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Know Stuff, Win Stuff at Trivia Night

Local company Trivia AD holds contests in and around Hoboken.

Quick, what was the name George Costanza wanted to give to his first born child on Seinfeld? Who guest-starred on Arrested Development as George Michael's ethics teacher? What newspaper did Carrie Bradshaw write for on Sex and the City?

If you can answer any of those questions you should consider competing in the next local Trivia AD contest. The company, founded by two Hoboken residents, holds television and movie themed trivia nights in and around New York.

“My family always told me I should enter a Seinfeld trivia contest because I've seen every episode 400 times,” Trivia AD's co-founder David Oliver said.

Since Oliver couldn't find one he started his own, in a bar in New York. Over 200 people came. With that success, Oliver, an art director by day, and his wife Kara, a Hoboken resident for thirteen years, founded Trivia AD last August. They run the trivia nights together with a roster of expert quiz hosts.

Each Trivia AD night is geared toward a particular show or movie and is divided into five rounds, including general knowledge, quotes, true or false, character identity and a lightning round. Altogether the night lasts less than two hours.

Oliver said on average a quiz host will spend two or three hours organizing questions for a trivia night, on top of the immeasurable time spent watching and re-watching episodes. He said the quiz hosts have to find questions that strike a balance.

“The questions can't be so easy where everyone always gets them, but if they're too hard then people get mad,” Oliver said.

As a rule, Oliver said Trivia AD tries very hard never to reuse questions, and also shuns lifting questions from the internet.

The company also has one other rule: no cheating. Oliver said most people play honestly and put away their smart phones, but that he's caught a few people cheating, including one man who had a laptop.

“Either I'll catch them, or someone from the other teams will,” Oliver said. Anyone caught cheating is disqualified.

Trivia AD often holds contests in bars, including Carpe Diem, Hudson Tavern, Liberty, Marty O'Brien's, Mulligan's and the Shannon in Hoboken and others in New York City, and also books corporate events, birthday parties and other gatherings. Oliver said the company gets its revenue from the bars and the private events.

“The restaurants benefit because we're bringing in people, especially on slower nights Monday through Wednesday,” Oliver said.

Oliver said the company also tries to get special prizes from sponsors connected to the show or movie, even sometimes from the actors involved. For example, a Seinfeld night might feature a script signed by Bryan Cranston, who played Jerry Seinfeld's smug dentist Tim Whatley (Cranston is also the guy from Malcolm in the Middle and Breaking Bad).

Oliver said that the trivia nights attract anywhere from 50 to 150 people depending on the location and theme. He thinks they're popular because they appeal to people with an interest.

“People really respond to the themes,” he said. “Women come up to me and say things like, 'I've been waiting my whole life for this, my sorority sisters and I used to watch Clueless all the time.”

Oliver said Trivia AD is open to suggestions if someone wants to put together a quiz for a new show. To find out how to do that, and also see the contest schedule, visit the Trivia AD website.

(Oh, and those answers are Seven, Heather Graham, and the New York Star.)

