Lobo basketball fans are going to be in for a treat on Monday, Nov. 1 at 2:30 p.m. The Pit will reopen its doors to the UNM community for a sneak peak at the newly redesigned and renovated arena with a ribbon cutting ceremony. At the same time, people are invited to try out the university's newest mobile game, SCVNGR, taking part in one of a number of scavenger hunts throughout the new building.

UNM is the first organization in New Mexico to adopt the SCVNGR platform at the Pit dedication ceremony. The UNM Communication and Marketing, and Student Affairs departments will work together to develop customized scavenger hunts and challenges that are unique to the UNM campus.

SCVNGR is a geolocation-based mobile game that can be played using any mobile device using either the SCVNGR application for iPhone and Android, or via SMS text-messaging. SCVNGR players are presented with location-specific challenges that they can complete to earn points. Depending on which challenge students select at the Pit dedication ceremony, prizes will vary from UNM pennants and beanies to one of three signed UNM basketballs, depending on the number of SCVNGR treks completed.

In the past year over 1,000 events have been run at over 350 colleges and universities across the country. These events have varied from meet-and-greets at campus preview weekends to new student orientations to scavenger hunts for alums returning to campus.

The potential future uses of this application include self-guided tours of campus or the museums located on UNM's main campus, prospective student tours, Lobo Orientation, and special event tours, such as the upcoming Pit dedication or yearly events such as Red Rally and Homecoming.

But these games aren't just for fun. SCVNGR's analytics allow the university to determine how many members of the UNM community have accessed the various scavenger hunts and the extent that people have participated in them. New scavenger hunts can be developed from this information that better serve the needs of current and potential UNM students.

In 1999, Sports Illustrated listed the Pit in its "Top Twenty Sporting Venues of the 20th Century, ranking the arena 13th, ahead of prestigious sporting venues such as Daytona International Speedway, the Rose Bowl and Notre Dame Stadium.

For more information about SCVNGR, or to download the application for your smart phone, please visit Scavenger Hunt.

Media Contact: Benson Hendrix (505) 277-1816, e-mail: bhendrix@unm.edu