Trivia events benefit charities while offering a fun night out

Trivia events have become a popular and lively avenue to fund-raise within the community.

Jason Sheppard

This question is a head-scratcher. A group of trivia buffs try to determine which country’s flag is displayed on the screen during a trivia contest at Bitter’s Pub and Restaurant in St. John’s. Jason Sheppard/Kicker.

Have you ever wanted to demonstrate your knowledge of pop-culture trivia or world history to your co-workers?

Are you able to match which movie The Simpsons is parodying from just seeing a still?

Can you name which song by Guns N’ Roses contains the name of a month of the year in its title?

Welcome to the world of organized trivia events.

Trivia events in St. John’s have become a fun and popular way for people to get together, show off a little and share a laugh.

For MUN student Tim Caudle, trivia events incorporate all these aspects.

Caudle has been hosting trivia events locally for eight years after he heard about their popularity in other parts of Canada.

“These events are popular because the money and time to put them together is really not consuming at all,” said Caudle.“With very little time to set them up and very little time to put into them, it’s really successful because then, no matter who comes in, you have money coming in, which is great.”

John Gushue, the digital senior producer of CBC NL, feels trivia events may be appealing to organizers because of their simplicity.

“All you need basically is someone to organize the questions and volunteers there to grade it,” said Gushue, who has organized trivia events for staff of CBC Television and CBC Radio.

“I think trivia is a great denominator because everybody knows a bit of everything,” added Gushue. “The key to these trivia nights is to have a team. If it’s just you, it’s not very fun, but if it’s six people, you talk, you laugh and you get into friendly rivalries with the people at the table next to you.”

For a good cause

Trivia organizers believe these events are ideal when it comes to fundraising for a cause.

Beginning in the early 2000s, Gushue used trivia events to raise money for the Bishop’s College improvisation team. He and his crew continued to hold trivia event fundraisers for the school up until its closure in 2015.

For Caudle’s most recent trivia event, his aim was to raise money to purchase a 3D printer for Medical Makers, a charity aimed at improving health care. This printer will help assist researchers in medical education and research initiatives locally and throughout the world.

Caudle, a student project director for Medical Makers, says he is now very close to his fund-raising goal, and any money left over from his trivia events will go towards educational programs in local schools.

So would Caudle consider his trivia events a success?

“A successful trivia event is having people show up because that means you get revenue,” said Caudle. “Even with minimal people, you can turn that into having fun with friends and enjoying it and having a laugh. So no matter what, it can be successful.”

Gushue also fondly remembers the enjoyment he experienced attending the trivia events he helped organized.

“It was crowded, it was noisy and tons of fun. The more the merrier for me. I think people want to support causes they like but if they get to have a night of fun out of it too, so much the better.”

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