This week's puzzle is a meta. Matt Gaffney, a master of the format and a longtime former AVCX constructor, collaborated with the brilliant Aimee Lucido to make it.
The puzzle comes with a piece of original artwork drawn specially for the occasion by New Yorker cartoonist Robert Leighton. And indeed, the image (attached here) is an integral part of the meta. Your instructions for the meta are as follows:
"The two children at this Seder (see attached drawing, or at avxwords.com/apr08/) are trying to 40-Across. But you can play 40-Across in this crossword grid, too! In fact, doing so will lead you to the contest answer. Send your answer to firstname.lastname@example.org by the end of Sunday, April 12 for a chance to win a prize.
(If this is your first meta crossword, see on.wsj.com/3e39DJy for instructions)"
One final note: this puzzle is, of course, solvable by anyone, alone or together. But it was made especially for families who can't be together for a Seder this week. The cluing is intergenerational; the idea is that perhaps some families might print and solve it together, remotely, helping one another through.