Vandal Entertainment brought the popular touring trivia event Nerdology to the Vandal Ballroom for a night of games, trivia and prizes from the Vandal Store Thursday.
The event, hosted by Byron Kennerly and Matt Gerard, engaged the crowd with pop culture trivia and quiz challenges, such as naming all of the core classes in “Harry Potter,” identifying popular songs played in reverse and attributing quotes to either Lex Luthor, the Joker or Donald Trump.
Kennerly said that Nerdology started last year and has been touring the country ever since.
“We started as an improv team like ‘Who’s Line is it Anyway,’” Kennerly said. “And students and schools were asking for more events like this, so we thought why don’t we do that?”
The quiz they have created has a nerdy feeling to it Kennerly said.
“We wanted to celebrate the whole sci-fi, ‘Harry Potter’ stuff because it’s getting a little more mainstream,” Kennerly said.
Ryan Donahue, Vandal Entertainment’s late night programs chair, thought that the event showed a lot of potential for fun.
“I went to California for a conference last semester and they ran it there,” Donahue said. “They were wearing their nerd hats and one guy was wearing a ‘Stranger Things’ shirt. They were like a goofy, quirky crowd and they seemed really easy to have fun with.”
Attendees of the event formed teams to compete in the challenges, with such nerdy team names as The Fig Neutrons, Full Mental Alchemists, The Dork Side and The Space Campers.
At the end of the competition, a team called The Rastafarian Targaryens, named after “Game of Thrones,” won the night. The team, comprised of Kaelee Mayer, Cameron Cochems and Jamie Newsome, were trailing in the competition, but pointed out an error in the scoring that, once corrected, sealed their victory.
Mayer attributed the team’s victory to their collective knowledge of nerd properties, such as “Harry Potter” and “Game of Thrones.” Mayer and Newsome are diehard “Potter” fans, while Cochems has read all of “Game of Thrones.”
“I met the two guys (Kennerly and Gerard) at the Corner Club last night,” Cochems said. “And they seemed pretty funny, so my girlfriend and I decided to come in.”
Kennerly said that he enjoys interacting with students at Nerdology events.
“You never know what the kids are going to say next,” Kennerly said. “That’s my favorite part.”
Bradley Burgess can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org