Trivia pursuit

When the holiday hustle is over, finding ways to stay occupied during the long stretch of wintry days that follow can be a challenge, especially for those who shiver at the thought of spending them outside. Luckily, there’s bar trivia — the perfect way to use all that excess knowledge soaked up from books, movies and other media consumed on a gross scale when the days are short and the weather is frightful. We’ve put together a list of Southwest bars that offer stellar trivia nights, all of them free, along with some basic information about each one.

Most are pretty popular this time of year, so we recommend arriving early to claim a table, especially if you’re going with a throng of friends. And trivia participants beware: most emcees police for cell-phone use, so looking up answers or using a lifeline won’t fly. Each spot has its own spin on questions, which are often developed by the emcees. So try a few places; try them all. It’s a way to keep busy at least a couple nights a week.


Sauce Spirits & Soundbar
Address:
3001 Lyndale Ave. S.    
Day/Time: Mondays, 8 p.m.
Emcee: Joe Hanstad and Noah Paster
Format: Paper and pencil
Genre: Whatever interests Hanstad and Paster
Participation: Solo or teams of up to six
Cost: Free
Prizes: First place: $40 gift card to Sauce, second place: two guest list spots to any show, third place: a wooden nickel for each team member good for a tap or rail drink
Difficulty: 3/5
Specials: None
Phone: 822-6000
Website: spiritsandsound.com, joeandnoah.blogspot.com
Sample Question: This Italian term literally translates to “before the pasta” and refers to an assortment of appetizers before the main meal.

Leaning Tower of Pizza
Address: 2324 Lyndale Ave. S.
Day/Time: Tuesdays, 8:30 p.m.
Emcee: Varies by week
Format: Paper and pencil
Genre: Varies
Participation: Solo or team
Cost: Free
Prizes: First place: $50 Leaning Tower of Pizza gift certificate, second place: $25 Leaning Tower of Pizza gift certificate
Difficulty: 1/5
Specials: Some beer specials
Phone: 377-3532
Website: leaningtowermpls.com
Sample Question: In what year were the first Emmys awarded?

Green Mill
Address: 2626 Hennepin Ave.
Day/Time: During football season, Tuesdays, 8:30 p.m.; Mondays, 8:30 p.m.
Emcee: Matt Marta
Format: Paper and pencil
Genre: Varies, emcee and manager create questions
Participation: Solo or teams of up to eight players
Cost: Free
Prizes: First place: $30 Green Mill gift card, second place: $20 Green Mill gift card, third place: $10 Green Mill gift card
Difficulty: 4/5
Specials: $10 mystery pitcher, $3 margaritas
Phone: 374-2131
Website: greenmill.com
Sample question: Alfonzo Coreon, Chris Columbus, Mike Newell, David Yates. What do all these movie directors have in common?

Galactic Pizza
Address: 2917 Lyndale Ave. S.
Day/Time: Tuesdays, 9–10:30 p.m.
Emcees: Captain Awesome and Doctor Tomorrow
Format: Paper and pencil
Genre: Mostly pop culture, emcees create the questions
Participation: Solo or teams of up to six
Cost: Free
Prizes: Winning team receives 50 percent off their table’s tab
Difficulty: 3.5/5
Specials: None
Phone: 824-9100
Website: galacticpizza.com    
Sample question: Project A-119 was a Cold War plan to intimidate Russia with a demonstration by detonating a nuclear weapon on a “terminator line,” which is located where?


Sample question answers:
Sauce answer: Antipasto
Green Mill answer: All directed Harry Potter movies.
Leaning Tower answer: 1949
Galactic Pizza answer: The moon.