Will Shortz is surrounded by a host of Minnesota crossword puzzle creators, including from left, David Bael, Zhouqin Burnikel, George Barany, Shortz, Tom Pepper, Deane Morrsion, Victor Barocas, Jay Kaskel, Daniel Kantor, David Liben-Nowell, and Marcia Brott.
Will Shortz, the New York Times and National Public Radio puzzle master, thrilled about 700 people at Ted Mann Concert Hall last night with his tales about the history of crossword puzzles, his favorite puzzles, and more.
He answered a number of questions from the audience, including one that asked what is Shortz’ favorite word. The answer: It’s “ucalegon” and it means a neighbor whose house is on fire, he said.
Shortz finished up by leading a “Beat the Champ” puzzle contest that involved dozens of willing audience members.
The event was sponsored by the Friends of the University of Minnesota Libraries.
(Photos by Paula Keller)