With this year’s annual trivia contest starting on April 11 and running through the 13, WWSP 90 FM has been under a whirlwind of preparatory activities and looks forward to another successful year.
Just as the 45 rpm records did back in the day, this year’s trivia contest is bound to shake things up with nostalgia.
“I started to think about Hits on 45, and it just hit me. Trivia on 45,” said Jim Oliva, trivia coordinator. “45 records exploded the music industry. They were smaller, lightweight and cheaper to produce than 78 rpm records.”
Every year since 1979, Oliva has come up with the theme for the world’s largest trivia contest.
“The theme for every year develops from whatever is inspiring me that particular moment in time,” Oliva said. “I usually have dozens of ideas floating around in my head and have to narrow it down. My brain is constantly racing.”
For Oliva, preparation is a year-round task.
“I am always taking notes and thinking about questions all year long. Just last night I was working on a question for next year,” Oliva said.
Oliva develops questions from a wide variety of sources so they will be unique and original.
“John Eckendorf and I spend way too much money buying stuff,” Oliva said. “I buy movie packages, old DVD’s of programs, music, books and magazines.”
Oliva, along with the 90FM executive staff and many other volunteers, put in long hours preparing for the event.
“We have a great executive staff this year made up of motivated individuals working together, and that has streamlined the planning,” said Daniel Waterman, 90 FM station manager.
The station has worked diligently with other student organizations to promote this year’s contest.
“Centertainment and PRSSA have done a really awesome job promoting the event, and we hope to see a good turnout,” Waterman said.
The station is hoping to see a surge in student participation this year.
“It is not about winning the contest, or how many questions you get right or beating anyone, it is about having fun,” Oliva said. “I really encourage students to participate. Get together with a group of friends, play out of your dorm or house, and just have a good time.”
Oliva said that trivia teams have a unique bond. While it is easy to lose contact with old high school friends, he will never lose his trivia friends.
“This is my fourth year participating in the contest, and it is a great opportunity to get back together with old friends and just have fun,” said junior biology major Brock McCain.
The annual Trivia Kick-off Parade begins Friday at 4 p.m. in Lot Q at Fourth Avenue and Illinois Avenue. It continues on Maria Drive, Isadore and Portage Streets to College Avenue, Reserve, High and Fremont Streets to Sims Avenue, ending at P.J. Jacobs Junior High School.
The contest will run for 54 hours straight, from 6 p.m. on Friday, April 11 to 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, April 13.
“As I say every year, it is that time of year. We are coming out of a long and hard winter, and it’s time to gather around the radio and play Trivia, Fast Eddy,” Oliva said.