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Making a game of knowledge

'Liberal Artists' and 'Team Subway' win top prizes

'Liberal Artists' and 'Team Subway' win top prizes

February 25, 2007|by MARIE GILBERT

HAGERSTOWN - Dictionaries, game shows and the Internet became the best friends of four North Hagerstown High School classmates this month.

They studied European history, researched composers and inventors, and brushed up on their spelling.

When Saturday afternoon rolled around, they were ready to put their knowledge to the test.

Jessica Shuff, Lauren Zamora, Hannah Boward and Susan Kelly, known as the North High Mensas, were among the contestants who participated in The Herald-Mail Co.'s Team Trivia Bingo.

The event at Washington County Technical High School was a fundraiser for Newspapers in Education (NIE), a program that is a cooperative effort between The Herald-Mail Co. and local schools.

This is the third year for the competition, said event host Dave Elliott, the newspaper's human resources director.

Elliott, who was on "Wheel of Fortune," and co-host Bob Fleenor, a copy editor and five-time "Jeopardy!" champion, came up with the trivia questions that covered a wide range of topics - from cartoons to politics.

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"We work months in advance, bouncing questions off each other," Elliott said. "It's a lot of fun."

Elliott said most of the questions were of moderate difficulty.

"If we make them too easy, there's no challenge," he said. "If we make them too difficult, we could be here all day."

The lure of facts and figures attracted 32 teams with four players each to this year's event.

Each team paid $100 to enter the competition, Elliott said.

The money raised through Team Trivia Bingo helps provide newspapers and resource guides to teachers and students for use as part of classroom lessons, Elliott said.

More than 475 teachers use the NIE program, and collectively have requested more than 475,000 newspapers for students during the 2006-07 school year.

Two grand prizes were awarded at this year's competition. Taking honors for the most correct trivia answers was the team Liberal Artists. Members of Team Subway were the bingo champions. Each team won $400.

While the North High Mensas didn't place in the competition, team members still were happy that they participated.

"This was our third year, and though we never win, we still have a good time," Susan Kelly said. "And we always learn something new."

Prizes for Team Trivia Bingo were donated by area businesses.

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