SECRET SANTA HAS BEEN FOUND!!

After an intense search that narrowed and narrowed with each clue, after a weeks-long hunt, Robin found Secret Santa at Mt. Rushmore!

Yes, Mt. Rushmore!

She followed the clues, clue analysis and team intel to help support her hunch, and then she made the call in to Danny & Monica on Thursday morning, December 8th, and laid her cards on the table.

"Are you the 99.1 WFMK Terry's Jewelry & GIfts $1,000 Secret Santa?"

Look back through the clues to see the key words and phrases and the "takeaway" that helped point to Santa being at Mt. Rushmore.  They are noted in bold.

Clue #1
The festive season has come,
So it's time for some Holiday fun
I could be sitting still or on the run
Secret Santa time has begun

**Clue Analysis: "sitting still or on the run"  Where might Santa sit?  A chair?  A couch?  A bench?  How might Santa run?  A jogger?  A race?  A criminal?  (Have to consider all possibilities!)**

TAKEAWAY: Mobile, not stationary.

Clue #2
Santa Claus
He or she
Anywhere on earth
I could be

**Clue Analysis: "He or she"..."Anywhere on earth" Santa could be a man or woman.  Santa may not necessarily be in Lansing.**

TAKEAWAY: Not in Lansing

Clue #3
Ho, ho, ho
Low or High
Santa could be far away
Or very nearby

**Clue Analysis: "Low or high"..."far away or very nearby" Is Santa on a mountain?  Again, Santa may not necessarily be in Lansing... or he/she could be even closer than just "in Lansing."**

TAKEAWAY: Not in Lansing

Clue #4
Where I am today
May see a winter storm
Or perhaps I'm wearing shorts
Because it is so warm

**Clue Analysis: "Where I am today"..."wearing shorts" Where in the world saw or expected winter weather on Tuesday?  Does Santa like to wear shorts?**

TAKEAWAY: Current weather conditions for that day called for winter weather

Clue #5
Assemble the clues
to find the key
Listen for the cue
to call and find me

**Clue Analysis: "find the key"..."listen for the cue to call" What does Santa mean by 'key?'  To win, listen**

TAKEAWAY: Keystone, South Dakota

BREAKING: SANTA IS NOT AT A CATA BUS STATION.

Clue #6
I'm not on the bus

next to you in the seat
I've recently been spending
a lot of time on my feet

**Clue Analysis: "not on the bus"..."time on my feet" Confirms he/she's not at a CATA bus station.  Is he/she standing a lot?  Walking?  Running?**

TAKEAWAY: Walking or hiking

Clue #7
I hope that you all had
a Happy Thanksgiving
I'd say, as for me, that
I'm really living

**Clue Analysis: "really living" He/she feels alive?  Is doing something fun, exciting or exhilarating?**

TAKEAWAY: Doing an activity.

Clue #8
The election is over
At least, that's what they said
But, normally, I don't like to get
Too "four" ahead

**Clue Analysis: "election"..."four" Why mention the election?  What significance does the number four have?  What significance does it have to the sentence it's in?  What significance does it have to the election?**

TAKEAWAY: America, Mt. Rushmore

Clue #9
North, east, south, or west
Wearing a backpack or a festive vest
Dressed for the occasion, you bet I'll be
When the time comes that you find me

**Clue Analysis: "North, east, south, west"..."backpack or festive vest"..."Dressed for the occasion"  Santa could be anywhere, but do North, east, south or west have specific significance?  Why would Santa wear a backpack?  His bag?  What is his festive vest?  What occasion is he dressing for?**

TAKEAWAY: South Dakota, hiking

Clue #10
Helpful analysis can be found online
And it might be the key to your lucky find

**Clue Analysis: "key"..."lucky" The word 'key' has popped up again.  What would make one lucky?  Winning $1,000?**

TAKEAWAY: Keystone, South Dakota

Clue #11
You wanted a clue,
Well here it is
You're running out of time
to find me before Christmas

**Clue Analysis: "clue"..."time" Is the word clue a clue other than just being part of a clue?  :-O  Clock?  Watch?  Jewelry!  (Terry's Jewelry & Gifts)**

Clue #12
Your next chance to guess
where I've chosen to hide
Is Thursday morning
So analyze online and decide

**Clue Analysis: "chosen"..."analyze online and decide" Choice vs. force?  Duty?  Responsibility?  Make use of this analysis at 99wfmk.com.  Decide?  Decide on a guess?**

Clue #13
Searching for Santa
Must be such a rush
The search will end quickly
If I don’t hush

**Clue Analysis: "such a rush" What relevance is 'rush?'  Excitement?  Energy?  Anxiety?  Something else?

TAKEAWAY: Mt. Rushmore

BREAKING: SANTA IS NOT ON A SOUTHWEST AIRLINES PLANE

Clue #14
Seventy five years
I’ve waited to see
Such a fabulous creation
Should be in the likeness of me

**Clue Analysis: "Seventy five years"..."a fabulous creation"..."likeness of me"  What has been around for 75 years?  What fabulous creation is Secret Santa referring to?  What should be in his/her likeness?**

TAKEAWAY: Mt. Rushmore celebrating 75th anniversary since it's creation

BREAKING: SANTA IS NOT IN TIMES SQUARE

Clue #15
Breakfast sounds nice
But there's no time to pause
An extra grand for gifts
Is a mighty good cause

**Clue Analysis: "No time to pause"..."mighty good cause" Santa won't be at St. Vincent for breakfast.**

Clue #16
I'll share some numbers
To help you out
4, roughly 60 for 75
And millions upon millions, without a doubt

**Clue Analysis: "numbers to help you out".."4, roughly 60 for 75 And millions upon millions" What do these numbers represent?  People?  Years?**

TAKEAWAY: Four Presidents featured at Mt. Rushmore, each is roughly 60 feet tall, Mt. Rushmore is celebrating its 75th anniversary, more than two million people visit each year

Clue #17
Though I would like
to eat breakfast with you
The snacks that I packed
Will have to do

**Clue Analysis: "eat breakfast with you"..."snacks that I packed" Santa won't be eating breakfast in a public space.  Why did he/she pack snacks?  Long work day?  Traveling?  Hiking or camping?**

TAKEAWAY: Hiking

TEAM INTEL: We're focusing on some "basic truths" based on all 17clues we've heard so far, as well as what we know from the three guesses that have been made over the past two weeks.  The following information represents what we consider to be some of the best ideas to further analyze in order to find Secret Santa.

1. Santa is on earth. [2]
2. Santa is not sitting. [6,7,9,11,15 - not at a CATA bus station, not on a Southwest Airlines plane]
3. Santa is not on/in water. [2,6]
4. Santa is walking or running. [1,6,7,11,15]
5. The word "key" is a significant clue. [5,10]
6. Santa is carrying or wearing a backpack. [9,17]
7. Santa is participating in an exciting activity. [7,13]
8. Santa is in America. [8]
9. Santa is in or at a place bearing the name "North," "East," "South," or "West" [3,9]
10. Santa is in a cool climate, likely the central U.S. or midwest [4,9]
11. 4 is an significant number relative to where Santa is. [8,16]
12. The place where Santa is or what he/she's looking at is 75 years old. [14,16]
13. Santa is exploring something man-made, possibly the depiction of a person. [14]
14. Santa is not in Times Square.

What we still don't know:

Is Santa a man, woman, boy or girl and does it matter?
Is Santa at a low or high elevation?
What significance do the numbers "roughly 60" and "millions upon millions" have?

Before we could post or analyze any additional clues Secret Santa was located.  Congratulations Robin of Jackson!