WAXAHACHIE — Whether you’re playing for fun, prizes, or interactive exercise, one Maypearl college student is hosting a Waxahachie Downtown Scavenger Hunt fundraiser with international purpose.

“It’s just going to be a lot of fun,” expressed Chelsea Rodrigue, world racer and hunt organizer. “The scavenger hunt will be within walking distance, and it’s a good way to get people into the stores, walk around the community, have family time — and it’s a great way to support this mission trip.”

Representing Ellis County, Rodrigue is raising funds to travel throughout the cotenant of Asia to help other communities and villages by teaching English, building houses, and fulfilling desperate needs as they arise.

“Basically, the Lord just called me to the World Race,” Rodrigue explained after moving back home for the summer from Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches.

“I had been studying theater for the last two years and moved back because the semester had ended and shortly after the summer started, God was like, ‘Hey, I want you to go on this mission trip,’ and I was like, ‘Okay, God, this is huge.’ Because I’ve never been on a mission’s trip much less an 11-month long missions trip,” she laughed.

A previous Daily Light article explained that the non-profit, Adventures in Missions, created the World Race expedition that encompasses a journey of 11 countries in 11 months to serve “the least of these,” while amongst real and raw communities.

“So I was like, ‘God, are you sure this is what you want me to do?’ and he reminded me of a verse in Amos, where he [Amos] was in a city and spreading the word of God and one of the town leaders was like, ‘Hey Amos, get out of here.’ And, of course, I’m paraphrasing,” Rodrigue chuckled.

“And Amos was like, ‘Listen, guy, I didn’t ask for this. I was a farmer, and God took me off the farm and told me to go preach to my people.’ So when I read that, I was like, ‘Okay, time to go,’” she recalled.

Sponsoring her with food and dessert, The Vault Smokehouse has joined Rodrigue in her endeavors to take a little piece of Texas heart and courage over 9,000 miles away, helping desperate communities from Indonesia to Mozambique.

“She came in and let us know what she was doing, and we loved it,” explained Money Salmon, Co-owner of The Vault Smokehouse. “One of our hearts here at The Vault is to send disciples to all the nations, so she’s definitely apart of that vision. And we told Chelsea we’d love to sponsor her and help where we could.”

“Our job is to be here to support and send, so if we don’t do that, it stops short here. We think it’s important to help our local people do works here and send them out,” she added.

With a goal of $17,400 expense for the entire trip, Rodrigue has recently surpassed her September goal and is working towards October’s.

“I’ve raised a little over $5,000, and I was just sitting there going through it, and everything felt so surreal at that moment,” Rodrigue described. “I was like, ‘God, what? This is crazy!’ And he was like, ‘See, I told you I provide.’”

Crediting her mother for cleverly rhyming the clues together, Rodrigue goes on to note that many Downtown merchants are participating in the game as well, hiding the clues throughout their stores.

“It’s definitely kid-friendly, and we’ll have prizes for the winners at the end,” Rodrigue noted.

“It’s completely important for the community to get involved with things like this,” Salmon added. “One of the things we believe is that it takes businesses, local mom and pops and big businesses, if they’re willing, to send these people out. And I think we're starting to see some of that.”

“We want to support anyone that we can that is doing what Chelsea is doing, helping other people, and we want to be apart of sowing into that,” she included.

Inviting the community to attend a mystery wrapped within a game of excitement, Rodrigue encourages those interested to stop by and join in.

“So come out and have fun, that’s what this whole thing is about,” Rodrigue heartened. “To just come and enjoy the company of the community and support this awesome mission trip and see what God is doing.”

The Downtown Scavenger Hunt is scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 23 at SIG and H&H Insurance Services on 423 South College Street. Registration is $10 for adults and $2 for children under 11-years-old and will be open at 12 p.m. The hunt will promptly start after that at 1 p.m. For more information, email Chelsea Rodrigue at chelseanicolerodrigue@gmail.com.


Chelsea Groomer, @ChelseaGroomer