2024 Clues & Explanations

Clue #1 (Thursday June 13)

Hear Ye, Hear Ye! Hunters of the realm: we summon thee

Find a treasuresome path using the clues you read.

Don’t act like fools – be gentle and follow published rules

While harkening along at a brisk polar bear speed. 

How loud was your howl? Did you ever cry foul

When K.I. had a one-and-one to be thrown?

Grab your wingman or maybe even a swingman

As we recount a championship of our very own.

Explanation:

To begin, “Ye” is the name of the artist formerly known as Kanye West, immediately hinting at the name of the park where the medallion was hidden. “Published rules” hinted at West Publishing, now Thompson-Reuters, known for its production of legal materials. The park land was donated by the founder of West Publishing, John B. West. According to the best sources we could find, the average top speed for a polar bear is 25MPH, which is the speed limit of Lake Avenue. .The second stanza made mention of the Western Conference final which pitted our Wolves (“howl”) against the Dallas Mavericks with the terms “one and one,” “foul,” and “swingman” indicating basketball. “K.I.” referred to Kevin Irving, a star player on the Maverick’s team. While no basketball court could be found in the park, the Manitou Days theme this year marked the 40th anniversary of the White Bear Lake Area High School boys basketball team winning a state championship. If one were to reCOUNT the number of boulders along the northern bank of the beach, they would arrive at the medallion’s hiding spot near the 40th one. “One and one” and the fact that Kevin Irving’s number is 11 also hinted at the fact that the medallion was hidden at the end of 11th Street. 

Clue #2 (Friday June 14)

If an El Niño is warm, it’s prudent to swarm

To the sweet spot before it’s buddy.

A sisterwood a-whorl to help scouts unfurl

Tap in, observe, and make quick study!

Do you hear that whispering sound? If so, come back around

In time, all streetlight secrets shall be revealed.

If tonight you seek to be winning, don’t slow-roll at the beginning

Or, ‘ol chum, you’ll never reach our Elysian field. 

Explanation:

Our historical “sweet spot” at the end of this clue was Manitou Island, easily seen (“observe”) from the medallion’s hiding spot. The first residents of our region were known to harvest sap from the groves of maple on Manitou Island. A lack of winter or an early spring can accelerate the typical schedule for harvesting maple syrup. Waiting too long makes for what is called a “buddy” sap. To help mark the way toward this and other harvest locations, First Nations people twisted the branches of the oak trees (“sisterwood a-whorl”), some of which still stand along Lake Avenue – and a fallen example of this is found in front of the Fillebrown House. The final section of the clue pointed to the Matchbox 20 song Parade, released in 2012, whose lyrics include “street light secrets whispering for you to come back out.” West Park/Memorial Beach is at the end of the Manitou Days parade route, hinted at with “don’t slow-roll at the beginning.” This clue was released on the same day as the parade so “If tonight…” was included. 

Clue #3 (Saturday June 15)

A reigning victor can be a mystical predictor

If to a related owner a name is raptly applied.

A crown for big and red – but earlier is your stead

Right before you dance but just after you decide. 

Back when clue two-ing, did you resort to stewing?

Chin up, soldier – you’re hot on a trail to discovery!

Name and title released – first marked then leased

Before grower and sower made a full recovery. 

Explanation:

Both stanzas of this dense clue provided several references to Chateauguet, name of the condominium northwest of the site. The first stanza provided a Kentucky Derby reference as a horse named Chateaugay won the derby in 1963.  This year’s winner (2024) was Mystik (“mystical”) Dan. “Dan” is the name referred to in the second line connecting this year’s winner to Chateaugay as Chateaugay’s owner was named Dan. Chateaugay won the race exactly ten years before Secretariat (also known as “Big Red”) won his derby title and the coveted triple crown. The last line hinted at the winner before and after Chateaugay’s championship – Northern Dancer (1962) and Decidedly (1964). The second stanza referred to the original Chateaugay resort that stood at the intersection of Second Street (“two-ing”) and Stewart Avenue (“stew”ing). The resort was opened by F. W. Benson, a “farmer and sower” (of Benson Farm and Airport fame near Bald Eagle). But, the resort was sold to William F. Markoe (“mark”) and named Hotel Chateaugay. It was then passed from Markoe to John M. Trelease. Later, Benson reaquired the property. “On the trail” referred to the Sather trail which connected the original resort site to Chateauguet and our hiding spot.

Clue #4 (Sunday June 16)

A tango of ultra suspense at Janet Leigh’s expense

Landed clutch – the critical reviews were great.

In the loquacious club no more, one for won the final score

Sad days for fliers who ought to know they don’t rate. 

Ready for another confused blink? A super guy and Henry III link

To a bejeweled cowboy through the passage of why.

No use throwing your hands in the air – exclaiming “I don’t care!”

For friends, it’s already much too late for goodbye. 

