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Masters of Trivia: Event nets $4.5K for Relay

Trivia Night teams raised $4,500 for Relay for Life.

A team from the Curry Coastal Pilot once again proved that it knows a little bit about everything — which proved good enough to win the  annual Relay for Life Trivia Challenge.

The Pilot team has squashed other competitors two of three years the event has taken place. Last year a team of surfers and gardeners, calling itself Surf and Turf, won the challenge while the Pilot came in fourth among 14 teams. 


This year, the competition was stiffer as there were a total of 19 teams that competed at Howonquet Hall on the Smith River Rancheria. And because of that higher participation, the money raised for the American Cancer Society increased as well.

At the Saturday event, it was announced that $4,350 was raised. But on Monday, Rhonda Gardenheir, Relay for Life sponsorship chairwoman, said the figure has increased to nearly 4,500 and money was still coming in.

“This is $1,100 more than last year,” Gardenheir said. Last year’s event raised $3,288.

Of the money raised, $1,273 came from raffle ticket sales; the silent auction garnered $788; the 50/50 raffle added $323 to the pot; and team registration amounted to $2,000. It cost $100 to register a team and 20 teams registered. One team didn’t show.

During the challenge, teams of six to eight members were given five minutes, more if requested, to answer as many trivia questions correctly on several separate topics, as possible. 

At the end of the time, scores were tallied and recorded on a score sheet for everyone to see. Topic categories included identifying items in pictures, trivia about locations in Oregon, matching states with their capitals and identifying landmarks within those states, brain teasers, nostalgia and more.

Ron Wheeler, who has been chief organizer of the event, spent four months researching and compiling the trivia for the challenge.

As the evening began, the Pilot team was not so successful. However, once the team developed a strategy, the team did much better and came in first place during the a nostalgia category.

In years past, Wheeler has had a music category; however, last year he received many groans from team members by playing a lot of bad country songs. This year, he presented a nostalgia category. He played a theme song from a TV show and team members had to identify the show, and then match the show to pictures of the cast. The Pilot team came up on top with a perfect score in this category.

Once in the lead, the Pilot team stayed on top, even though the group bombed in the brain teaser category. Apparently no one else did well either.

Tying for second place were teams from Fred Meyer and Barron’s Home Furnishings, and coming in third was the Curry Good Sam Dream Team.

Before the trivia match began, team members were treated to a spaghetti, garlic bread and salad dinner.

At each table was a handmade pin made by Carol and Michael Humphreys. The pins were made while Carol was undergoing cancer treatment, Gardenheir said. A cancer survivor on each team was allowed to keep the pin, or it could be purchased.

Trivia Night was the first major fundraiser for the 2013 Relay for Life, which will culminate in an all-night relay at the Brookings-Harbor High School track on July 13 and 14. So far 12 teams — 53 total participants — have signed up for the event, Gardenheir said.  Teams may still be organized by visiting http://www.relayforlife.org or by calling Bonnie Ell at 541-813-1459 or sending an email to This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

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