Sorensens tour ANF, win Society’s Trails of History Challenge

Photo provided to the Times Observer Dawn and AnnaMarie Sorensen won this year’s version of the Warren County Historical Society’s Trails of History Challenge.

It can take some serious effort to cover the entirety of the Allegheny National Forest.

But Dawn Sorensen and her granddaughter, AnnaMarie, did just that in what turned into a winning effort in the Warren County Historical Society’s Trails of History Challenge.

The Society set up this year’s scavenger hunt-style effort to highlight the Allegheny National Forest given that 2023 marks the centennial of the founding of the ANF. Riddles led participants to sites, where they would have to answer a question about the site.

“This year’s trail challenge locations were completely within Allegheny National Forest providing a bit more of a challenge and a lot more fun,” Society Managing Director Michelle Gray said. “The Sorensens were the only team to have all twelve answers correct. Congratulations to you both.”

“When I saw the announcement that the Historical Society was having a scavenger hunt, I immediately thought it would be something my 10-year-old granddaughter, AnnaMarie, would want to do with me,” Dawn said. “She was looking for fun things to do this past summer that would keep her off her iPad.”

The first stop was the CCC statue at the Warren County Visitors Bureau and the next two were down Dunn’s Eddy.

Other sites included the Tidioute Overlook, Hearts Content and the Bull Run CCC Camp outside Sheffield that was a POW camp during World War II.

“AnnaMarie had never been to any of these places, and I had only been to one of them,” Dawn said. “The clues were sometimes challenging to try and figure out, but once we did, the rest just fell into place.”

“We saw and learned about sites that we would have normally driven by and not paid any attention to,” she added. “The history we learned was exciting and we really enjoyed the whole experience. In fact, so much, that we can’t wait for next year’s challenge. More people should participate.”

“When my grandma saw that there was a scavenger hunt, she joined and now we’re here,” AnnaMarie said. “When we went on the scavenger hunt, I got to walk a dog and explore. I am a swimmer and love my family and I got to visit the CCC camp in bare feet it was fun, and I hope to do it next year.”

The Sorensons won a $100 cash prize and a basket filled with county memorabilia.

“The Warren County Historical Society would like to thank the Allegheny National Forest Centennial committee, Whirley-Drink Works, the Warren County Visitors Bureau, and historical society board member Paula Bogart for their assistance in making the Warren County Trail of History Challenge III a great success,” Gray said.


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