Explanation:

The first stanza provided many ways to arrive at Ricki Lake, hinting at nearby Lake Avenue. The first line referred to Lake’s appearance on Dancing with the Stars where she scored big with a tango set to an overture from the movie Psycho (Janet Leigh was cast as Marion Crane in the 1960 film). “Ultra” and “clutch” – when combined – form the brand of hairspray from the musical film Hairspray, in which Lake was cast as Tracy Turnblad in 1988. “Loquacious club” and “one for won” referred to Lake’s one, Emmy winning, season as a talk show host. The last line hinted at the 1990s hit Pretty Fly For A White Guy by The Offspring where we are told that if “you don’t rate…at least you’ll know you can always go on Ricki Lake”. “Ought” and “club” also pointed toward  the upcoming Yacht Club concert at Harriet Island where The Offspring will be playing. Our Yacht Club is visible from the hiding spot. In the second stanza, the “super guy” was Superman, and the “bejeweled cowboy” was the Rhinestone Cowboy, Glen Campbell. Combined with Henry III, all of these men had fathers named John. Or, in other words, they are sons of John, a reference to nearby Johnson Avenue. “Passage of why” hinted at the passage of the paternal Y chromosome. And, lastly, Much Too Late for Goodbye was an early 80s hit song by Julian Lennon, who was the son of John Lennon. 

Clue #5 (Monday June 17)

Did you grab a blanket or chair? Did we see you there?

Below the stars, an easy and freeing vibe was born. 

The wise see high from low – where bears come and go

Along paths both established and unworn. 

You’ll find him sitting square, up yonder there

Revolted by any saucy egg of chicken.

We wouldn’t betray you – so the point we convey to you

Don’t be railroaded in your pickin’.

Explanation:

A popular Manitou Days event is the Beach Dance, which was held a few days before this clue’s release. Music was supplied by the Free & Easy Band (“easy and freely”). Words and phrases from the online description of the event (manitoudays.com & explorewhitebear.org) were pulled for the clue, including “Grab a blanket or chair” and “below the stars.” “Bears come and go” was inspired by a sign above the medallion’s site that has a picture of a polar bear hiking in one direction and biking in the other. Lastly, “paths both established and unworn” referred to the Sather Trail, which has been a popular route for years and the new blacktop path that can be found in West Park. The phrase “high from low” referred to the fact that the medallion was hidden in a low elevation but the things mentioned in this stanza were up the hill. The first half of the clue referred to George Washington (Washington Square) and his rejection of Benedict Arnold (Eggs Benedict = “saucy egg of chicken”; “betray you”). “Revolt” – a variation of revolution – was also included. Central to Arnold’s famous betrayal was information involving West Point. “Don’t be railroaded” informed hunters not to search Railroad Park but another spot nearby.  Again, like in the first stanza, “up” was a key word here as this hints that the medallion is actually down a hill at the beach. 

Clue #6 (Tuesday June 18)

To prevent complete ruin, halt what yer doin’

Take one step, double drag, dual steps then no-go. 

One more step after drag and then repeat the wag

Use this spicy recipe to trick what hides below. 

Dreaming of 40 below, did a legend’s beau

Let black masquerade for white? 

Furthermore, was it our southern shore

Where an emerald shimmered most bright?

Explanation:

The first stanza included the moves of “The Sand Dance,” a key component of the movie Dune (“doin’”). This is a necessary maneuver to ward off the monsters living below the surface on the planet Arrakis, which is being farmed for its spice (“spicy”). The medallion was hidden on the edge of the sandy beach. The second stanza spoke of the author F. Scott Fitzgerald, husband of Zelda (“legend”), who spent time on the eastern shore of White Bear Lake. There is debate as to whether Black Bear Lake in his story Winter Dreams was inspired by our White Bear Lake. A key detail – a green light – from the more famous work by Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, may be tied to a houseboat located on the lake’s southern shore. The place where Fitzgerald stayed, near the Yacht Club, is easily seen from the medallion’s location. “40” also hinted at the boulder count leading to the medallion. 

Clue #7 (Wednesday June 19)

With so much at stake – please, for his sake

Capitalize upon your greatest of strengths.

So, the advice we give: don’t just exist – but live

And release your soul to sojourn great lengths. 

While we were marching, winter to spring was arching

It sure came in like a lamb and out like its pair.

As the droves arrive for hunting, heed places for bunting

Our vote: review, sit, and align with care.

Explanation:

The first stanza referred to a memorial bench overlooking the treasure site. It is dedicated to Peter Meslow (if you inserted “Pete” for “his” you arrived at the common saying “For Pete’s Sake.” The memorial plaque includes the term liveSTRONG (“strength,” “capitalize,” and “live”). During the month of March (“marching”) it was quickly transitioning from winter to spring. But, the important word here was “arching” as the Manitou Bridge was visible from the site. “Lamb” and “vote” hinted at the nearby Chateaugaye site, which once was Lamb’s Hotel. This is the location where it was voted to incorporate White Bear Lake as a village in 1858. “Align” referenced the fact that this clue would help hunters align landmarks in the park.The two places for bunting would be the ballfield in the southwest corner of West Park, the park pavilion in West Park (adorned every summer with buntings – see the city’s webpage on the park). “Review” and “sit” instructed hunters to look back at the previous clue citing the memorial bench. Together, the ballfield, pavilion, and bench formed a line pointing to the area of Memorial Beach where the medallion was placed. 

