MOUNT AIRY — High school graduation is not always the end of the line for Quiz Bowl competitors.
Quiz Bowl, a competition that pits teams of students from different schools against one another in a battle of knowledge and information, is scheduled for Saturday at 9 a.m. at the Andy Griffith Playhouse in Mount Airy. The public is invited to attend the event, which will include several schools from this area.
Teams for the 2019 competition are: Alleghany High School, 2018 champions East Surry High School, Forbush High School, Millennium Charter Academy, Mount Airy High School, North Surry High School, South Stokes High School, Stokes Early College School and Yadkin Early College School.
Several teacher sponsors of the competing schools are former Quiz Bowl competitors. Terry Collins sponsors the East Surry High School team. Amanda Smith sponsors the North Surry High School team. James Chappell sponsors the Millennium Charter Academy team. Wayne Matthews sponsored a team for years and then transitioned to becoming one of the three judges for the competition. Both regional library employee Tyler Wilmoth and moderator Homer Dearmin are also Quiz Bowl alumni.
“Last year, when I was sitting in exactly the same chair I was sitting in 14 years ago as a student, in the exact same competition, a wave of nostalgia went over me,” said James Baldwin, who sponsored Millennium Charter Academy’s first Quiz Bowl team in 2018. “I started to get a little emotional.”
Chappell said that when he started as a freshman at Starmount in 2004, he played football, wrested, played tennis, and didn’t care about much else.
“I didn’t make good grades or care about the intellectual side of life,” he said. Chappell played chess with a friend, joined the chess club, and was encouraged to try Quiz Bowl. He was told it was a trivia contest and thought it could be another activity he would do, something to keep him from getting bored after school. Later that year, he competed in his first Quiz Bowl at the Andy Griffith Playhouse.
“I had never thought of intelligence as a competitive activity,”said Chappell. “But it was enjoyable, and there was a lot of excitement in the competition. That blossomed into the idea that intelligence, studying and learning more, could be fun.”
At college, Chappell got involved with Brain Bowl thinking if it was anything like Quiz Bowl, he would like it.
Fast forward to 2018 and Chappell, along with the rest of Millennium’s faculty, got an email from his principal requesting a teacher to sponsor a team for the school.
“I will do this,” Chappell said. He started the team (it was the first year the school had a senior class) and with only a month to practice, placed fourth out of nine.
“I thought that was pretty respectable,” he said.
This year, after practicing all year, he’s hoping his team does even better.
In the event of inclement weather, and there is no school on March 15, Quiz Bowl will be rescheduled.
Pictured here is the 2018 East Surry Quiz Bowl team with their trophy: front, from left, John Wingo, Ryan Wagoner; back, from left, Coach Terry Collins, Bailey Taylor and Jacob Hart. Collins is one of several teacher sponsors who competed in Quiz Bowl in high school.
Reach Bill Colvard at 336-415-4699.