Nienhuis kids (copy)

Last year’s winners Nya and Nash Nienhuis with Sheldon’s wrench. This year’s scavenger hunt for the wrench begins Feb. 23.

Smith Coffee’s 12th annual city-wide treasure hunt will begin on Feb. 23, the cafe said in a news release.

The cafe is located in the historic Smith-Douglas-More House, which is the inspiration for the annual hunt for Sheldon Smith’s wrench. A poem in the release explains the tradition:

“1877, that was the year / when Sheldon Smith settled down here / Equipped with the tools he held in his hands / he constructed his home in which Smith Coffee now stands / His craft was true and tools were trusty / his wrenched was prized albeit rusty / He reached for it once to tighten a bolt down / he realized he lost it while traveling through town / He and his family searched high and low/ Mary and Amie wondered, ‘where did it go?’ / 2020 is here and the quest will begin / Make a leap for the wrench we hope you all win!”

Clues to the location of the wrench will be posted daily in Smith Coffee shop, 8107 Eden Prairie Road, at 4 p.m., and previous days’ clues will be posted online at The winner, or winners, will receive one $200 Smith Coffee gift card. All community members are invited to participate; in the news release, organizers asked that all participants respect private property and abide by the city of Eden Prairie’s geocaching guidelines in their search.

Last year, the four-person Nienhuis family team won for the second time, having found the wrench in 2017 as well.

“We searched every day of the hunt, covering three different parks, for at least an hour each day,” Marcel Nienhuis told Eden Prairie News in an email after their 2019 win.

Eden Teller is the multimedia reporter for Eden Prairie News. She's passionate about fostering productive conversations and empowering communities. When she's not reporting, she can be found reading a book, on a hike or tackling home improvement projects.


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