West Side Wanderer

Difficulty: ????
Part of the SummerGame2015 Game

Ann Arbor’s “Old West Side” is reminiscent of 19th Century midwestern America with its unique architecture and streetscape. To earn this Badge, you’ll meander about two miles through the neighborhood. It’s all on paved paths/sidewalks and great for bikes, strollers, wheelchairs, etc. All the codes can be found on the outside of businesses, so they are accessible any time of day.

1. Start your quest at Allmendinger Park at the main entrance on Pauline. If you’ve come by car, there are several parking spots in the circular drive. Right behind this circular drive is the bathroom building and you’ll see many mosaic-covered posts around the building. Look closely. The posts contain photographs, memorabilia, and other bits and pieces donated by Old West Side families. Look carefully at the typed notes attached to the posts. You’ll find one written by someone whose dog lived on the West Side for 15 years. The name of this dog is your first code.

2. Now it’s time to leave Allmendinger Park and venture into the neighborhood. Cross Pauline at the marked crosswalk and proceed north down Fifth Street to W. Davis. Turn right on W. Davis, then take your first left into Edgewood Circle. You’ll see Wurster Park straight ahead. Enter the park on the paved path. To your left, you can spot a giant oak tree. This is the largest Chinkapin oak tree in Michigan and is listed on the National Registry of Historic trees! On your right along the paved path, you will see two wooden benches. The second bench is in memory of a woman who died tragically in her Old West Side home. The year of her death is your next code.

3. Continue straight down the path. It ends at 3rd Street. Take a left on 3rd Street. Pause to observe the cute critters in the masonry at the second house on your left! Continue on Third Street to W. Madison. Take a right on W. Madison and proceed east to the corner of W. Madison and S. Ashley. Here you’ll find what is arguably one of the West Side’s favorite gathering spots. It recently celebrated its 80th birthday! Look for a painting of a cow surrounded by ice cream and donuts. The year this place opened hangs on a tag around the cow’s neck and this year is your next code.

4. Retrace your steps back up Madison, heading west. At 2nd Street, cross Madison and head north. On the left side of the street at 524 2nd, notice the unique gray stucco building that was a grocery store in the early 1900s. Continue to West Jefferson and turn left. You’ll soon find Bach Elementary School on your right. Across the street from Bach, you’ll spot another favorite West Side hangout. If you haven’t had your fill of ice cream and donuts, consider stopping in for a slice of cake! To find your code, look up to the three-dimensional sign hanging over the doorway. There, you’ll see the Winged-Mercury logo framed by a three-word slogan. That slogan is your code.

5. Continue one block further on Jefferson to 5th street. Take a ight on 5th to walk past the Bach School playground. At the far end of the playground, take the cross walk across 5th Street and follow the blacktop path into what’s known as Bach’s “Big Playground.” Across the soccer field space, you’ll see a brand new mural of green trees on a whit wall. This mural was created by an artist well-known in Ann Arbor for his chalk drawings of Sluggo and friends. His first and last names are your next code. Tip: The artist’s name is NOT on the mural. Need help? See the hint….try a quick Google search once you get back home…

6. Take the path back to 5th Street and turn right. You’re now headed back toward Allmendinger Park. But not too fast, since there’s one more code to collect. On your right, just off the sidewalk, you’ll spot a Little Free Library. Feel free to browse for a book, and as you do, take a look at the owl at the base of the library. The title of the book the owl is holding (not including the two initials) is your final code.

If you’ve left your car at Allmendinger Park, just continue straight up 5th Street to its end at Pauline. Hope you’ve enjoyed this trip through the Old West Side!

This badge design was contributed by Summer Game players Elliottman, Miloman, Ken V, and Juliettie!

450 SummerGame2015 point bonus when earned

This badge has been awarded to 388 players

Game CodeDescriptionEarned On
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