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1st Annual Winter Cache Bash
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King Boreas
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Joined: 16 Dec 2002

Posts: 2445

PostPosted: Sun Jan 05, 2003 4:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The first clue is in 14 days.
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King Boreas
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Joined: 16 Dec 2002

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 05, 2003 5:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

jonsom has checked in. If you want a personal avatar (pic), it has to be 17k or less. Click on preferences to find the upload space.
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King Boreas
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 06, 2003 4:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The documentary crew will be back this year.

The first clue is in 13 days.
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King Boreas
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2003 8:47 pm    Post subject: A look back at 2002 Reply with quote

by Allison Wonderland

The Medallion Hunt of 2002 is now but a memory as we stand here on the doorstep of the 2003 hunt. For a few it may be a pleasant memory, but for most, even today, almost a year later, there's still a bitterness lingering on the edge of what should otherwise have been a pleasant recollection. Of course every hunt ends with a certain disappointment for everyone but the lucky finder, but in 2002 it seemed something else was lost as well.

The hunt started out as most do, with the annual gathering at Patrick McGovern's in what has been dubbed the "Pre-Dig Gig". I remember just a couple of years ago we were feeling pretty proud to have had 40 people pass through at one time or another. This time around we had a whole room of the upper bar packed with probably at least 100 people. Certainly enthusiasm was running high.

And why shouldn't it have been? The prize was still running at $10,000. There was snow on the ground. Old faces had returned and new ones were joining them as the ranks of the Cooler Crew continued to swell. Everything was looking good.

At midnight the first clue came out. As usual it didn't tell us a whole lot, although it's rather clunky writing ("Let the medallion search in you light a spark") did hint that we were dealing with a new writer from the previous years. Well, all we could hope for was that what they lacked in poetry skills they would make up for in puzzle-writing skills.

Of course not much can be done with just one clue so we waited for the next day. The second clue alluded to a park with hills. Of course it was only natural at this point in the hunt that a whole host of other meanings would be attributed to it's mere four lines. But when it's still that early in the hunt and there isn't a lot to think about just yet, turning brainstorms into hurricanes is fairly expected.

By Clue 3 however, things were starting to happen. The weather was turning warmer and the modest snowcover we had was starting to disappear. I'm not one who often went downtown for the clues, but for some reason I did this night and I was actually pretty surprised at the size of the crowd that was there for just the third clue. It was then that I first got the feeling that this hunt was going to be operating on an accelerated schedule.

When the clue came out it referred to a hill again, and sliding down the hill away from the woods. It wasn't a lot to go on, but it was starting to narrow things down for people and some people were starting to go out and check for the hilly parks.

When Clue 4 came out, it referred to something "in and on the air" as well as making reference to what sounded like some sort of sport, maybe baseball. Most people picked up pretty quickly that it meant a radio tower was in view, but which one?

I myself had gone downtown once again, only to find an even bigger crowd from the night before. I got the clue, thought about it a bit and then decided to go home and ponder it. But when I got in my car, instead of going home I pulled out my Treasure Hunter's Guide. I saw a park in there called Merriam Park that I had never been to, or even heard of before, but it looked hilly and had a radio tower in view according to the guide. I decided to go check it out.

I got there and parked on the street. Indeed there was a large hill there in the middle of the park. I climbed the hill and when I got to the top, I saw a large radio tower prominently in view. I also saw where the trees on the top of the hill parted to make way for a sledding hill that ended on the baseball fields down below. It was in that moment I felt I had found the right park. Of course I had thought that before and been wrong, but if I was right, it was definitely not going to be a long hunt unless the cluewriter had done something really clever.

The next day was Wednesday and it was only the fourth day of what could possibly be a 12 day hunt. Normally people are still scouting out parks at this point if even going out at all, but not this year. People were out digging already, each with a theory as to which park the coin was in. The melting snow made hunting pretty easy. A single person could practically search a small park alone in half a day.

That night, I found myself at the Pioneer Press yet again and the crowd there was what you might expect much closer to the end of a hunt than the beginning. Clue 5 when it came out, gave us a surprising amount of information. It basically told us we were looking for a park and rec center, a place with a parking lot, and a place with a playground. Many ran out to their favorite possibility that night to do some midnight digging already.

