The latest summer craze has hit Connecticut and it’s causing several kids to visit the state's landmarks.
More than 7 million people this weekend have downloaded Pokemon Go that acts as a virtual treasure hunt and New Britain is capitalizing on the new game.
Eyewitness News hunted for Pokemon and tried to catch all with New Britain Mayor Erin Stewart at Walnut Hill Park.
Walnut Hill Park has become a hot spot for hunting Pokemon. While the virtual game does have kids attached to their phones, it forces them to get outside, walk around their neighborhoods and explore their community.
The game is simple in concept.
“We’re walking around and there’s pokestops everywhere,” Tomaz Adancyzak, of New Britain, said. “And you can get pokeballs and generate stuff, to catch more Pokemons."
Pokemon Go has made this summer an active one in gaming. It takes players places they’ve never been in years.
“I’ve lived here periodically for the past 10 years,” New Britain resident Sam Laureano said. “I came to the park for the first time ever this morning.”
Folks were out for a Pokemon hunt on Monday. In New Britain, they got a little assistance from the mayor. Stewart offered a helpful map that shows players where the hot spots.
“We thought, if you’re exploring New Britain in a way you haven’t before, how could we get you to explore other areas that you wouldn’t see and maybe you’re finding a lot more than Pokemon,” Stewart said.
Stewart said she then took Eyewitness News out for a hunt right outside of New Britain city hall.
“You want to point it at him. We got him,” Stewart said. “Beautiful, we have a new Pokemon.”
Since the game launched in the United States last week, city landmarks have been seeing a lot of local traffic.
“You’ll learn about the architecture of the building and that city hall was actually a hotel at one time before it was converted into City Hall,” Stewart said.
Local businesses were also seeing a spike in traffic. Newly opened Grand Pizza happened to double as a Pokemon Gym.
“I just saw everyone come in here, on their phones, trying to catch some Pokemons, “Marisela Maldonaldo, of Grand Pizza, said.
It’s the reason Laureano sat down for a slice.
“It’s basically, swipe, swipe, punch, punch, punch, swipe,” Laureano said.
“They may be looking for Pokemon,” Stewart said. “But, they’re still seeing treasures New Britain has that they may not know of.”
Pokemon Go gives players the opportunity to meet new people all in the outdoors.
The game is constantly evolving and local landmarks seem to remain the biggest draws
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