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Ochlockonee River Water Trail raised nearly $5,000 at its “Escape Room” fundraiser in Cairo Thursday.
The evening, held at the Cairo Womans Club, 6 p.m. until 8 p.m., included dinner, a silent auction, and the escape room “Escape from Zombie Park.” In the game, table mates became teammates and raced against the clock to solve puzzles and riddles with the goal of being the first within one hour to find a “key,” which would let them escape from the house of a mad scientist and his wife.
With just a few minutes left, one of the teams found the key inside a replica of a Victorian clock.
Ochlockonee River Water Trail collaborated with the Golden Triangle Resource Conservation and Development Council of Southwest Georgia for this event, a major source of funding for ORWT’s upcoming environmental conservation and community development projects in 2020.
The escape room event raised a total of $4,743 in tickets and silent auction purchases. Organization founder and current president Margaret Tyson thanked all sponsors and donors for their support, saying, “It was a success because of them.”
Tyson also specifically thanked the Grady County Lake Authority, the City of Cairo, and the Grady County Board of Commissioners. “All of them came and supported this event,” Tyson remarked.
Dinner was donated by Walmart, Delicious Delights, Mango Smile, Cairo IGA, Sun Stop Market, and Lannis Thornton Jr. Silent auction items were given by Center Drugs, Mr. Chick, Cairo Eye Care, Golden Triangle RC&D, I Can of Cairo, Care 360, Head 2 Toe, Brownworks, Tired Creek Iron Works, Redden’s Rustics, and Big Adventure Outfitters.
The money from the escape room, which Tyson says she hopes will become an annual event, will go to expand ORWT’s work in Grady County with a walking trail around Cairo, a paddle trail for Tired Creek Lake, and mile markers on the Ochlockonee River.
According to Tyson, Ochlockonee River Water Trail, Inc. is a registered nonprofit organization that was founded in 2017. It has since been involved in the community by hosting paddle trips down the Ochlockonee River, partnering with Keep Grady County Beautiful and Golden Triangle RC&D for cleanups, and building a kiosk at Hadley Ferry Landing with assistance from the Cairo High School FFA.