Maggie Siegel hopes that the Great Salt Lake City Treasure Hunt will eventually have more Roman numerals after it than "Rambo," or even "Friday the 13th."
This year's sequel is the Great Salt Lake City Treasure Hunt II, a combination parlor game and road race that she promises will be even more fun - and more frustrating - than last year's Great Salt Lake City Treasure Hunt I. This year's hunt will take place June 18."We decided it was too easy last year," says Siegel, mastermind behind the fund-raiser, which will benefit the LDS Hospital's Deseret Foundation.
Too easy? For her maybe - she made up all the clues, which last year included mind-teasers such as this:
Under a street lamp in front of the Hogle Zoo, two people dressed like clowns are standing beside a poster for the Chinese Circus. On a table in front of the clowns is a bucket of pickles and a sign that reads: "Pick One."
The answer to each treasure hunt clue is a number. If you've come up with the correct number you will find it on the treasure hunt map, which also includes lots of bogus numbers to throw you off. When you find the right number on the map, you drive to the corresponding location. Then you try to solve the next clue.
So there you are standing in the dark at Hogle Zoo. You stare at the circus poster, which includes the dates Sept. 22 and 23. So maybe the answer is 22. Or 23. Or maybe you add the dates together? Too easy.
You look in the shopping bag of extra clues that the Treasure Hunt organizers have supplied you and your five partners. A packet of Kleenex. A map of the London Underground. Some matches. An oriental fan. Could this have some connection to the Chinese Circus?
You are about to give up when one of your team members, who is standing by the bucket, wonders if the answer has something to do with the fact that the pickles are dills. "Pick one." Pick a dill. Pick a dilly. Circus. Picadilly Circus!
But that's not a number, it's a neighborhood in London. Aha! You rifle through the shopping bag again and come up with the London subway map. The Picadilly Circus stop is coded J7. You look on the treasure hunt map and - yes! - J7 is there, somewhere around 6th South and West Temple. That will be your next stop.
The team that solves all the clues first is the winner. There are no prizes for the winners, nor any treasure at the end of the hunt. There is just the satisfaction of knowing that you are more clever than 59 other teams of clever Salt Lakers.
After the hunt, all these clever people will meet at a yet-to-be-announced location for a picnic and dancing, with KALL-radio providing the master of ceremonies. Cost for the evening is $30 per person, with a maximum of 6 persons per car. Registration is limited to the first 360 people. The hunt begins at 7:30 p.m. in the LDS Hospital parking lot.
About a week before the hunt, participants will receive a list of "hints." Siegel stresses that participants should read these hints so many times that they can nearly recite them from memory. This is important, she says, because every second counts once the hunt begins.
Teams who discover that, no matter how hard they think, they still can't solve a particular clue can tear open the appropriate "emergency envelope," which will contain the correct answer. At the end of the hunt, however, teams will be docked 20 minutes for each emergency envelope opened.
Last year, participants found themselves driving all over Salt Lake trying to solve clues. One clue flashed in Morse code on the electronic sign at the Radisson Hotel. Another clue was taped to a roof of the Shilo Inn and could only be seen from the glass elevator.
Participants this year need to bring flashlights, a blanket for the party afterwards and forks. Siegel will not say what the forks are for, except that they relate to one of the clues. Will the answer lie in the salad bar at the Sizzler?