FARGO – Losing a little shuteye and having a flashlight handy paid off, as a Fargo mom, her daughter and daughter’s boyfriend teamed up early Friday, July 14, to find the second coin in this year’s Northern Plains Coin Hunt.
The trio roused themselves at 4 a.m. to read the day’s first clue in The Forum: “A gentleman’s club and a hotel? After the name, our similarities end there.”
Becky Walters, 58, said they thought of The Northern Gentleman’s Club and dismissed it as where the coin would be. Then they did an internet search and found the Great Northern Hotel on Broadway.
Becky Walters joined by her daughter, Courtney Walters, 27, and Andrew Rose, 26, both of Corvallis, Ore., went to the hotel and searched the entry. Then, they saw the Great Northern Depot and figured that’s where the coin would be.
They searched the grounds, lifted up flower pots, and eventually peered under a railroad car parked in front of the depot.
“Actually, we had looked there quite well, and I said, ‘I’m going to go back to the car and get a flashlight.’ It was pretty dark at 4:15, 4:30 in the morning. And I got a flashlight and gave it to my daughter,” Becky said.
A couple minutes later, Courtney had the magnetized coin in her hand.
“I had to shine underneath (the railroad car), and I was looking back underneath the rim, and I found it there,” Courtney said. “You had to be a little spry to crawl under there.”
It was 4:45 a.m.
“I said, ‘This is it? I think this is it!’” Courtney said. “It’s kind of cool that out of everyone, we found it.”
Andrew then watched as mom and daughter hugged and did a happy dance all the way to their car.
The spur-of-the-moment trip downtown helped pay for Courtney and Andrew’s trip to Fargo, Becky said.
“We were visiting. It was something fun to do. Nothing to lose, except some sleep I suppose,” Courtney said.
The coin hunt is part of the annual Downtown Fargo Street Fair.
Andrew said a share of $500 was a powerful incentive to get up before dawn. “I was tired. But I knew if I wanted to share the cash, that I had to go with,” he said.
Becky said her share of the $500 would go to “something fun. Definitely not going to put it into savings. … 45 minutes of work: $500. It was worth it!”