Pioneer Ridge Nature Area

Pioneer Ridge offers a “great toilet paper hunt” beginning Monday.

OTTUMWA — Staying active, at a distance from others, and finding toilet paper are all challenges right now. Pioneer Ridge may have an answer.

On Monday, the conservation board began “the great 2020 toilet paper hunt.”

Naturalist Annette Wittrock said they will be hiding toilet paper around the conservation board area and giving clues as to where the toilet paper may lie.

“All you need to do is follow the clues to find it,” the conservation board’s Facebook post said. Public attendance will not be limited, but social distancing will be stressed. Safety, Wittrock said, will not be enforced. She said the board is confident that players will follow the CDC guidelines for social distancing and health. Teams made up of families are eligible to play. People should read the rules given on Facebook.

Upon finding the bath tissue, a person may choose to make the roll of toilet paper with them or ask for “the sur-PRIZE.” A person may not have both.

In order to be eligible to win the scavenger hunt, a person must be the first to take a selfie with the “great roll of toilet paper” and post it to the board’s Facebook page. If the person chooses to leave their toilet paper, they must leave it in the container where they found it. If they would rather have the “sur-PRIZE,” they must state that with the photo they post.

Since all of the conservation board buildings are closed to the public, the board will reply via Facebook during business hours to coordinate a way for the person to get their prize.

While the Wittrock and the board understand the severity of the virus, they simply want to offer fun in the midst of hardships.

“This is a time where everyone is worked up — this is a good way to calm everything,” Wittrock said. “Nature is the best for social distancing and healthy for minds and bodies. We just want the public to have a good time in spite of everything going on.”

Chiara Romero can be reached at


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