NYT Crossword Answers: Mark in the World Golf Hall of Fame

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I admit that I had a little trouble understanding the theme of this puzzle, which seems a bit too simple, but maybe I think about it too much. Each of the four theme entries is a common term or phrase in which the first word of the term or phrase is hidden in the rest, with circles around the letters that make up the first word. For example, the first topic index is 17A: “Information not usually found in the yellow pages”. However, when you enter the letters into the grid, you end up writing PHONE NUMBERS, which, uh, a lot are found in the yellow pages. However, the letters H, O, M and E in PHONE NUDEMBERS are circled, so the full entry is actually HOME PHONE NUMBERS. It makes more sense!

I expected the other theme entries to follow this same pattern, in which the words entered into the grid are a surprising or unexpected response to the clue. So I was a bit confused when the second thematic clue, “Creative activity for primary school students”, led to the entry AND CRA FTS, with the A’s, R’s, T’s and S’s circled. AND CRAFTS is not a standalone answer or a surprising answer to the clue, so I felt a bit disappointed after the burst of (HOUSE) PHONE NUMBERS. The rest of the theme entries look more like this, with (FEAR) OF EE DARK and (CURRENCY) COLLECTIONOTS. In fact, the latter plays almost like the opposite of (HOME) PHONE NUMBERS: COLLECTIONS on its own would be just fine; COIN just adds a little more specificity to what numismatists collect.

This puzzle was a great illustration of the power of circled letters to add another layer or element to a crossword puzzle. Kudos to Mr. Dittrich for posting this puzzle. Let’s hear him talk about the entries that mean the most to him.

I dedicate this puzzle to my good friends Kier and Will, who introduced me to Iron Maiden’s FEAR OF THE DARK in college, when I was just an uncultivated pig. I’m still a pig, but at least now I have a broader taste in music.

The answer that matters most to me is DANSKO, since my mother was the artistic director before she passed away a few years ago. I recognize that this may be a difficult answer for people, so I apologize in advance. I can’t say that crossing it with TALESE seems entirely fair, in retrospect. Whoops.

Sorry to be a little skeptical here, but I’m very happy to have the name of my true love in the puzzle, too, with NINTENDO. Ah, the romance. Gaming is a big passion for me (and still my job, now that I work at Amazon at Prime Gaming). I hope you enjoy the puzzle, from one Elden Lord to another.

The New York Times Crossword has an open submission system, and you can submit your puzzles online.

For tips on how to get started, read our “How to Make a Crossword Puzzle” series.

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