lorraine morgan September 03, 2012 at 03:49 PM
my friend has been to trivia nights in hoboken and said that people are cheating all the time , going on google etc for info from their phones, which of course takes the fun and challenge out of playing. If the place is crowded it would be near impossible to keep tabs on that.
FranzZimmer September 03, 2012 at 05:14 PM
What is even more sad than cheating is that the bars need to have these types of events to gather people in their places of business. 15 years ago everywhere was packed, lines to get in most places. This current administration has become a "car boot" on the entire hospitality industry in Hoboken. All the bar owners hate her and it is because of her that the bars have been suffering, the people who frequent the bars suffer too. Hoboken is the unofficial "6th Borough" of NYC. Stop chasing people away and allow them with open arms. If we need a better hoboken simply do not vote for her and more importantly vote for other city council people, these council people do as she says, they're robots not council people.
Journey September 03, 2012 at 05:53 PM
Or it could be with the economy people are being more frugal and not going out to the bar, and saving their money. Who goes to the pub when their employer just laid off a bunch of people and you might get laid off next? Many people going into NYC to party leave their cars behind and take public transit.
Hobbs September 03, 2012 at 06:58 PM
FranzMason, I could agree with your hate speak but then we would both be wrong. :-)
FranzZimmer September 03, 2012 at 09:42 PM
Her is in reference to Dawn Zimmer for those reading who would like to know who her is. Now Dawn Zimmer is going to kill the entire hospitality industry even further because she wants to revoke outdoor seating at restaurant and bars who don't sell enough food. She wants to make your favorite establishments inside only. Places like 1 Republik, Hudson Tavern, City Bistro, Stinky Sullivans, Turtle Club, 10th and Madison, Victor Hotel, Texas Arizona, Teak and many more are all on her radar because she thinks they sell too much booze and not enough food. Call her office and speak to her if you can get her on the phone or leave her message with her gopher Jason.
Scott M. Siegel September 03, 2012 at 09:53 PM
Total BS. Outdoor seating expansion will be approved. This means more not less. The only question will the bar pay by the table or square footage. This is the same tired false alarm trotted out last time by the Old Guard. They said outdoor seating would end then if Zimmer was elected, yet it still exists. Programs like Shop Hoboken have been adopted. The Mayor has worked hard to make Hoboken a Super Bowl destination. By cutting the levy 3 straight times she has made Hoboken more affordable.She wanted to repave our roads to help motorists and your side squashed it. Also most people who come here from out of town use mass transit. Take a look outside the PATH station on Thursday, Friday and the weekend late afternoon or evening.
Hobbs September 04, 2012 at 05:33 PM
Mason. Russo, Castellano and Occhipinti voted not to fund the repaving and upgrading of Washington Street and Sinatra Drive which even they agreed was needed and would have been a boon to Hoboken's bussinesses and the City as a whole. Thier continued political obstructionism could also cost Hoboken millions of dollars in lost grant money.
FranzZimmer September 05, 2012 at 09:26 AM
Attention Hoboken Residents Scott Siegel who is Dawn Zimmer's mouth piece is incorrect. But don't take me or him at face value, when the issue arises make your own assumptions. Then decide who was telling the truth and who lied.
puzzledone September 05, 2012 at 10:52 AM
Franz, Thank you. By reading the posts here, I have worked hard to figure out who I can and can't trust, and I do "make my own assumptions," although I'm not exactly sure what that means. Would you care to point out why he is incorrect, or why you are saying he is the Mayor's mouth piece? As you may know, unsubstantiated statements around here can get you in $2 million worth of trouble.
I am Spartacus September 05, 2012 at 12:20 PM
Impassable roads that are so full of potholes as to make driving on major streets so damaging to one's car that people would rather just not visit are what is going to drive customers away from area bars & restaurants. Where was your outrage when the minority pretty much killed the prospects of getting the major thoroughfares in town paved ZimmerHater?
FranzZimmer September 05, 2012 at 03:03 PM
Scott moved out of town and lives with his mom. His voice has no bearing on issues in Hoboken. I guess his paychecks stopped coming once that lawsuit hit? The people of Hoboken will soon see who these bloggers really are and how it all connects to those in charge of our once great city. People like I am Pincustacus will tell you lies to protect their friends who are about to be outed in a lawsuit that will cripple Hoboken when the lawsuits come out even more. Get ready Hoboken, you're in for quite the ride. Prepare for utter embarrassment.
puzzledone September 05, 2012 at 03:11 PM
Franz, Nice of you to answer my question of "Would you care to point out why he is incorrect" with more bile, accusations, and a few threats, some of which appear worse than those which are the subject of multi-million dollar litigations. When you say quite the ride, would you say more embarassment than when 2 of our former mayors were sent to jail? How about when the governor basically called the Mayor's council opposition a bunch of screaming babies? What about when the FBI seemed to imply the same thing when they realized the council minority was stealing emails? Or when our parking director was stealing millions of quarters? Or when the school board used our money for their steak dinners? Or when we can't pave a street or buy a new bus because of minority petulance? Seriously, how much more embarassment can we get than we already get under the Old Guard?
CuriousGal September 05, 2012 at 03:18 PM
puzzledone- "seemed to imply"....can you equivocate anymore??? LMAO ;-)
Scott M. Siegel September 05, 2012 at 03:27 PM
I am no one's mouthpiece. Everyone who really knows me understands that I form my own opinions. I spoke to Dawn briefly at the spaghetti dinner for the first time in months. Don't worry Franz you can impugn me, I don't sue over belittling remarks. The fact is that when Dawn ran for Mayor I observed the same type of liars like Franz saying the the same false story. The outdoor cafes haven't gone away and the their days open will soon be expanded. Facts are facts Franz.
puzzledone September 05, 2012 at 03:41 PM
CG, I was referring to language in the FBI Ricciardi report about a deeply divided city government. Given that they have not come down with any final judgments on the other individuals, while I certainly inferred this, I cannot be certain that they implied it. I'll take that my statement was unclear, I will restate: What about when the FBI arrested a best friend of a city council minority member for stealing emails and relaying them to other political figures. Clearly you missed the forest for the tree on my comment, as usual, you pick one thing that you can comment on and ignore the rest.
puzzledone September 05, 2012 at 03:47 PM
BTW, about the use of the word equivocate, which is usually seen as a mode of a deception (and I don't believe my post is meant to decieve). Some might argue that a number of your comments, such as...I would post here for free...or...we don't have elections every november...or...subtract the number of preschoolers... Those would be equivocations.
FranzZimmer September 05, 2012 at 05:46 PM
From Hoboken resident, to a defendant in a multi million dollar lawsuit headed for further hearings to moving out of town in to his mom's basement. Would you trust Scott?
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