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Guest Puzzle December 2012  "Theaters" by Kevin Cadmus

Instructions: Guess the words defined by the cryptic clues (answers vary in length from four to eleven letters, seven are capitalized, two are acronyms, and two consist of two words) then enter them in the grid one after another in the same order as their clues, starting in the upper left corner. Across words that don't end at the right continue on the next row, and down words that don't end at the bottom continue in the next column. Seven across words and four down words won't fit in the grid unless one of their letters is omitted. Those eleven letters, taken in order as they occur in across and down words, spell a two-word phrase related to the mystery entries. If you are having trouble printing these puzzles, you can download an Adobe Acrobat version of the puzzle and grid.


  1. Mystery Entry
  2. A star backing up for rear exit
  3. Discover resistance in incline
  4. To castrate grasping the middle of knife is cold
  5. Wide open love
  6. Be a bird and get lost
  7. Incompetent having no reaction with party leader replacing Republican
  8. Prize fight interrupting commercial
  9. Refuse replacing author with English character
  10. Judge's action holds back lawsuit
  11. Notice communist returning planter
  12. Wild West has greeting for Caucasians
  13. Audibly, permission granted to the audience
  14. Lets in cast for old movie
  15. Emphasize cutting front hair
  16. Animal ooze contains hydrogen
  17. Ben is absurd playwright
  18. Opera for certain Asians
  19. Nobel Peace Prize winner's costume
  20. Having sufficient testosterone, ground liver has a bit of iron
  21. Boundary vapor temperature dropped
  22. A dish of many ingredients heading off disease
  23. Mystery Entry


  1. One lion goes after female scientist
  2. Take-off or landing area
  3. Harmonious in duet arrangement
  4. Maniacally hit Sue's buttocks
  5. Examined IUD . . . date upset
  6. Cold dish regrettably brought back before the start of dessert
  7. More sensible shake-up nears
  8. More timid Hobbit's home by the sound of it
  9. First name of accused spy is awfully large
  10. Lies we disseminated for Nobel Peace Prize winner
  11. Some year's spring
  12. Latin American revolutionary backing abhorrence for feline
  13. Officer likely captured by first assassin
  14. Cat heart, for example, stops short with onset of angina
  15. NASA really grasps space
  16. Site botched search for smart aliens
  17. Without further ado, big storm ripped up
  18. Most recent two compass directions
  19. Male losing tail has beginning of big round protuberance
  20. Hindu music coming back as a culture medium
  21. Infectious illness defaces without a trace of a cure
  22. Purple alien goes after instrument
  23. Wipe out eastern state losing a war
  24. High level Costa Rican man has a bit of illness