One-of-a-Kind Harry Potter: A History of Magic Apparates to NYC Museum

Watson Adventures Harry Potter NYHS

The world is full of children (and let’s face it, adults) who have glanced longingly at the sky, hoping to spot an owl winging its way to them, Hogwarts acceptance letter in its beak. An immersive new exhibit at the New-York Historical Society is built for them—and anyone else who’s ever enjoyed J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World.

“Harry Potter: A History of Magic” coincides with the release of a new book of the same name and combines artifacts from the British Library and the New-York Historical Society with pieces from Rowling’s archives and her publisher, Scholastic, an audio tour voiced by Game of Thrones actress Natalie Dormer, and a lot more. We visited the exhibit to bring you our impressions. (Hint: The whole thing is magical!)

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Should You Give Away Valuable Prizes in Team Building Games?

Watson Advetures Corporate Scavenger Hunt Winners

No. A pricey award for the winners—iPads, days off, $100 gift certificates, you name it—changes the object of the game in the minds of the hunters. For many or most of the participants, the objective changes from “have fun with my colleagues” to “win that iPad!”

At Watson Adventures, we recommend to our clients that modest, symbolic prizes are not just fine, they’re superior. We’ve been staging scavenger hunts for corporate groups since 1999, and we’ve seen clients give out all sorts of prizes—including, yes, airline tickets for the entire winning team. Here’s what we’ve learned and what we advise clients. Read More

So Spooky! Great Scavenger Hunt Team Names for Halloween Fun

Watson Adventures Halloween Scavenger Hunt Team Names

Welcome to October, the spookiest time of year! On a Halloween scavenger hunt with Watson Adventures, you’ll find ghostly locales, haunting history, and chilling tales all over the country.

Of course, you can’t go huntin’ ghosts without an awesome team name. A clever name brings your team together while you track down long-lost spirits—and it might earn you some extra points! Here are just a few of the great names other teams have come up with.

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Was This President Truly a “Human Iceberg”?

Watson Adventures Benjamin Harrison Portrait

Turning Up the Heat on Benjamin Harrison

History really only remembers Benjamin Harrison, our 23rd president, by his rather unfortunate nickname: “The Human Iceberg.” That’s how you’ll see the man referred to when you encounter him on our scavenger hunts at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C.

And sure, the guy was stiff. He was said to greet people in an unusually formal manner, and he always wore gloves to shake your hand. In his stern presidential portraits he looks more like the man voted “Most Likely to Give You a Right Spanking.” He was some one-term afterthought sandwiched between two Grover Cleveland administrations…so, doesn’t a man like that deserve his Batman-villain nickname for all eternity?

It turns out he doesn’t. Harrison wasn’t cold; he was actually almost cool—and as a human being, he was warm to boot.

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How to Turn Organizing Your Home into a Scavenger Hunt

Watson Adventures Jeni Aron Organizing

Organizing your home can be fun! Improbable, but true. Like so much in life, it’s all about how you look at it. And an expert on the subject is here to tell you one easy trick: Treat home organizing like a scavenger hunt.

Professional organizer Jeni Aron is the Clutter Cowgirl and a contributor to the new book The Real Simple Method to Organizing Every Room: And How to Keep It That Way. She was also one of Watson Adventures’ earliest all-star hunt hosts. In a delightful-yet-practical mash-up, Jeni has five tips for completing your own de-cluttering scavenger hunt.

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Dogs in Art: Can You Match the Puppy to the Painting?

Watson Adventures Dog Painting Close-UpIf there are two things on earth we love, it’s dogs and art. And wouldn’t you know it, famous painters have always loved combining the two. 

With that in mind, here’s a fun little match game for you. Below are six close-ups of dogs, and then the full paintings you can find them in. See if you can pair the close-up with the painting we borrowed it from. And don’t worry—this isn’t a stumper. It’s more of an excuse to look at beautiful paintings featuring man’s best friend.

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Art in the Dark: 8 Awesome After-Hours Museum Parties

Awesome After-Hours Museum Parties

Museums are national treasures. To visit a museum, be it for a casual visit or a fun scavenger hunt, is to commune with the natural history of the planet and the greatest cultural and artistic achievements of its peoples.

Museums are also a great place to party, dude! In the unending quest to reach more minds (and wallets), museums all around the country are throwing after-hours soirees, shindigs, and shenanigans for adults who like some culture with their wine. Here are a few of our favorites.

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Future Imperfect: Climate Change at Museums Around the World

Watson Adventures Climate Change at the MuseumThe approach of Labor Day weekend marks the unofficial end of a summer of weather extremes—including unprecedented rainfall in the Northeastern U.S., record-breaking heat waves on four continents, and the largest wildfire in California history. 

It should come as little surprise, then, that museums around the world are starting to focus more on the changing climate and its potential effects on the planet’s future. From a new exhibit in one of New York’s most famous museums to a time-traveling experience in Rio, here are a few of the ways museums are addressing climate change.

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11 Art Memes That Perfectly Sum Up the Misery of August

Watson Adventures Art Memes August MiseryFor many of us, the eighth month is the cruelest month. Summer is both unbearably hot and yet terrifyingly close to ending. The sun’s blazing, humidity’s rising, school’s looming. If you’re not sweaty and gross at any given moment, it’s probably because you’re freezing to death in your office.

August is rough, and these 11 art memes are all of us this month. See how many of these you can relate to.

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Drinks with a View: 21 of the Best Rooftop Bars in the Country

Watson Adventures Best Rooftop Bars

From museum scavenger hunts to challenging escape games, adventures are a thirsty business. It’s only natural to head out afterward to toast your victory or to rehash your favorite parts of the game. This being summer, of course, you should really enjoy your post-hunt libations outside!

From glamorous hotel rooftops to the open-air bars at museums—like the rooftop of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, above—we’ve rounded up some of our favorite outdoor bars in the seven cities with Watson Adventures scavenger hunts available to the public

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