You can stop your search for Washington's "buried treasure."
Karyl Irion, 26, and Neil Schuster, 28, of Oakton, Va., put their heads together and cracked the mystery that has filled Washingtonians with treasure-madness when they discovered the case of Canadian Club whiskey that was hidden by the Hiram Walker Co. as a promotional stunt.
"We started talking about it Tuesday afternoon. By midnight Wednesday, Karyl knew where the case was hidden," said Schuster. "I kept telling her, 'It can't be,' but she turned out to be right."
Classes and jobs kept the treasure-hunters from their discovery until Saturday afternoon.
"The ad said 'Go to a spot with three banks.' [That was Wisconsin and M, with two commercial banks and the Rive Gauche restaurant, which translates "Left Bank."] From the highest bank, we walked to the nearest bridge [the C&O bridge, spanning the Canal in Georgetown], then backtracked 100 paces, like it said in the ads," Irion said. "At that point we were right over the steel trap doors which lead into the cellar of Nathan's," she added.
Irion followed the ad's instructions to the letter, which called for the funder to "ask for the person in charge and say 'CC, please.'"
Greg Doherty, general manager of Nathan's said, "They walked in at a quarter to three on Saturday.She said, 'This may sound really foolish, but CC, please!' I said, 'Honey, it's yours!' She couldn't believe it -- started jumping up and down and screaming. The people in the bar didn't know what was going on."
Only Doherty, the Canadian Club representative and the owner of Nathan's knew the case was "buried" there. "I feel really foolish. I sat on top of the case -- it was in a cardboard box marked 'personal records,'" said Nathan's night manager, Martin Gold.
Gold added that about a dozen people figured out the clues, but either failed to say the magic words or asked for the wrong person.
The case was found 3 1/2 weeks after the campaign started, making it one of the fastest discoveries. "In major cities, it usually takes an average of eight weeks," said Rich Goldblatt, spokesman for Hiram Walker.
The case hidden on Kilimanjaro was found after 10 years, the longest period; the case hidden in Chicago was found in six days, making it the quickest discovery, according to Goldblatt.
"We expected it to be found quickly in Washington -- the home of sleuths, the CIA and intelligent people," Goldblatt said.
The winners were announced by Trumbull and Core on WMAL-AM radio yesterday afternoon. The case of Canadian Club will be presented at a party and press conference at Nathan's this afternoon.