If nothing else, this year’s hunt for the Golden Egg shows that Judy Cagle has a spirit of adventure.
Victoria Lopez, 20, of Rockingham, won the $500 prize when she found the egg Friday afternoon on Cagel Grave Road, located off Grassy Island Road on the outskirts of Ellerbe. While the Golden Football was found last fall after seven of 12 possible clues had been published, it took nine clues to lead Lopez to the Golden Egg. Lucky for her, it took everyone else more than that.
Lopez guided her boyfriend, Jaime Ortiz, 20, also of Rockingham, to the boat launch along Grassy Island Road. From there, the two drove his four-wheel-drive Jeep about 0.7 miles to Cagel Grave Road. Then came the graveyard.
“At first, I thought I was just looking at a driveway,” Lopez said. “I thought, ‘maybe I’m missing something.’ Then I found a snake. It kind of scared me off. I ran back to my car.”
Not one to quit, though, a second venture from the Jeep took her to a small cluster of gravestones.
“I was kind of scared,” she said. “There was only one tombstone that had a little bush in front of it. I thought, ‘it looks like something’s up with it.’ I saw a little piece of the bag. For a second, I thought it was a piece of trash. As I got closer, I started seeing the color” — the golden color of the $500 egg, that is.
The adventure wasn’t open upon the discovery of the egg, though. All of the sudden, Lopez said, “a whole bunch of bees flew from the flower bush. Luckily, I don’t think I’m allergic to them. I grabbed the bag and I just ran to my car. It was quite an adventure.”
Cagle, business development manager for The Richmond County Daily Journal, was thrilled Lopez found the Golden Egg.
“What a wonderful person to have found it,” Cagle said. “Thanks to our contest sponsors, we have the opportunity to have a lot of fun with events like this.”
Sponsors for this year’s Golden Egg contest included: Big K LP Gas Company, First Choice Medical Chiropractic, Cascades Tissue Group, Peking Wok Chinese Buffet, Medical Center Pharmacy, Bobby’s Furniture, Murphy Chiropractice and Wellness, Carolina Jewelry and Pawn and Charlie’s Corner, comprised of Roberdel Laundromat and 4T’s Diner.
Lopez said she plans to save the money she won by finding the Golden Egg.