Trivia nights’ are gaining popularity at many local nightspots, including Pullman’s venerable Rico’s Pub
By MICHELLE SCHMIDT | INLAND360.COM
Take a point if you correctly answered “trivia nights.” A number of local establishments offer them as a chance for people to compete, socialize and show off their storehouses of knowledge.
Among them is Rico’s Pub, home to a free weekly trivia night tradition that began around 2006, said Robert McKinnon “Mick” Wilkes, who’s helped to coordinate the Tuesday night event since 2012. Maybe the best way to find out more, though, is to test your knowledge with the following Rico’s Trivia Night trivia:
1. What is the primary distinction of Rico’s trivia night?
A) It’s been a donation-based fundraising activity since its beginning
B) Live roaming tigers are used to scare the answers out of participants
2. The longest, most successful fundraising campaign was:
A) $5,000 raised for Free the Slaves, an organization that fights modern slavery
B) $20 raised for Joey’s Beer Fund
3. For every dollar donated, participants get a raffle ticket for the chance to win:
A) A prize donated from local businesses
B) A swift kick in the pants
4. The typical number of prizes and awards given every night is:
A) 10: four awards for winning trivia categories, five raffle prizes and one giveaway
B) Everyone’s a winner
5. For the four trivia categories, the weekly host selects three and is given one by:
A) The losingest team of the previous week
B) A domesticated monkey in India who picks a category from a spreadsheet
6. The minimum number on a trivia team is one; the maximum number is:
A) Unlimited, unless otherwise stated by the night’s host
B) Whatever the building occupancy code states, less one
7. The typical number of trivia night participants is:
A) Around 30
B) More than the stars in the sky
8. How many trivia questions are asked each night?
A) 40: 10 questions in four categories
B) 365: one for each day of the year
9. Trivia categories are typically announced in advance so that:
A) People know what to expect
B) Team members can put in the required six hours of study prior to competition
10. Besides getting a chance to show off what you know, learn stuff, win prizes and benefit a local cause, trivia night participants typically also enjoy:
A) Interacting with other humans instead of staring at a screen
B) Riding the event’s mascot, a former circus elephant kept out back
Answers: If you answered A to all of the above, you’re a trivia pro – consider hitting a local trivia night soon. Here’s more about the above answers:
1. Rico’s Trivia Night is a free event but has been a fundraising activity from the get-go. The arrangement not only benefits the organization involved but raises awareness for local and international issues. The fundraising recipient for 2017 is Pullman’s Community Action Center.
2. A couple years ago, the trivia night collected $5,000 to fight human trafficking with donations to www.freetheslaves.net. More people are enslaved today than most realize, Wilkes said, and the fundraising effort both educated participants and helped the cause.
3. Local businesses have gotten in on the fun, donating gift cards as raffle prizes for a fundraising incentive. Current business partners are Cafe Moro, Palouse Country Candy, Palouse Games, Safari Pearl Comics and Zelda’s Pet Grooming. Donations are not required for trivia night participation.
4. Sure, you could say that everyone gets something out of participating in trivia night, but there are also 10 prizes that are won besides. In addition to the raffle drawing for those that donate, the winning team for each of the four trivia categories gets a $10 Rico’s gift card. There’s usually also a game halfway through the trivia event that results in one giveaway.
5. As an incentive to return the next week for a win, the team with the least amount of points each evening gets to pick a trivia category for the following week. Hosts pick the remaining three categories. The host then creates questions for each category based on their research and runs the trivia portion of the event, which includes asking questions, scoring and keeping things moving along. There’ve been more than 100 hosts in the past five years.
6. If you have 20 smart friends, you can form a team to dominate the competition. In his years of experience, however, Wilkes has found that teams over seven tend to get hard to manage. Trivia teams are usually made up of people who know each other.
7. The numbers vary week to week, but on average there are around 30 people who come out for trivia each night. On nights when there’s likely to be a low turnout – during the holidays, for example – trivia night will often take the week off. Stay updated at www.facebook.com/ricospublichouse.
8. Each of the four categories gets 10 questions. Categories lean toward pop culture, Wilkes said – ’90s R&B and rap, “Archer” (TV series) and the history of Nintendo are recent examples. But there’s also been subjects like GMOs, murderers and miscreants in literature and conservation. Learning something along the way is part of the draw, Wilkes said.
9. Trivia categories are announced in advance on Rico’s Facebook page and on a group email. Studying ahead is an option, but by no means expected or even common. Wilkes has personally found that studying doesn’t necessarily help.
10. Enjoying actual human interaction is what Wilkes loves about trivia night. “I don’t care about trivia, but I care about this,” he said. Entertainment these days tends to be passive and screen-based, he added, and it’s fun to be part of something lively, interactive and mentally stimulating.
To find other local trivia events or to submit your own, visit the events calendar at www.inland360.com.