By now, I myself was convinced it was at Merriam and I wasn't even seriously considering anything else. Others were equally convinced it was at some other park. And of course others were still going from park to park to check out all the possibilities. But wherever people were, they were out in numbers. The next night at the Pioneer Press the line was already around the block and the traffic on Cedar was jammed as people waited for the clue to come out. Things had already grown to a fever pitch on Clue 6 and it seemed something would give soon, especially as the snow was continuing to melt.

Clue 6 did give us some hope though as it bragged about how the cluewriter(s?) had "devised ways to make it tough". It also made reference to diamonds. I had decided to take that day off of work as I really wanted to get out and hunt in the daylight. I passed people in Newell on the way. I talked on the phone to people in St. Anthony. And when I got to Merriam there were plenty of people there as well.

I had been there about an hour or so poking around when I decided to take a walk around the park to see if there was anything I had been missing. I came around the rec center to the parking lot and started talking to a woman who was checking out Merriam, but was pretty sure it wasn't there. She said she had a pretty good idea about another park. We debated a bit and then I kept going towards the hockey rink. It was at that point someone asked if I knew the number to call to find out if the medallion had been found yet. They had heard a rumor that it had. I had a cell phone, and someone else nearby had the number. I called and indeed the recording said it had been found in Merriam Park about an hour before. I looked around and there was a group of people standing in the middle of the baseball fields. I decided to head over and see if they had heard.

When I got there, it turned out they had indeed heard and they were discussing what happened. I had only been there a few minutes when the people who found the medallion returned to the park, medallion still in hand, for a mini-press conference. They showed us where they found it and told us the story.

It was a mother and son, both longtime hunters, who had come to the park to check it out as a possibility. They hadn't even planned on digging. But as they were looking around the kid stumbled on something in the snow. He kicked it to see what it was and the medallion popped up in the air. It had been sitting right there on one of the baseball diamonds near 2nd base. It was attached to the foil cover one finds on a canister of chips to keep the freshness seal intact. There was probably less than an inch of snow covering it, and had it not been found on Friday, with the weather the way it was, by Sunday one could have simply walked up to it and said, "Oh, there it is." Anyway, I got to hear the story and even see the actual medallion which was pretty exciting, but after the excitement waned, different feelings set in.

It was Friday afternoon. The weekend hadn't even started yet. As I lingered in the park talking with people, more people would show up. Some came to hunt, only to be greeted with the news it was already over. Others came already knowing it was over, just to see "the spot". The spot they never got to. The spot that they never even got to contemplate as a possibility because for so many the hunt was over before it had really even gotten a chance to start.

"Conserve your energy for the end," was a maxim that failed many who had no idea the end was so near so soon. People who had cleared their schedules for the weekend or even taken time off work suddenly found themselves with nothing to do. People who look forward to this all year had shovels and hoes that were never even exposed to the winter air.

There's always disappointment when a hunt ends and you're not the one who finds it, but generally, even if you don't win the game, you still get the chance to play. That wasn't the case for many this time. And it wasn't just a matter of someone getting lucky. There were some legitimate questions to be asked such as why was it put in the middle of a field when there was so little snow? The snow was already melting when the hunt started, with warm temperatures forecasted. Why didn't they move it? They claimed they had "devised ways to make it tough" and yet it was just sitting in the open where anyone could (and did) trip over it. Was it any wonder that people not only felt cheated out of the experience of the hunt, but practically lied to as well?

But in the end, what was there to do? The hunt was over and there wouldn't be another for a year. So we did what we always do. We had a Pity Party and our Rehash Bash, shared our stories and our pain, then wished each other well and parted ways until 2003. Because no matter who finds it in any given year, the hope of "there's always next year" keeps us going.

