Carver County Bounty — CLUE EXPLAINED
  • "twitch" is meant to suggest Paul Twitchell—who in 1965 founded a contemporary movement of new-age, Dharma-influenced mysticism known as "Eckankar;" seven years after his death in 1971, Eckankar published Twitchell’s sci-fi parable East of Danger—a Randian introduction to the concepts behind his religion (by all accounts an absolute literary trainwreck). Since the ‘80s, the Eckankar headquarters have been located in the Twin Cities metro, and since 1991 at the "Temple of Golden Wisdom" in Chanhassen, Minnesota—just down the road from this hunt’s search area at Kerber Pond Park.
  • "don’t blow a gasket" is meant to suggest searching the more easterly, suburban areas of Carver County—as opposed to heading westward, into the countryside.
  • "make a basket (be sure to weave, not shoot)" is meant to suggest this hunt’s search area at Kerber Pond Park (on Kerber Boulevard) in Chanhassen—"Kerber" is a surname of German origin meaning "basket weaver"—while "the so-called pond" is meant to reinforce searching around Kerber Pond.
  • "east of danger" is meant to suggest Paul Twitchell’s posthumous science fiction novel of the same name, while nudging hunters east of the Eckankar temple in Chanhassen, and toward a solution for the image component of the clue.
  • "Follow a path to the stars!" is meant to suggest using the image component of the clue as a map to—and of—the search area at Kerber Pond Park. It could also be taken to suggest the spirituality of the Eckankar movement or the science fiction bent of Twitchell’s East of Danger.
  • "ziggurat shrine" is meant to suggest Eckankar’s "Temple of Golden Wisdom," located just down the road from the tokens’ hiding spot at Kerber Pond Park; the ziggurat-style roof of the temple is painted gold.
  • "a water line with toga party vibes" is meant to suggest Kerber Pond—located between streets named Conestoga Trail, Conestoga Court, and Saratoga Drive.
  • "Mount your horse and ride the course" is meant to suggest Saddlebrook Curve, which connects the Eckankar Temple to Kerber Pond Park (and is represented as the "path to the stars" in the image component of the clue).
  • "a pathway ringed in ribes" is meant to suggest the many gooseberries along the pathway circling Kerber Pond—"Ribes" (technically capitalized, and pronounced "ry-beez") is the scientific genus name for "currant" or "gooseberry."
  • "a grassy stroll ‘round the watering hole" is meant to suggest the mowed grass pathway surrounding Kerber Pond on three sides (on which three of this hunt’s five tokens were hidden).
  • "Where … sunken-eyed things with crimson wings and dragons dot the sky" is meant to suggest the many red-winged blackbirds and dragonflies darting through Kerber Pond airspace at the time of the hunt.
  • "Medallions of wonder secreted under alabaster pebbles" is meant to suggest each token was hidden beneath a small, white stone.
  • "Shraosha" is the mythical setting of Paul Twitchell’s Randian sci-fi novel East of Danger; in this case, it’s also a stand-in for the Eckankar campus—the eastern "gates" of which are found on the other end of Saddlebrook Curve from Kerber Pond Park.
  • "join the free-thinking rebels" is a reference to one of the central parables of Twitchell’s book East of Danger—and is meant to suggest the book, its author, and the tenets of the new wave religion on which it’s based.
  • "Avert disaster and follow the master" is another double reference, to both the plot of East of Danger—in which protagonist Peddar Zaskq prevents a catastrophe from reaching Shraosha—and the tenets of Eckankar, whereby disciples adhere to the teachings of "The Mahanta," or "the inner form of the living Eck Master" in order to "experience the Light and Sound of God."
  • "make your way through the maze" is meant to suggest the mysterious snow maze that appeared this past winter on the surface of Kerber Pond in Chanhassen.
  • "To fight a climactic and intergalactic battle, where passions blaze" is a reference to the tagline from the front cover of East of Danger—"PASSIONS BLAZE ACROSS INTER-GALACTIC BATTLEGROUNDS"—and is meant more generally to suggest the book’s plot.
  • The clue was posted with a picture collage that, when rotated 90 degrees clockwise, serves as a map to the tokens’ hiding spots around Kerber Pond. The collage depicts:
    • the illustrated cover of Eckankar founder Paul Twitchell’s sci-fi novel East of Danger, which in turn depicts:
      • The novel’s protagonist (and Twitchell’s alter-altar-ego), "Peddar Zaskq"
      • The novel’s primary female character, "Lydia" (wearing a crown with a red jewel)
      • A large sword with a hexagonal jewel set into its hilt
      • Flying saucers
      • A domed city atop a mountain
    • five prominent Eck Masters (clockwise from top right):
      • Paul Twitchell
      • Fubbi Quantz
      • Gopal Das
      • Sri Harold Klemp
      • Rebazar Tarzs
    • the golden, ziggurat-style roof of Eckankar’s Chanhassen temple
    • the "EK" symbol of the Eckankar religion
    • "a path to the stars," which traces the route along Saddlebrook Curve from the Eck temple (the blue star on the hilt of the sword) to the tokens (the five white stars), placed around Kerber Pond

Ben Fischer, Saint Paul
Ed Brodie, Maplewood

Matt Littlefield, Apple Valley
Brian Naslund, Chanhassen
Mike Nowak, Saint Paul

The final token can be found somewhere within the area depicted in the photo below:

[Image: final.jpg]

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