Welcome to CoolerCrew.com. While our "big show" has always been the annual Pioneer Press Treasure Hunt during the St. Paul Winter Carnival, we keep track of over 100 treasure hunts associated with various festivals throughout Minnesota and Western Wisconsin. We are your one stop shop for all things treasure hunt! Apart from this site as a reference for current and past hunt information, we have other resources available as well:

  • The Water Cooler, Our forums; our primary discussion site. A significant number of Coolerheads prefer this format for discussion rather than a place with hundreds of topics where you have to keep track of each one. With Ableminds crashing, we figure it's time to get it working here. 
  • Our Treasure Hunt discussion group on Facebook. 
  • Our Facebook group for discussing things not related to the treasure hunt.
  • St. Paul Car Tag, a fun little game that we play when we're not looking for medallions.

You'll find that there isn't a lot of discussion in the Facebook group. Mostly clues as they come out for various hunts, and events like our annual Pre-dig Gig and Rehash Bash. Most of that can be found right here within this site. There tends to be a lot more discussion, particularly during the Pioneer Press hunt on Ableminds, or out in the park du jour during other hunts. Have a look around and feel free to join us. Hunt kickoffs, pity parties, and rehashes are always open to anyone who wants to show up!

And if you run into someone in the park and you want to know if they're a Coolerhead, just holler "you dig?". 

21st Annual Cooler Crew Rehash Bash

Sunday, February 11, 2018 - 12:00 to 16:00

21st Annual Cooler Crew Rehash Bash
Sunday, February 11, 2018
Newell Park
900 Fairview Ave N
St Paul, MN 55104

20th Annual Cooler Crew Pre-Dig Gig

Saturday, January 20, 2018 - 19:00 to 23:45

20th Annual Cooler Crew Pre-Dig Gig
Joseph's Grill (in the banquet room)
140 South Wabasha Street
Saint Paul, MN 55107

Once again the annual Cooler Crew Pre-Dig Gig will be held at Joseph's Grill, in the banquet room, on Wabasha. 

ares's picture

Landmarks and Milestones

December. Its that time of year when we all start thinking about the holidays:

  • Hanukkah
  • Festivus
  • Christmas
  • New Year's
  • Medallion Hunt
  • Winter Carnival
  • Super Bowl

You get the idea. For me that means trying to spend some time doing stuff for this web site, always frantically hoping I can get something new added before the hunt and the Carnival, knowing full well that if I don't, it'll be there waiting for me next December (although I am going to commit to getting the Able Minds archive into this site before the hunt). It always does, and I don't mind. But as I get myself into that particular mindset, I find myself poring over the site statistics. This year, I've come across several interesting landmarks and milestones that we've hit this year.

ares's picture

Reflections on the 2017 Hunt

As February begins, and the 2017 Winter Carnival and Treasure Hunt are behind us, I think it an appropriate time to reflect on the past hunt, the fact that the Cooler Crew has been around for 20 years now (in person versus just online), and what's in store for the future.

The 2017 Hunt

Wow. Just wow. After back to back years outside of the city, there was a lot of speculation that the medallion would have to be back in St. Paul this year. The masses on the Pioneer Press boards were visibly agitated after Snail Lake was followed up by Bald Eagle/Otter Lake, which came on the heels of Tony Schmidt only 3 years earlier, since it is after all the St. Paul Winter Carnival, not the Ramsey County Winter Carnival. If 2015-2016 were unprecendented, 2017 was one for the books. Ma Press hid the puck in Keller Park, leaving the city for three consecutive years, and when including Tony Schmidt, leaving it four out of the last six years. As of this moment, a full half of the hunts in the 2010's have been outside of the city.

When you think about it though, it is rather necessary. With thousands of people searching the clues would have to be spectacularly (and disappointingly) vague in order to have a longer hunt in a smaller park, since we all know far too much about the parks in St. Paul. We'd have nine clues of obscure references around the park, one clue of street names, one clue saying this is the park, and finally the x marks the spot. That's not the makings of a fun hunt. At the same time, we know way too much about the "prime" hunt parks (Highland, Como, Hidden Falls, Crosby, Cherokee, Phalen, Indian Mounds, and Battle Creek) to have an effective hunt in one of them either. And if one of them were used, hunters would be complaining about how Como is overused. Yes, Highland is overdue, but so are Phalen, Crosby, and Beaver Lake for that matter.

20th Annual Cooler Crew Rehash Bash

Sunday, February 5, 2017 - 12:00 to 15:00

20th Annual Cooler Crew Rehash Bash
Sunday, Febrauary 5, 2016
The Wellstone Center
179 Robie Street East
Saint Paul, MN 55107

19th Annual Cooler Crew Pre-Dig Gig

Saturday, January 21, 2017 - 18:00 to 23:45

19th Annual Cooler Crew Pre-Dig Gig
Saturday January 21, 2017
Joseph's Grill (in the banquet room)
140 South Wabasha Street
Saint Paul, MN 55107

diggorius rex's picture

2016 D-Rex & D-Ng Medallion Hunt Kickoff

Saturday, October 22, 2016 - 16:00 to 19:30

The Annual D-Rex & D-Ng Medallion Hunt:
A Ten Clue Hunt, officially starting October 22nd

2016 Coldest's Lost Treasure Hunt Kickoff

Saturday, May 7, 2016 - 14:00 to 16:00

Shamrocks Irish Nook
995 7th St W
Saint Paul, Minnesota 55102

Come hang out and grab a late lunch with the crew! You can pay me in person here at the event if you want to register for the hunt. Clue release will be at 3pm, then 6pm daily after that.


Cooler Crew -- A History

During the 1990's, the St Paul Pioneer Press opened online discussion forums. These forums were called Water Coolers. The forums had discussion topics related to sports, politics, news, and current events. Each year, the Pioneer Planet — the online section of the Pioneer Press — opened a discussion forum as a media for hunters to discuss the clues for the Winter Carnival Medallion Hunt.

During the earlier years, one might find a few hundred posts during the hunt. As more hunters had computers, those numbers jumped. From 1997 to 1998, the number of posts increased from the hundreds to the 5-digit thousands. It was during the 1998 hunt the Cooler Crew was born.

The community spirit and teamwork displayed in the Pioneer Press Medallion Hunt thread was inspiring. The group of hunters found themselves at the end of a hunt not wanting to let go of new friendships and the camaraderie found on the Water Cooler board. The idea emerged to do what anyone would do in the middle of winter in Minnesota. A picnic in Cherokee was planned - the first Rehash Bash!

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