KenKen gained a new audience and continued to become a household name last week when the educational puzzle was featured on the Martha Stewart Show as part of the program’s live, one-hour Puzzle Show special.
Admittedly a traditional crossword player, Martha Stewart was introduced to the power and glory of KenKen by the world’s most well known Kenthusiast, New York Times crossword editor Will Shortz. Shortz illustrated to Stewart and the audience the rules of KenKen, as well as introduced some solving strategies as he navigated a large cutout of a 4×4 puzzle.
Before the program began, the television audience was given three KenKen puzzles to complete; the fastest two individuals appearing on set to compete against KenKen veteran Molly Olonoff. Olonoff, the reigning champion of the world’s first KenKen Tournament held last October in Chappaqua, New York, successfully defended her title with ease against the two elder contestants. Considering Olonoff is two years shy from completing her high school education, her repeated display of dominance is a true testament that KenKen knows no age boundaries.
KenKen’s cable television debut was a complete success as it was enjoyed by the show’s host and audience, and numerous positive feedback has been provided from those who viewed it from home. During its appearance, it was evident that those involved understood and appreciated the educational and leisurely value of “the puzzle that makes you smarter!™” There is little doubt KenKen will once again find its way in front of the camera soon.