What National Day on January 4th celebrates those who accumulate and hoard tidbits of useless trivia? National Trivia Day, of course!
Each year, the holiday recognizes the collectors of unconnected, irrelevant data, facts, history, and quotes in the recesses of their brains. They are the ones who usually proffer these sometimes astounding bits of history when friends and family least expect it.
The word trivia is plural for the word trivium.
In ancient times, the term “trivia” was appropriated to mean something very new.
Nostalgic college students in the 1960s, along with others, began to informally trade questions and answers about the popular culture of their youth. After writing trivia columns, Columbia University students Ed Goodgold and Dan Carlinsky created the earliest inter-collegiate quiz bowls that tested culturally (and emotionally) significant, yet virtually useless information, which they dubbed trivia contests. Trivia (Dell, 1966) was the first book treating trivia in the revolutionary new sense, authored by Ed Goodgold and Dan Carlinsky. This book achieved a ranking on the New York Times bestseller list.
- Over time, the word “trivia” has come to refer to obscure and arcane bits of dry knowledge as well as nostalgic remembrances of pop culture.
- In North America, the game Trivial Pursuit peaked in 1984, when consumers bought over 20 million games.
- Steven Point, Wisconsin, holds the largest current trivia contest at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point’s college radio station WWSP 89.9 FM. During the April 2013 event, the university hosted the 44th annual contest. Typically, 400 teams participate, ranging from 1 to 150 players. The competition, which is open to anyone, spans 54 hours over a weekend with eight questions each hour.
- The first season of the popular television trivia show Jeopardy! premiered on March 30, 1964.
HOW TO OBSERVED #NationalTriviaDay
Are you into trivia? Challenge someone to a trivia contest. Attend a trivia night or host one at home. Show off your trivia savvy. While you’re at it find out how much you know about the National Days. See if you can answer these questions. Some of them, we aren’t even sure of the answers.
- How many days are listed on National Day Calendar?
- Is there a food holiday on every day of the year?
- How many chocolate holidays are there?
- We love our pets. Do you know how many pet holidays there are?
- What’s the oldest National Day on the calendar?
- How many technology days are on the calendar?
Check out the National Day Calendar® Trivia page and see if you can answer all the questions correctly. Use #NationalTriviaDay to share on social media.
Educators, visit the National Day Calendar® Classroom for ways to use trivia in the classroom and resources.
NATIONAL TRIVIA DAY HISTORY
Robert L Birch of Puns Corps. founded National Trivia Day. The first celebration took place as early as 1980, a year before the popular board game, Trivial Pursuit, debuted.