If you’re itching to pit your trivia talent against other intelligent (and slightly intoxicated) competitors, or simply looking for a little fun with friends, 405 Magazine has the spots for your pop-quiz showdowns.
The jovial disputes over the correct answer. The rapid scribbles on a sheet of paper. The triumph of the winning team’s fun-fact acumen, and the defeat of a failed trivial pursuit.
Trivia nights can be a thrilling throwdown of obscure tidbits, but for many attendees, it’s also a relaxing, fun excuse to spend time with friends and family over food and drinks. Oklahoma City is a trivia haven, with plenty of live games hosted by different groups on each day of the week.
One of these trivia organizers is Banjobug Trivia, which started five years ago after local quiz buff Wade Pierce decided to bring his backyard hangout games to the Press in the Plaza District. The company has since grown to offer games at six locations on five nights a week.
“It’s pretty laid-back,” Pierce said. “We don’t take it too seriously.” Each game has six rounds of five questions, and each round centers on a loosely defined theme — for example, a silver category might include questions about the fast-food fish chain and the NBA commissioner Adam Silver. Banjobug occasionally throws in local themes as well, such as menu items of Mexican restaurants in OKC. The winners take home a prize that’s decided by the hosting establishment, often a gift card to the same place.
Anyone that’s curious can drop in on a Banjobug game and play for free, either by themselves or with a large group, but regulars can build up their points to qualify for an invitational at the end of a three-to-four-month season. The top trivia masters are bestowed a WWE-style championship belt, $1,000 in cash and an offbeat offering from Pierce, such as a five-gallon jar of pickles.
Even if you’re faced with dedicated pop-quiz gurus, anyone can win. One year, Pierce said, a dominant eight-person group of regulars unexpectedly lost the final championship to a modest couple and their son. “It was really fun that the team that ended up knocking them off was this very unassuming 15th-place team that just had a really good day,” he said.
Hoot Industries, formerly known as The Lost Ogle Team Trivia, also runs a loose league of regulars who face off every 12 weeks in the Trivia Bowl. Hoot Industries offers seven free games on five nights a week and has hosted about 3,000 trivia nights since it began in 2010. There are four rounds of five questions, with the categories starting broad and growing more specific.
“There’s kind of an art to writing trivia questions,” said founder Patrick Riley. “You’re not trying to stump someone, but you want to drive conversation amongst people on the team.” For newcomers, he advises not to overthink any questions. “Nine times out of 10, it’s probably going to be somebody you’ve heard of.” While competition can fuel the fun, Riley emphasizes the importance of simply having a good time, as well as having a good, original team name. “Because maybe your trivia hosts will like you.”
The downtown OKC taproom of Stonecloud Brewing Company hosts free pub trivia from national quiz organizers Geeks Who Drink every Monday at 7 p.m. Games last about 2 hours and include about 60 questions.
Fair-Weather Friend is the home of Banjobug Trivia’s Monday night games at 7 p.m. Margherita pizzas will be $4 off at the taproom.
The pickleball palace Chicken N Pickle hosts Monday trivia games at 7 p.m. from national provider Challenge Entertainment. You can take to the court before testing your mind with three questions per each of the six rounds.
Hoot Industries holds its Monday night games at the Deep Deuce concept Bar Cicchetti at 8 p.m. When the weather’s right, enjoy the restaurant’s shaded patio.
Lively Beerworks hosts Tuesday night trivia at 7 p.m. courtesy of Banjobug Trivia. The brewery offers Bar Arbolada burgers for bites while brooding over answers.
Starting Aug. 9, Banjobug Trivia will also begin holding Tuesday night games at the expansive Chisholm Creek establishment Chalk Sports Bar at 7 p.m. Games will present questions and answers on the over 100 TVs at the bar.
Also on Tuesday nights in Chisholm Creek are Hoot Industries’ trivia games at Solo’s Park and Pub at 7 p.m. Feel free to bring your furry friends, as this restaurant and bar features an off-leash dog park.
Hoot Industries also holds Tuesday games at the German-style Midtown beer garden Fassler Hall at 8 p.m. Grab a brew for this battle of the brains.
McNellie’s OKC at the Midtown Plaza Court hosts laid-back, small-batch trivia from Geeks Who Drink at 8 p.m. Team sizes can be up to six players.
Challenge Entertainment’s Oklahoma arm presents games all over the 405 on Wednesday nights, sometimes with themes such as The Office or Friends nights. Okie Tonk Cafe in Moore hosts trivia with a wide variety of topics at 7 p.m. Henry Hudsons Pub in Yukon plays host to live trivia at 7 p.m. as well. Farther north in Stillwater, Iron Monk Brewing Company is Challenge’s 7 p.m. trivia meeting place. And in Norman, Othello’s Italian Restaurant is the Sooner go-to for live trivia at 7:30 p.m. And Classics Bar & Grill, the northern OKC dive bar, holds Challenge’s trivia games at 8 p.m.
Social Capital, a craft-beer bar across the street from Scissortail Park, hosts live trivia every Wednesday at 7 p.m. from Banjobug Trivia.
For Edmond trivia buffs, Frenzy Brewing Company has you covered every Wednesday at 8 p.m. with about 60 questions from Geeks Who Drink.
The classic dive Cock O’ The Walk is the Wednesday night home for Hoot Industries’ trivia games at 8 p.m. Before the game, grab a cue for a round of billiards in this smokey establishment.
One of the more popular Hoot Industries trivia events is every Thursday at 7 p.m. at Anthem Brewing Taproom, where $85 in prizes are on the line. Food trucks and other local pop-ups are frequent at this pop-quiz mainstay.
Challenge Entertainment also offers a handful of trivia competitions in the 405 every Thursday. Deep Deuce Grill in OKC is one of these fun-fact venues, hosting at 7 p.m., and Flatire Burgers in Edmond is the national trivia organizer’s 8 p.m. trivia destination.
The Deep Deuce craft-beer spot The Blok Bar is the Thursday night home for Banjobug Trivia at 8 p.m. Snag a local brew for drinking while thinking.
The Pump Bar holds its own popular trivia nights every Thursday at 8 p.m. Each night’s hosted by John Souders, who also suggests a monthly cocktail to quench your trivia thirst.
Hoot Industries offers a late-night trivia clash at Buffalo Wild Wings on NW Expressway every Friday at 7 p.m. With wings and two hours of questions, it’s a good entry point for a free Friday night.
Prairie Artisan Ales is Banjobug Trivia’s longest-running live trivia game, starting at 4:30 p.m. every Sunday. It’s also its biggest, so it might be your best bet if your trivia brain feeds off big crowds.