Clue #8 (Thursday June 20)

Before the cagey crash, a classic heist and dash

Befell an iconic place in the sun.

You needn’t breakfast with brats – seek an old nest for rats

Name it and treasure’s yours to be won.

Liquid surroundings amid craggy groundings

Oh there’s so much here we (privately) love.

One last thing to volley or you’ll feel quite melancholy:

Ignore not the numeral above. 

Explanation:

The first stanza referred to The Sands Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. It is commonly tied to the The Rat Pack, who made this a home base (“nest”) in the 1950s and 1960s. In the movie Con Air (1997), starring Nicholas Cage (“cagey”), an aircraft crashes into the lobby of the hotel. Before this film, the original Oceans 11 (1960), was shot at the hotel. The hotel’s tagline, as can be seen on pictures of old signs for the property, was “a place in the sun.” Hunters were advised not to ignore the number in Ocean’s 11 as the medallion was hidden nearly in line with 11th street.

Clue #9 (Friday June 21)

Things are getting mighty gritty here in the city

Yet, stay positive and remember: do not stress.

Just give it all ya got by hook or bank shot

But, now’s the time for that full-court press.

If you have paws you must immediately pause

Before dipping your pads in the pool.

Commune with your shells closer to the wells

We’re sorry: but a rule is a rule! 

Your quest will also go kersplat if you think flat

Is the medallion that still eludes you today.

In a burrow it’s curled — yours to be unfurled 

Will you be bold enough to emerge from the fray? 

Explanation:

This clue made more overt hints at Memorial Beach. “Stay positive” referred back to when the space was called Optimist Beach and “remember” to its current name. “Hook” and “bank” are lake terms, hinting at nearby White Bear Lake. “Court” referred to both the volleyball and (private) tennis courts in the vicinity of the hiding spot. The second stanza made reference to the fact that dogs are not allowed at Memorial Beach. The dog beach can be found nearer to Matoska Park, where two old fashioned wells are located. Finally, hunters were informed that the medallion was rolled up and in a small burrow pushed into the bank.

Clue #10 (Saturday June 22)

Hopefully you’ve narrowed your reach to Memorial Beach

You’ll need to descend from roadside.

Where paths and stair converge you’ll begin your scourge

With basketball as your guide. 

Ready to throw grains asunder? Well, the strategic number

Was first hinted back in clue number one.

For a bolder count, identify the anniversary amount

From when those boys first successfully won. 

The general direction to go is the name of their foe

See how it all ties together at last?

It’ll end as planned if you find the right pocket of sand

There we made a finger-sized burrow so it wouldn’t be harassed.

Explanation:

Final instructions to the 2024 medallion. 

Clue #8

Before the cagey crash, a classic heist and dash
Befell an iconic place in the sun.
You needn’t breakfast with brats – seek an old nest for rats
Name it and treasure’s yours to be won.

Liquid surroundings amid craggy groundings
Oh there’s so much here we (privately) love.
One last thing to volley or you’ll feel quite melacholy:
Ignore not the numeral above.

Clue #7

With so much at stake – please, for his sake
Capitalize upon your greatest of strengths.
So, the advice we give: don’t just exist – but live
And release your soul to sojourn great lengths.

While we were marching, winter to spring was arching
It sure came in like a lamb and out like its pair.
As the droves arrive for hunting, heed places for bunting
Our vote: review, sit, and align with care.

Clue #6

To prevent complete ruin, halt what yer doin’
Take one step, double drag, dual steps then no-go.
One more step after drag and then repeat the wag
Use this spicy recipe to trick what hides below.

Dreaming of 40 below, did a legend’s beau
Let black masquerade for white?
Furthermore, was it our southern shore
Where an emerald shimmered most bright?

Clue #5

Did you grab a blanket or chair? Did we see you there?
Below the stars, an easy and freeing vibe was born.
The wise see high from low – where bears come and go
Along paths both established and unworn.

You’ll find him sitting square, up yonder there
Revolted by any saucy egg of chicken.
We wouldn’t betray you – so the point we convey to you
Don’t be railroaded in your pickin’.

Clue #4

A tango of ultra suspense at Janet Leigh’s expense
Landed clutch – the critical reviews were great.
In the loquacious club no more, one for won the final score
Sad days for fliers who ought to know they don’t rate.

Ready for another confused blink? A super guy and Henry III link
To a bejeweled cowboy through the passage of why.
No use throwing your hands in the air – exclaiming “I don’t care!”
For friends, it’s already much too late for goodbye.