Thursday, January 20, 2022

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Break a mental sweat with pub trivia


This is last month’s pub quiz winners, Quiz On My Face, with the trophy DonkeyTaco. Emcee Lee Reighard stands in the back pointing at the group.

This is last month’s pub quiz winners, Quiz On My Face, with the trophy DonkeyTaco. Emcee Lee Reighard stands in the back pointing at the group.

So often sports are tied to the definition of “an activity involving physical exertion and skill in which an individual or team competes against another or others for entertainment.” And why not? It would seem at the very least the physical exertion should be mandatory. But let’s take a look at in a different way. What about breaking a “mental sweat?”

“Is there really anything better than getting together with friends, having a few beers and mentally sparring to find out who’s the smartest team in the room?” said Derek Snyder of bar trivia team Quiz On My Face. “Besides us of course.”

For Snyder, 27, the choice venue is Quinton’s in the East Village. One reason is that it’s the most convenient place for his friends to get together. The other is Lee Reighard, the emcee and question master of Quinton’s Pub Quiz.

With a master’s degree in education, Reighard is the perfect candidate for a host. He is one to constantly keep up on current events and regularly compiles potential questions for quizzes. But what’s even better is he’s open to new topics.


“When I’m putting questions together, I want it to be a good mix of pop culture stuff but also feature scholastic and academic trivia as well,” Reighard said. “I try to organize it for new and old audiences. I’m trying to appeal to anyone who might show up.”

Last week’s categories ranged from “Famous Foursomes” to “Female Country Singers” to “Dragon Ball Z” to “World Geography” and even a multiplication table lightning round. Do you know Goku’s Saiyan name? What about The Beatles’ first drummer? The country Afghanistan borders to the west?

“It’s a great mix of questions, because even the difficult ones tend to be things that I should know, like the geography bit,” said Snyder.

“I’m probably the oldest (guy) here, and I’m having fun,” said Bob, age 60. “Some of the young people here are the brightest of their generation. But really, it’s not easy to win. This is definitely a higher IQ-level pub quiz.”

Aside from the door prizes and drink/appetizer raffle prizes, folks at Quinton’s are competing for the coveted DonkeyTaco trophy, which is a Rastafarian penguin. The team with the most points at the end of the month wins and keeps the DonkeyTaco until next month’s winner is named.

But when all is said and done, what makes a pub quiz fun and challenging are the people there. All around Des Moines there are pub quizzes, and the real competition might be drink specials at each bar. So head in after a long day, raise a glass and speak softly so no one steals any answers. CV

David Rowley is an Iowa native with a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Iowa and a master’s in film journalism from the University of Glasgow in Scotland.


Find a pub quiz near you:
Gas Lamp — Tuesdays at 7:30 p.m.
Blue Moon Dueling Piano Bar, West Des Moines — Tuesdays at 8 p.m.
Doc’s Lounge, Johnston — Tuesdays and Saturdays 9 p.m.
Mickey Finn’s — Wednesdays at 7 p.m.
Quinton’s — Wednesdays at 8 p.m.
The Ridgemont, Windsor Heights — Wednesdays at 8:30 p.m.
Keg Stand, West Des Moines — Thursdays at 8:30 p.m.


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