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Original article

February 5, 2008

Woody's Brain Trust
By: The Pella Chronicle

02/05/2008
Small town bar goes big time in trivia game

Woody's Sports Bar on Main St. has featured a trivia game called Buzztime for 4 years. It is an internationally televised, interactive game where you can choose to play against each other in the bar, or collectively match your wits against the rest of the continent. Their games feature all sports, all music, all entertainment, or general knowledge, depending on what day or night you show. It has quite a cult following, and some of America's and Canada's biggest eggheads show off their stuff on a regular basis. Even Jeopardy champ Ken Jennings has a login nickname, and plays occasionally.

Woody's Bar's performance on Buzztime has opened the occasional eye. Every so often someone comes into the bar and mentions they have seen Woody's Bar on many of the "Top 20 Locations" lists plastered on the screen after each game is over, so they thought they would come in and check out the place.

One of the websites that keeps track of the performance of the various locations that feature Buzztime is ntn.donrdenton.com. He keeps track of Top 100 performances on Buzztime's most played games, and tabulates who are the best and most prolific locations at each game. He also keeps track of overall performances of the locations, based on all games involved.

Some of the patrons at Woody's, collectively nicknamed "The Brain Trust", took it upon themselves to see how high they could rank in the overall rankings on this website. But to do so, they needed to average one Top 100 placing per month in each of the games involved for an entire calendar year.

After considerable hours logged in by many different people throughout 2007, they pulled off the task of at least 12 Top 100 finishes in every game involved, guaranteeing they would have a qualifying score in each game. Woody's was one of only two locations to accomplish this feat, and in doing so, they ranked #2 in North America.

Recently, some of Woody's patrons have gathered together and driven to Nevada, Iowa for a series of trivia contest fund raisers that Nevada High School has held. And they performed rather well in their three times of going up: Of the 30+ teams that have played each night, Pella's team has finished fourth, first, and second in their respective visits. One of the team members, Doug De Wolf, passed the preliminary test to get on the Jeopardy show; alas, he wasn't called to be on, although two of the people who passed with him did.

Pella is holding their first annual Trivia Bowl Fund Raiser coming up February 2nd, at 7pm at the Vermeer Global Pavilion Arena. Teams are comprised of six to eight people, and entry fee is $10.00 per person. Many different categories will be covered in the event: Pop Culture, History, Sports, Music, and others; much the same as what you would get in a Trivial Pursuit game. So regardless of what you know, there should be some subject that covers your personal expertise. There will be at least $400 in winnings and door prizes given out during this event. Feel free to bring anything you want to eat or drink; alcohol is not permitted at the Trivia Bowl, however. There are no reservations required, just show up before 7pm to grab a table. If there are any questions, you may call Spence Ver Meer at 641-628-3166. Proceeds for this event benefit Calvary Christian Reformed Church Video Ministry in Pella.

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