If you have walked anywhere on campus and looked at a poster, driven along Division Street, or tuned the radio to KVSC in the last month or so you were almost guaranteed to hear about KVSC’s annual Trivia Weekend what was held Feb. 12-14. If you didn’t participate, just imagine 50 consecutive hours of Jeopardy-like questions on all ends of the spectrum. People come from far and wide to get together with their groups of friends and family with the hope that they can take the title of the winning team for 2016.
The questions were written by a team of six volunteers, typically alumni of KVSC or UTVS, the campus’ television station. There is no strategy or logic in writing or choosing the questions, just whatever they think will keep listeners at the edge of their seats. There are both audio and visual questions that the teams must attempt to decipher. Once a question has been said on the air, teams scramble to research and do whatever they can to find the answer. But the writers style the questions so that you can’t simply ask Siri, you need to do a little digging. For example, the DJ would play a clip from a movie soundtrack, only three seconds long or so. Then you must figure out which movie it’s from. The points for each question are on a sliding scale – the harder questions are worth around 80 points, where easier questions are worth maybe 20 points.
One of the things that makes a marathon like this unique is that this is the 37th year that Trivia Weekend has been produced. Keep in mind, Google is only 18 years old. That is one of the things that has made this event so well known, not only the amount of years it has been running, but the alumni who remember working at the radio station when they were students.
The Goat Posse is a group of KVSC alumni who band together every year as a team to compete to win the Trivia Weekend and in 2004 they were inducted into the KVSC Trivia Hall of Fame. Many teams use a variety of different strategies to win the title. The winner for the past three years was pushed aside to second place this year. They lost to a team named “It Doesn’t Matter” who only won by 50 points. In fact, the top five teams were all supposedly within 100 points of each other.
When calling in to claim that they have the right answer, the teams call the phone bank. Now, imagine students who have been up way past their bedtime stuck in a room answering the phone. Boring? Nope! Have you ever seen the New York Stock Exchange before the closing bell? Now imagine having that for 50 consecutive hours and that’s a litter closer to what you might expect. The volunteers worked in three hour shifts but could take as many shifts as they could manage. The phones are constantly ringing from teams all over the country, sometimes internationally. There may be a five or 10-minute calm period while the DJ’s are switching shifts, but other than that, “WRONG!” or “CORRECT!” are the dominate phrases.
Once the marathon is over, everyone takes a deep breath, until they all get together for the awards ceremony. The local teams come up to celebrate their placement as each of the 59 teams’ rankings were announced.
Then, the countdown starts again for the KVSC 38th Annual Trivia Weekend, 2017.