River Festival

The 2019 Eagle Medallion Hunt starts this week, and there’s a big change for the clues

2017 Medallion winners share their secrets

The Matthew family talk about how they solved each day’s clues to find the medallion. They’ve been hunting for it each year since 1984.
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The Matthew family talk about how they solved each day’s clues to find the medallion. They’ve been hunting for it each year since 1984.

It’s that time of year again.

If you see strange people rummaging through wooded areas, investigating empty cans of Skoal and bags of Sunchips, don’t worry — they’re probably just looking for the Medallion.

The Eagle Medallion Hunt is a Riverfest tradition in which participants follow cryptic clues to search for a plastic coin, 2 inches in diameter, hidden on public property in Sedgwick County.

The prize? $1,000.

Only one person can claim the prize – so if you search as part of a team, you’ll have to designate one person to turn in the medallion. How you split the prize money is up to you.

The year, the hunt starts on Thursday and runs through June 6.

This year, there’s one major change.

The clues will be published exclusively on Kansas.com around 7 a.m. daily.

Clues will not appear in the print edition of the Wichita Eagle during the hunt.

Wichita Eagle executive editor Michael Roehrman said the aim of this change is to “level the playing field.”

“This way everybody gets the clue at the same time,” Roehrman said. “In previous years, certain people got their newspapers before others. Sometimes your QuikTrips and your Dillons would have copies before some people’s homes.”

Print subscribers of the Wichita Eagle already have unlimited digital access to Kansas.com — click the “Sign In” button on the top-right corner of our homepage, and follow the steps listed under “I’m a Print Subscriber” to activate your digital account if you’ve not done so already.

Non-subscribers can purchase a “Digital Day Pass” for 99 cents, which grants unlimited access to Kansas.com for one day.

Online-only subscriptions to Kansas.com are available starting at $1.99 for one month.

Go to Kansas.com/subscribe for more information on how to subscribe.

People can also come to The Wichita Eagle’s offices, 330 N. Mead, during normal business hours (9 a.m.-noon and 1-4 p.m. Mon.-Fri.) to see that day’s clue.

Last year, the Medallion was found on the last day of the hunt — hidden inside a pistachio bag in Meadowlark Park.

This is the 45th anniversary of the Medallion Hunt, nearly as old as the Riverfest itself.

The contest will end at midnight, June 6, or whenever the medallion is found. You have until 3 p.m. on June 7 to return the medallion to The Eagle’s headquarters at 330 N. Mead, or else no one wins the prize.

The contest is open to legal residents of Kansas who are at least 18 years old as of May 30, 2019. Employees and their immediate family members of The Wichita Eagle, the McClatchy Company, and Wichita Festivals Inc., and board members of Wichita Festivals Inc. and their immediate family, are not eligible to participate.

For full contest rules, visit www.kansas.com/riverfest.

Editor’s note: An earlier version of this story contained a wrong year in the rule about minimum age.

Matt Riedl covers arts and entertainment news for the Wichita Eagle and has done so since 2015. He maintains the Keeper of the Plans blog on Facebook, dedicated to keeping Wichitans abreast of all things fun.

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