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Trivial Pursuits

Do you want an excuse for some friendly competition? Perhaps you know more about Jim and Pam or Jerry and Elaine than that project due next week? Do you retain odd amounts of, well, trivial information?

Trivia nights are cropping up all over Acadiana’s bars. Whether it’s on the weekends or weekdays, and whether it’s tailored to specific shows and interests or a free-for-all of questions, trivia nights have become a popular way to engage in nightlife.

One longtime emcee is Jay Steiner. Steiner hosts Saint Street Inn’s Tuesday Night Tacos and Trivia, which features weekly prizes and off-the-menu tacos exclusive to trivia night. 

“I've been doing it since 2013, and there was really just the Buzztime trivia around town at the time. I think people like having a social event where they can have something to do other than just drinking and small talk,” said Steiner.

Although Tuesday nights are not known for drawing major crowds to hip bars, Saint Street and its overflowing crowds have proven an anomaly.

“It's also nice for many guests to have something earlier in the night,” said Steiner. “Live music is great, but not everyone is used to staying up to 2 a.m. on a Tuesday night.”

Saint Street’s trivia is rarely themed, according to Steiner.

“I pick four categories for the night. Some are topical, some pop culture, some are just a little absurd. Having a nice mixture of right brain and left brain topics keeps players on their toes, and it makes sure everyone feels like they can contribute to the game,” he said.

Contrastingly, The Wurst Biergarten frequently hosts themed trivia nights put on by hilarity collective Lafayette Comedy. Owner Joshua Wells noted that such trivia nights have always been a fun way to engage with clientele, whether it was live or through small screens.

“But what I think really made trivia nights boom is when other establishments noticed the success of our themed trivia nights put on by Lafayette Comedy,” said Wells. “Thus far, they have all been sold out crowds. Jason Leonard of Lafayette Comedy picks all the themes and really knows how to turn trivia into not just a fun competition, but live entertainment as well.”

As one would expect, the themes for the Biergarten’s trivia are comedy-centric. Leonard challenges attendees’ knowledge of favorite shows, like” Parks and Recreation,” and the upcoming “Southpark” trivia night to be held July 5. Although Wells said almost all of the upcoming trivia nights are laid out for the year, a public poll from earlier this week determined the latter theme.

“Themed trivia is really the way to go, in our opinion,” Wells said. “By making it themed we cater to a specific audience each time who want to prove that they know the most about that theme.”

Other downtown venues, like Legends, and Rêve Coffee Roasters, have also followed suit with themed nights related to “Friends,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” and more.  Rêve will host its Jurassic Park Trivia Night this Thursday.

“We love that other places downtown are starting to do it this way,” Wells said. “All about teamwork on Jefferson Street.”


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