1st Annual GeoWoodstock


June 21, 2003

Louisville, KY


Attended Logs: 154  (Event was legitimately logged up to 5x per attendee. Times were different then...)

Committee Representative: Southpaw

In 2003, the seeds of GeoWoodstock were planted  when Geocaching was a much smaller sport.  In 2002, the race to a thousand finds took over two years running over many states every weekend and only a handful had achieved it. Many of these "high find" cachers from different areas somewhat knew of each other - logbooks were less full then and they were on similar circuits - and began loosely keeping in touch with each other.  "Hey, buddy, I see your find count didn't go up this weekend.  You OK?" "Yeah, my brother just got married...I'll catch up!"  In a time when hundreds of finds put you at the top of the leaderboard (there was a leaderboard...) one of these cachers, Joe Armstrong, JoGPS, picked Louisville, KY a central location for the "big numbers" people to meet and worked with Show Me The Cache for ground recon to choose Waterfront Park.  The idea of inviting cachers from hundreds of miles away specifically to talk about geocaching was new. Seven of the top ten finders in the world[1] were able to make the event, so this event developed a reputation about being for "numbers people" when in reality, it was about people sharing their joy of the same hobby and sharing their experience of a hike to ammo box in the woods hundreds of miles from their respective homes.

The event itself was humble. The park was chosen for proximity to the I-64 overpass so we could continue to talk, should it rain, as well as easy walking access to park snacks and nearby eateries.  The cache page encouraged you to " pick up your happy meal on the way" so you'd have a trinket to exchange later in the day.  

Probably forty to fifty people drifted in and out that day, though the "found it" logs show more than that at a glance.  "Pocket caches" (now prohibited) were passed around through the course of the day to encourage everyone to meet each other.  The theme of a "hippy" event where everyone just shared their adventures and grooved with each other came through in the names of thee pocket caches which included "Peace" and "Love" as did Joe's signature catch-phrase, "Tooooo Coooool". Many attendees brought and wore tie-dye shirts to support that theme. Even on the first cuts of the cache page, Joe called it "1st Annual GeoWoodstock" to promote the idea that and event like this should be held again.

[1] BruceS, The Lil Otter, Show Me The Cache, CCCooper Agency, Southpaw, robertlipe, JoGPS.  Each had just over a thousand finds during this event.