When I think of a night at Wellman’s Pub and Rooftop in West Glen a test of wits doesn’t really come to mind. In a very short time this high-ceilinged offshoot to Wellman’s Ingersoll has become a West Des Moines nightlife institution. Around midnight on a Friday or Saturday the place is a madhouse of activity with an upbeat pop soundtrack drowning out all but the loudest conversation; leave your indoor voice at home.
So when I heard that the guys at Select Entertainment were going to host a trivia night I was pretty intrigued. How would a place renowned for its clubby atmosphere pull off trivia? Pretty well in fact.
The rules are the same as at Champp’s : five rounds, with two rounds of general knowledge, 2 audio rounds and 1 picture round. But what distinguishes Wellman’s from Champp’s is the atmosphere. At Champp’s, located in Jordan Creek Mall, its easy to find a seat and there are usually returning teams that duke it out from week to week.
Wellman’s on the other hand usually has a wait and the teams are often people who had no idea a trivia game would break out. So the competition can really vary each week. Sometimes there will be a 14 person table that can use collective brain power to dominate and other times there groups are smaller and less interested. And yes, usually there are teams illegally using their cell phones to Google or Shazam answers. If we lived in a different world this would be grounds for challenging someone to a duel.
Even on a Wednesday Wellman’s is still a hot bed of activity between rounds, with 25 HD screens and 4 gigantic screens playing basketball, baseball and hockey games. There are plenty of tables that barely pay attention to the DJ and the wait staff is constantly at the table getting drink refills and clearing plates. All the activity can make it hard to hear during the audio round but the DJ is usually kind enough to replay the clip a couple times. The prizes on offer are similar to Champp’s as well: free drinks and food and $50 cash for the grand prize winner.
So really it’s a no brainer to use your brain at 8pm on Wednesdays at Wellman’s. A good atmosphere, excellent food and a chance to pickup $50 just for answering a few questions with friends. It’s a great experience just to see the versatility of this West Glen anchor.