February 6th, 2017

Outlander Pub Trivia

Many bars and restaurants host weekly trivia nights—chances are you have a friend or family member who frequents a local bar on a weekday night for just that reason. Have you ever wondered how trivia nights originated?

Pub trivia, as it is most commonly called, first appeared in Great Britain sometime in the 1970s. There are a few theories on the origin of the pub quiz.
Local pubs were (and still are) where the community came together; a place for conversation with neighbors, where ideas, politics, and opinions are shared and discussed. Pubs are also where people come together to relax.

In the 1970s, many would visit the pub to watch their favorite weekly shows. Quiz shows were among the most popular; trivia has often been a staple of British culture, so trivia shows would always draw a crowd. Pub patrons would play along with the show and yell out answers. After the show, people would think of their own trivia questions and try to stump their friends.
Eventually, bartenders saw how popular the game was and decided to profit from it, creating their own “live trivia” events.

According to author Marcus Berkmann, the creation of Trivial Pursuit is the reason quiz nights spread so rapidly throughout the country. Created in 1979, the game boasted 6,000 questions, which patrons would use to entertain themselves at the pub. By 1990, most pubs had a weekly quiz night as opposed to five years earlier.

Cecil County Public Library is starting their own versions of the pub quiz—quiz nights dedicated to popular book series. On February 15th, CCPL will host a trivia night at Minihane’s in downtown Elkton based on the popular “Outlander” series by Diana Gabaldon and the Starz television adaptation. If you’ve read all the books, or watched the show, come join us and meet new friends while supporting local businesses! The event is free, but registration is required. Please call the Elkton library at 410-996-5600 extension 481 to sign up, or register online.


Tags: , , , ,


July 18th, 2016

Gotta Catch ‘Em All

PidgeyAt this point you’ve probably seen stories about the Pokémon Go craze sweeping the world.  There have been headlines about it being the most popular app game in the country and more popular than Twitter.  So what is it?  Pokémon Go is the latest installment in a game franchise with a 20-year history.  The players, known as trainers, walk around outside with a mobile device that displays a map of their surroundings.  When small creatures called Pokémon appear on the screen, players attempt to capture them by throwing Poké balls at them.  This step can actually be harder than it looks.  Trust me.  Players gather more balls and other items by visiting places called Pokéstops and interacting with the spot on their device.  Most of our libraries are Pokéstops.  Once the players capture Pokémon they can grow them by feeding them or evolve them into stronger versions.  Players can also use the Pokémon to virtually capture places called gyms that have some tie to the real world.  Our Cecilton Branch is a gym.  Those are the basics but there’s a lot more to the game.  If you want to learn more, there have been some good articles about the game online or you could ask a player.  I know I’ve explained the game to a large number of people in the last week.

pigeondriveSo you might be wondering, how does this all tie back to libraries?  It’s a good question that has multiple answers.  Starting with the obvious physical ones, we have outlets people can charge their devices since the game will quickly drain your battery.  We also have an excellent Wi-Fi system while so you can play without using your phone data plan.  After the last week, it’s also worth mentioning since you can reach the stops and gyms at our locations from inside the building you can play while in the air conditioning.  I’m not sure who was hotter yesterday me or my Flareon.  Going a bit further there is also the social aspect of the game.  A good portion of the players like to talk to each other about the game; sharing their experiences, where things are, good places to go to, things like that.  Libraries are places for exploration and information doesn’t always have to come from our staff.  It can also be between patrons.  There’s also a growing creative community that enjoy posing the Pokémon in the world for pictures.  Our more creative staff members figured out that Pidgey shouldn’t drive the bus.

Now some advice for fellow trainers from a person that played Niantic’s previous game Ingress for over two years (Niantic is the company that programmed Pokémon Go).  In the summer bring water and sunscreen with you since it’s very easy to get distracted and stay outside in the sun too long.  Bug spray also isn’t a bad idea if you are going to play at dusk.  Pay attention to your surroundings; look up from your phone often, watch for traffic, watch for street signs and parking meters since they hurt when you walk into them, watch for other people walking and move out of the way if you are going to be stopped for a while, and don’t walk into dark areas at night.  Playing with other people is always a good idea, especially at night, since you can look out for each other.  It’s also more fun to play with a group and makes it easier to hunt down that Rare who’s three footsteps away.  Be respectful of posted hours since even public places like parks can close at night.  Don’t trespass and respect private property.  Catching anything, even something really cool, isn’t worth having the cops called on you or worse.  Be friendly to other players and people who ask about the game.  You might even be able to recruit them to your team.  Most of all have fun.  See you out there.

Where’s your favorite place to play?


Tags: , , , , ,