The first clue is in 11 days.
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King Boreas
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Joined: 16 Dec 2002

Posts: 2445

PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2003 8:57 am    Post subject: Peoplesforum.com link Reply with quote

Chad and Jon,

Did you have any problem with the link I posted? Did it take you right to the Check-In thread?
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towlebooth
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 26 Nov 2002

Posts: 1270

PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2003 10:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had no problem. I used the link to the Cooler web page and then found the discussion area from there. I must not have used the link you are referring to, but it was still easy. I have a commitment on the 18th, but I may decide to do the McGovern's thing instead. We'll see.

This will be fun!
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towlebooth
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 26 Nov 2002

Posts: 1270

PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2003 12:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jill and I now have our buttons too. Must register!! Now that we've invested $6 whole dollars we're in for the whole shabang!
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King Boreas
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Joined: 16 Dec 2002

Posts: 2445

PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2003 3:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pre-Dig Gig: Saturday prior to 1st clue, @ McGovern's

A gathering of serious, casual, veteran, newbie, smokers, non-smokers, male, female, drinkers, non-drinkers, etc etc medallion hunters.

Pity Party: Sundown, on the day the Medallion was found, @ park

A gathering of serious, casual, veteran, newbie, smokers, non-smokers, male, female, drinkers, non-drinkers, etc etc pissed off medallion hunters

Re-Hash Bash: Sunday after the Medallion was found, @ park, noonish

A gathering of serious, casual, veteran, newbie, smokers, non-smokers, male, female, drinkers, non-drinkers, etc etc partying medallion hunters.

The first clue is in 10 days.
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King Boreas
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Joined: 16 Dec 2002

Posts: 2445

PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2003 6:18 pm    Post subject: What park is it going to be in? Reply with quote

There is a $5.00 pool for whomever chooses the correct park. A couple comments you might find interesting:

Artemis the Huntress: But I'll take Crosby, it will be a great place for a re-hash bash Smile

Allison Wonderland: The problem with Crosby is there's nothing to write clues about there! I know, I tried. Although if they were to hide it in the trails behind the park, it could take a while to be found. It's very scenic back there, like something out of a fairy tale, but there's also some unsavory activities going on back there. Maybe not so much in the winter though.
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towlebooth
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 26 Nov 2002

Posts: 1270

PostPosted: Fri Jan 10, 2003 7:50 am    Post subject: Re: What park is it going to be in? Reply with quote

kingboreas wrote:

Allison Wonderland: The problem with Crosby is there's nothing to write clues about there! I know, I tried. Although if they were to hide it in the trails behind the park, it could take a while to be found. It's very scenic back there, like something out of a fairy tale, but there's also some unsavory activities going on back there. Maybe not so much in the winter though.


Like our Halloween bash!
Very Happy
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King Boreas
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Joined: 16 Dec 2002

Posts: 2445

PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2003 8:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Patrick McGovern's

Centris, towlebooth, jonsom, Clue Master, and JCBoys have all checked in: Cooler Crew Check-In

The first clue is in 8 days.
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King Boreas
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 12, 2003 6:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The first clue is in 7 days.
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Jillibean
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Joined: 26 Nov 2002

Posts: 36

PostPosted: Mon Jan 13, 2003 5:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kingboreas, have you ever searched for the medallion when there was no snow? Does it make the strategy any different?

I don't think I can remember the Winter Carnival being completely bare, but even though we got a dusting today, I'm beginning to wonder if we're ever going to get some good snow cover this winter.

I registered my button today Laughing
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King Boreas
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Joined: 16 Dec 2002

Posts: 2445

PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2003 8:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Last year there wasn't much snow, and if the hunt lasted a couple more clues, it would have been gone. The speculation is that the medallion will be/was hidden, not counting on snow cover. If we should get anything measurable, it will make it an even tougher hunt.

There is a Wild hockey game on Saturday, so parking will be tough. OBEY all signs. Last year I parked about 6 blocks away, but we're all used to walking anyway, right?

When you arrive, ask where the Cooler Crew is sitting. This will be our 5th year, somebody should know us. If not, try the upstairs bar.

The first clue is in 5 days.
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King Boreas
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Joined: 16 Dec 2002

Posts: 2445

PostPosted: Wed Jan 15, 2003 4:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The first clue is in 4 days.
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