresponds with a prize at the registration table.

This prize could be a wide variety of items — a hat, silver dollar, detector earphones or even a brand new metal detector.

There are usually three or four separate hunts each of the two days during the event.

One hunt is entirely silver dimes, another might be all presidential dollars, another may be old-type coins, Indian head pennies, buffalo nickels, V nickels, wheat pennies and others. Usually these hunts have assorted tokens sprinkled through the field.

The Moonshine always has two special hunts each year, including a women only hunt.

Another special one is a Civil War relic hunt.

Like the women only hunt, there is an extra fee to enter this event, but almost everyone will get in on this one.

Civil War round balls, Minie balls, buckles, and a wide variety of other relics are planted on the hillside.

Someone might even find a belt buckle or a cannonball. This hunt is one of the reasons our grandson, Benjamin, always goes with us to this hunt.

He has a large Civil War collection he has entered in competition several years during his 4-H career.

Another reason we go to this event is to meet the other people attending.

We have friends who we only see at this type of event.

Some we have known for 40 years but don’t get to see often.

A couple friends are from Virginia, several are from Ohio, one lives in Texas, but was originally from Anderson.

All of these folks have donated Civil War relics to Benjamin for his collection, and even as a youngster, his knowledge of this conflict makes him a welcome addition to group talks with these older experts.

Other participants are from many other states: Florida, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Arkansas, Illinois, Tennessee, Alabama, and more.

This event keeps getting bigger each year as word gets around that this hunt is a good one.

A lot of us who attend these functions are getting older.

Some are in their 80s and even 90s.

Many are slowing down but still able to find enough to make it a fun weekend.

Then, there are those like me.

I will hit 76 this month and still pretend I can keep up with the young guys.

My back hurts all the time, but I keep in practice by bending over and picking up dropped pennies in the local parking lots.

I used to go down on one knee to dig a coin, but if I do that now, my legs are so weak I can’t stand back up. Hence the bending over.

As I got older, Susie took away my snow shovel. (I really liked shoveling snow.)

Then, last year, she took away my ladder.

That didn’t bother me much because I couldn’t climb it anyway.

So far, she hasn’t taken away my detector. I told her if she did, I would take away her fishing poles. I think I’m safe for a few more years.

Rich Creason is an award-winning outdoors and travel writer whose work has appeared in local, regional, national and international publications for 40 years. Born in Anderson, he is a graduate of Markleville High School. He lives in South Madison County with his wife, Susie. He may be contacted at [email protected].

No posts to display