September 16 - 26

2015 Nebraska Treasure Hunt

What is it?

The Nebraska Treasure Hunt™ gives participants a fun, 10-day opportunity to find treasure, learn about Kearney’s history, and patronize local sponsors and local events. This years storyline is “The Trail Lives On!”, historical fiction centering around the Oregon Trail route and its impact throughout time.

Participants solve clues and earn Points to get them closer to finding hidden treasure tokens representing actual prizes of value. Example hiding locations might include a park, a trail, a museum, the UNK Campus, or some other public location.

 What are the prizes (“treasures”)?

Grand Prize

One $2,000 Grand Prize Treasure.

Top Points Earner

One $500 “Top Points Earner” treasure is awarded to one of the Top 10 highest Points earners.


Many smaller treasures valued at $100 each make up smaller hunts hosted throughout the event.

Points Leaders

How does it work?

Each day or two, a new Chapter of the storyline is published. A corresponding “X” is announced at the same time. That “X” marks the starting location for a new, smaller hunt for a treasure token representing a prize valued at approximately $100, such as a gift card.

What is the Kearney App? Do I need it to participate?

The Kearney App is a free, community-focused “smart phone” app created for the visitors and residents of Kearney. It helps users explore, learn, and shop Kearney. It is not required for you to use the app to find the treasures, however, it puts you at a greater advantage if you do. Some of the hunts encourage you to use features in the app to solve key clues. You need the app if you wish to earn Points.

Chapter One

“ . . . Something shiny caught Bob’s eye from under the old wooden floor in his shop in downtown Kearney. He worked up the loose nails of a few adjacent floorboards and popped them off with a small pry bar. He was surprised to discover a curious wood and leather box. He opened it. What he saw made his eyes light up and his heart pound . . .”

Story sponsored by:


Chapters and News



Epilogue Mountain Man waved to Bob and Kitty. He was about fifty yards away on an old foot path leading around Cottonmill Lake. “You figured it out!” yelled Mountain Man to Bob. The couple caught up to the rugged trapper. “So you're the legendary Mountain Man?” Kitty looked him over with a grin. “Are you…
Chapter 10 – Last chapter

Chapter 10 – Last chapter

Chapter 10 - Last Chapter “What did you say, Kitty?” said Bob again. “This tree is just not at that Chapter in its life where it is probably going to be flowing with cotton,” said Kitty.  “It can't be more than four years old.” Bob's head began to spin. He sat down and pulled out…
Chapter 9 – Lucky Number 4

Chapter 9 – Lucky Number 4

Chapter 9 - Lucky Number 4 Click! Startled, Bob snapped his head around to see the locked doorknob turning. The door opened. It was Kitty. “You scared the Charles Dickens out of me, Kitty!” said Bob. “I'm sorry, Bob.” “Don't worry, it was just a little scare.” “No, I mean, I'm sorry about everything. I…
Chapter 8 – If Walls Could Talk

Chapter 8 – If Walls Could Talk

Chapter 8 - If Walls Could Talk Bob looked everywhere. He looked in closets, pried back baseboard, looked through boxes, in between windows. Pretty much anywhere there was a wall in his shop, he was looking. After Mountain Man told him he was located in a historic building and that “The walls of that building…
Chapter 7 – Mountain Man, Again

Chapter 7 – Mountain Man, Again

Chapter 7 - Mountain Man, Again “So your lady wants to travel the Lincoln Highway, does she?” Mountain Man was positioned on the opposite end of the campfire, just outside his cabin. He carefully dumped the small sack of acorns into an old dutch oven. “I guess. It sounds fun and all, but I just…
Chapter 6 – Night Out

Chapter 6 – Night Out

Chapter 6 - Night Out “This is so much better than Mountain Man's turkey-leg-surprise,” said Bob as he devoured his meal by candlelight across from Kitty. He had decided to take her to her favorite Kearney restaurant to make up for all the time he had been away the last few days. “Why do you…