TREASURE-HUNTING CITY GAME IN TARGÓWEK
Edited on26 May 2021
Warsaw, as one of European cities, has a long list of attractions to visit by the travellers. The most popular places, located mainly in the city centre, attract mostly the tourists who visit the city for the first time. But what if you have been there many times before or you have lived in Warsaw? What if you are interested in tourist attractions different than usual ones? You should visit some hidden and less busy places. A great opportunity to do that was organized in Warsaw on the 4th of October 2020, when the Local Urbact Group, in “Come in!” project, invited tourists and inhabitants to join the city game named “Meet the recesses of Industrial Part of Targówek District”.
Come in! in Short: The project is modelled on the festival “Budapest 100” which is organized to promote local intangible heritage in Budapest. Seven partner cities from different countries like Hungary, Poland, Italy, Spain, Finland, Croatia and Romania transfer are now transferring this Budapest’s good practice to present interesting but often unexplored territories or gems in their cities. In consonance with Urbact philosophy partners, represented by the officials, invite to cooperation the members of local NGOs, institutions and inhabitants. This idea turns out to be very successful because of the locals’ knowledge about surroundings and their motivation to promote the local intangible heritage.
About The City Game
When the coronavirus appeared in our reality, the plan of the project festivals was negatively verified. Targówek (Warsaw) team was still strongly motivated to present the local intangible heritage. Despite the fact that the festival has been rescheduled for next spring, the Local Urbact Group decided to present some interesting places and history this year using an old scouting method – a city game. Because of epidemic situation the game was partly organized online – it means that the information about the local attractions with their history and questions were presented on an online platform. The players needed to read the story with some tips and find the right places. They were pacing the game zone with their friends and families and looking for the answers for the given tasks. The day was really sunny and the players were attracted by awards and the chance to visit undiscovered places. Healthy competition among the players was also visible. Only six teams could win the awards – the winners were the fastest teams which give the most correct answers. For those who could not find the right answers the organizers prepared
a hints which stole the time.
The hidden heritage was presented to the players in two independent paths. According to the main local festival motif “People of the Targówek”, each of the paths was dedicated to local famous characters. First path “The Elsner’s music trail” was dedicated to Joseph Elsner - Chopin’s teacher who was less known than Chopin but was also really talented. Children with their parents and relatives could take part in this path. They had to solve twelve riddles. This part of the game had a host of children’s attractions, for example participants could find there outdoor music instruments, play on the modern playground or see outside tubing murals. The second path was intended for Balcerek – fictional character from the famous Polish sitcom in 80s. The adults and teenagers could join this path. Eleven questions were included in this part. Also in this part there were a lot of gems waiting for competitors, like a historic mansion, pigeon house, wooden houses, historic Warsaw-Petersburg railway, old bell tower etc. The two paths gathered 23 teams – in the first path took part eleven teams, in the second one - twelve. It was around seventy people who knew the local history. The arrangers wanted the game to be contactless so that the unlimited number of teams could join the game.
Thanks to the project “Come in!” community workers and the representatives of local institutions and NGO’s could team up and create together a city game which was promoting the local intangible heritage. Urbact Local Group meetings helped their members better understand mutual motivations and needs and hammer out the new quality of cooperation. The Targówek team’s case shows that collaborative work on local level can be very effective when the common aim is great and important.
Wandering out of central zones of Warsaw, participants of the city game were bound to find some hidden gems in Targówek district. As competitors said, the location-based game was great fun which they could share with their families and friends and find outside adventures. They also liked the possibility to find out the many historic and modern buildings and places which they hadn’t visited before. What’s more, the organizers got a lot of words of thanks and congratulations for their work with the game, which to them was the most beautiful award. This social mood predicts that the festival “People of Targówek”, planned for spring 2021, should be very successful, as well.
Photos: Rafał Suchocki
Submitted by Artur Katai on