Chilkat Valley News - Serving Haines and Klukwan, Alaska since 1966


Interrupted trivia game sparks ruckus at bar


The timing was apparently off for three Whitehorse, Y.T., residents who came looking for a party early Saturday night at a downtown bar.

According to eyewitnesses, the trio showed up around 8 p.m. at the Pioneer Bar, in the third round of the weekly trivia competition that usually runs until 9:15 p.m.

The visitors were boisterous and appeared drunk, and in a few minutes, rang the bell three times, effectively buying three rounds of drinks for each bar patron, each round costing $90. Bell-ringers typically win applause in the bar, but the local trivia league tends to be competitive – and quiet.

“Nobody cared. Nobody said anything. Nobody wanted the drinks in the first place. It was trivia night,” said trivia player Leigh Horner. Horner said she thanked the men for the rounds, “but they didn’t get the reaction they wanted. I felt something was going to happen.”

The players, who comprised most of the 15 or so customers in the bar at the time, tried diplomatically to quiet down the trio, but when that didn’t work, remarks started flying.

When one of the visitors started blurting out answers to the questions asked by the game’s announcer, player Jeff Alvine “said something smart-alec” to them, Alvine said in an interview.

Alvine this week was apologetic. “It didn’t help matters. It was unnecessary. It was all unnecessary.”

“That just set them off,” said trivia player Diane Sly, who described the visitors as very large and very intoxicated. One of the visitors crossed the bar and approached Alvine and grabbed him by the collar and pushed him.

Alvine’s teammates got between him and the Canadians until borough police officers Jason Rettinger and Josh Dryden arrived and calmed the men down. Rettinger said he ran background checks on the men and sent them home.

Trivia player Ty Esposito said she appreciated that the trio had reportedly spent upwards of $1,000 around town. “Those guys can come back anytime, they just can’t be that obnoxious. They couldn’t get with the group.”

The CVN was unable to reach the visitors for comment. Police confirmed that the men were from Whitehorse but declined to provide their names.