MegaMind PubQuiz finds a thread in Park City’s cultural fabric
Park City’s MegaMind PubQuiz co-founder Colleen McGinn has her own New Year’s resolution:he wants to help people learn new things.
To do this, she hosts sessions that are open to the public three nights a week.
The first one held at 7 p.m. every Tuesday at Flanagan’s on Main, 438 Main St. The second is at 6 p.m. every Wednesday at Park City Brewery, 2720 Rasmussen Road, Suite A1.
These two sessions cost $5 per team up to five members.
A few weeks ago, McGinn, who co-founded the MegaMind PubQuiz five years ago with Melia Denali, added a free apres ski Power Hour Trivia from 3:30-4:30 p.m. every Thursday at Legends Bar and Grill at Park City Mountain.
“This one’s cool because people can just ski in and have fun doing trivia,” McGinn said during an interview with The Park Record. “Once it starts warming up in the spring, we’ll move the event to the Umbrella Bar at Canyons.”
Each MegaMind PubQuiz session will feature prizes, and she is especially excited for the Power Hour prizes.
“We have Park City Mountain book bags, Helly Hansen hats and gift certificates to Starbucks,” she said.
In addition to these public sessions, McGinn hosts private MegaMind PubQuiz parties for corporations, birthdays and showers.
“We did one for the Utah Jazz and we did one for the Salt Lake Bees last fall,” she said. “We also did one for eBay as well.”
The genesis for the Park City Mountain sessions came during one of the Utah Jazz sessions.
“There was a woman there who asked if we could do one for a baby shower,” McGinn said. “And when I did the baby shower, one of the women who was there works for Park City Mountain, and said she was looking for a fun new apres activity. Trivia fit the bill.”
McGinn is grateful for the support Park City has shown MegaMind PubQuiz over the past five years.
“People genuinely love it, and I know it’s not me, it’s the trivia,” she said. “There is something cool and quirky about trivia, and the topics can cater to anyone’s interests and needs.”
McGinn enjoys keeping the trivia current.
“That way we can give people the opportunity to find out what’s going on in the world,” she said. “But it’s also fun for me as well because I look up facts and wrap them up in a bow to give to the public.”
The challenge lies in how McGinn words the questions and where to find the answers.
“You have to be very direct with your questions so people can’t come up with multiple answers that fit,” she said. “Also, we have to seek out multiple sources for those answers.”
McGinn said she never uses Wikipedia.
“I usually look at websites from National Geographic, History Channel, Discovery Channel and other credible sources,” she said. “And when I find an answer, I look at multiple sources to back that answer up.”
The process of coming up with topics and writing the questions takes most of McGinn’s prep time.
“I’ll think about a topic and start looking up facts about the topic,” she said. “After five years, you have to be creative because you don’t want to repeat the questions each week, let alone each session. Yes. Every time we do a PubQuiz, we have different questions. That has made my job more interesting.”
When it comes time to play the games, MegaMind PubQuiz has three rules, which McGinn counted down.
“Rule No. 3 is you have to put your phone in a bucket before we play,” McGinn said. “We don’t want people to cheat, and we want the participants to be present and in the moment. The PubQuiz is a great way to get people together. It’s hard to do that these days because everyone is glued to their phones.”
Rule No. 2 is not shouting out answers.
“The only time people will be allowed to do that is when they are asked to do so by the MegaMaestro, which is me,” McGinn said.
The most important rule is the PubQuiz Master is always right.
“If there is a question about any of the answers, I will back up my answers through my research,” McGinn said.
In addition, McGinn came up with some unwritten rules for herself.
“You do have to walk a delicate line politically, especially during this day and age,” she said. “I want MegaMind to be enjoyable for everyone. So I try to keep the questions across the board. I won’t put any opinion in the questions.”
For example, when the MegaMind PubQuiz was hosting sessions during the presidential elections last year, McGinn had to be careful how she worded questions that referred to the candidates.
“I didn’t want to come across as favoring one over the others,” she said. “I didn’t want to pit Democrat against Republican. It’s not the way I want to do this, because MegaMind has become such a fun piece of the Park City cultural fabric.”
MegaMind PubQuiz is held at 7 p.m. every Tuesday at Flanagan’s on Main, 438 Main St. and at 6 p.m. every Wednesday at Park City Brewery, 2720 Rasmussen Road, Suite A1. The cost to play is $5 for a team of five. A free apres Power Hour Trivia is held from 3:30-4:30 p.m. at Legends Bar and Grill at Park City Mountain. For information, visit http://www.facebook.com/megaMIND.pubQUIZ.
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