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Great Midwest Trivia Contest goes forth in spite of pandemic

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It’s the most anticipated sleepless weekend in the Fox Cities.

It’s a full-on marathon in the pursuit of useless knowledge. It’s also a great tradition and organizers weren’t about to let a pandemic stand in the way.

Lawrence University’s Great Midwest Trivia Contest will return this weekend for its 56th edition — one that’ll require some modification for the sake of safety.

The student-run contest will stream on Twitch beginning at its usual start time: 37 seconds past 10 p.m. on Friday. It’ll continue until midnight Sunday. The action questions, a popular slice of the weekend, will continue in virtual format. 

Answers through the weekend will be received in a mix of phone calls and a virtual phone line on a Discord server, all facilitated by 11 student trivia masters scattered near and far. 

Much of the weekend will be recognizable, keeping to traditions that have carried forth since the contest was first broadcast on the campus radio station in 1966. Teams will engage in deep research to uncover answers to more than 300 rapid-fire and obscure questions. It’ll end with the Super Garuda, the impossible finale question that returns as the first question of the following year’s contest.

Covid-19 will bring some limitations.

“It’s very difficult to balance the needs of the contest with this year’s restrictions, and, in some cases, we have had to make changes to trivia that go against tradition,” said Grace Krueger, head master of this year’s contest. “Our main focus is making sure the contest happens this year and that it can be a positive experience for everyone.”

Teams can’t physically gather as they once would, whether on or off campus. The campus radio station is off limits. 

Trivia players should make a Twitch account if they want to participate in the live chat during the contest and a Discord account if they want to be connected with the trivia masters throughout the contest. No account is needed for players who just want to view the stream.

Those interested in playing or even just tagging along can click here for all the contest details.

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