teams make a fun-filled weekend of contest
Names range from silly to the 'profound'
than 500 teams, and an estimated 12,000 players, were expected to participate
in this year's 33rd annual "world-largest trivia contest."
Sponsored as a fund-raiser by the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point campus radio station, WWSP/FM 90, the contest traces its history to a 16-hour event held in February 1969.
Current contest coordinator Jim "The Oz" Olvia, who first began writing contest questions in 1978, shares question-writing duties these days with his co-conspirator in trivia mayhem, John Eckendorf.
This year's contest, with a poster featuring a cantankerous Archie Bunker, had an "All In the Family" theme.
Team names are always one of the most colorful aspects of the weekend trivia contest and this year's contenders did not disappoint.
this year's team monikers, ranging as always from the silly to the tasteless,
were Close-Enuf Construction Co. Inc.; We Got The Funk, But No Wagnalls;
The Minions of Chaos; No Good Deed Goes Unpunished; If It's Not Scottish,
It's Crap; The Raging Tyrannosaurus of Despair; Sparky's Dead; The Collective:
All In The Cube; Stifle Dingbat, We're All In The Terlit; Byte Me; Chronically
Mad-Cow Berkiebieners; Gene Autry's Ninja Warriors; Graduates Of A Lesser
God; Dyslexics Of The World Untie; Yoda's Academy of Polish Wisdom; Honey,
I Shrunk Their Minds; Space Monkey Mafia; and Trivia, Schmivia! Where's
Among Wisconsin Rapids-area teams playing this year were:
• A Lavish Display Of Ignorance, Port Edwards.
With two team members and "a lot of extras that come and go," this team depends on Sue Hay and Dan Hunter to man the telephones, as well as the kindness of friends, strangers and "people we meet on the street" for some answers, Hay said.
one of the few teams that plays without a computer, so we don't rack up
the points, but we have a lot of fun," she added. "Trivia is a driving
force for us. We have no control over it."
• University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point-Underware With Special Powers.
25 to 30 members, ranging in age from 8 months to 71 years, this Stevens
Point-based team includes Rose Lafler, Wisconsin Rapids, who served this
year as "team queen."
The team plays trivia because "it's the one time of the year this group of family and friends get together and pound our brains for the answers and just have an all-around good time," Lafler noted in an E-mail. "We set our goals each year and try our hardest to achieve them."
• Wanna Buy A Monkey?
A 30-member trivia team with both Wisconsin Rapids and Stevens Point "branches," this year's version of group had a Wisconsin Rapids captain, Dale J. Carlson. The Wisconsin Rapids headquarters was at the Alan and Lynn Panek residence.
do we play trivia?" Carlson asked in an E-mail. "Wow, let's open the Pandora's
box. It's fun, a contest of endurance, a challenge, a puzzle, and a competition.
People who normally don't see each other very much during the year have
an excuse to spend one weekend a year together, where we can have a good
time, stay up all night, eat a lot, wrack our brains, answer incredibly
silly questions, eat a lot, laugh, dance, sing, scream, play, and, oh yeah,
eat a lot!"
• Fossil Fuel: Got Gas?
Playing at the John and Nell Slinkman home in rural Wisconsin Rapids, the 15-20 members of this team range in age from 12 to mid-50s.
"It's such a challenge to find the answers," team member Brian Wilhorn wrote in an E-mail. "It's a thrill to find one and get it called in just as the second song ends, or to know one (the answer to a question) that not many teams know and get big points. So many people work together - you are successful together."