Wendy Lopez said she and her sons had been following the clues for weeks in the Patterson Irrigator and on Twitter.
Perseverance paid off when Lopez found the piece of wood with the fiesta treasure note by the Patterson Fire Station on West Las Palmas Avenue.
“It was a wood piece with a pointy edge,” Lopez said. “I found it and turned it around and saw the note. Then I said to Corey, ‘We found the treasure! How exciting! I knew it would pay off.’”
Lopez and her sons, Corey, 19, and Wesley, 11, have been treasure hunters for the past three years and dove into the clues when they started a few weeks ago. Wesley was in school the day of the recent find, but he and his dad are both included in the spending plan.
“Last year we came close, but now we got it,” Lopez said. “I thought they were easier clues than last year. How exciting — $200! We’re going out to dinner!”
Corey Lopez is also going to spread the wealth.
“My money is going to be spent on the fiesta,” Corey Lopez said.
Clues and explanation follow:
1. I’m in the heart of the 100-year-old city. (Inside the boundary of El Circulo.)
2. Bill paying time? Just drive by and put it in the slot. (There are many slots nearby — post office, city offices, phone company and PG&E.)
3. Quiet, please. Sorry, Mrs. Spooner. (Refers to the old library in the Carnegie Building on West Las Palmas, where Curtis and Arata office is located. Mrs. Spooner was a former librarian.)
4. Number please: Tyler 20041. (The former Evans Telephone Company office, where Dr. Freda Chin’s office is, is located on West Las Palmas Avenue.)
In addition to these clues, which ran in the print edition of the Irrigator in recent weeks, many hints were posted on the Irrigator’s pages on Twitter and Facebook.