Oysterville’s Pied Piper

Jan 27, 2014 | 4 comments

Clue to Our Door


For many years I’ve heard my young Red House Cousins sing the praises of the Pied Piper of Oysterville.  I’ve watched from afar as he has set up whiffle ball games on the school grounds across from his house.  I’ve even written about his special way with kids – his kids, his grandkids, the neighbors’ kids and the neighbors’ grandkids.

I’m talking about Tucker Wachsmuth, of course.  Better known to his own grandchildren as Opa.  Until yesterday, I’d never been party to one of his best known Oysterville Kid Activities – a scavenger hunt!  But yesterday was the day!

Amelia at the Door

Amelia Rings the Doorbell

He came over to the house about mid-morning and asked if I would be around for a while.  Hearing an affirmative, he gave me a little piece of paper that I was to give to Miss Amelia when she came to my door.  The clue that was to bring her here had a drawing of our Tsako-Te-Hahsh-Eetl sign on it and said, “RING THE DOORBELL AND TALK TO SYDNEY.”

Amelia is five-and-a-half and,  though she is already reading some, she wisely brought along her support team – her year old brother Samuel Hawkeye Wachsmuth, her Mom, and both Oma and Opa.  She rang the bell and I answered.  “Why hello, Amelia!  What’s going on?”

The Treasure Hunter

Amelia and Her Support Team

“I’m on a treasure hunt,” she said and she looked at me expectantly.

“Which hand do you want?” I asked, and she unerringly went for the left one (which was the right one.)

The clue was a drawing (by Opa) of the church and said “IN THE GUEST BOOK.”  And off she and her entourage went!

There were fourteen clues all together, taking Miss Amelia to familiar places near Opa and Oma’s house – the schoolhouse, a picnic table, Opa’s bicycle…

The Clue from Sydney


For the treasure at the end, Opa had carefully peeled a tangerine, removed the fruit and filled the rind with m and m’s, holding it together with a rubber band.  Miss Amelia does not particularly like tangerines but when she discovered the contents of this particular orange globe, she was all smiles.  Another success story for Oysterville’s Pied Piper.

And I helped!


  1. Linda J

    What a fun idea! I loved it. (I like Tucker’s sketches, too.)

  2. Jo

    Tucker is making memories for all the children with whom he connects. I’m sure this will be a treasured memory for Amelia when she is an adult. Maybe she will keep it going with her own children. A nice thought to contemplate.

  3. April

    Tucker never does a treasure hunt for me! 😉 Oh wait, I am too old. I think the cut off is 43 and I turned 44 this year…so sad.

  4. Stephanie Frieze

    This delightful activity could only happen in a village such as Oysterville!


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