Nerd Out at Nerd Nite
Nerd, nite, and Denton are three words that fit really well together. Nerd Nite Denton is an event has been referred to as the drunk little brother to TED Talks, so we know the town is on board.
Nerd Nite started in Boston, MA in 2003 and was founded on the concept that drinking with friends and colleagues makes learning more fun. Now Nerd Nite is in over 90 cities all over the world, featuring presentations across all disciplines. The Denton chapter was started earlier this year, with events every month since April.
If you’ve attended these events religiously since the beginning, these are things you probably now know:
1) North Texas baseball has had two of the greatest hitters of all time.
2) There is a local filmmaker that creates footage of superheroes in Denton.
3) Pirates aren’t just in Disney movies - they exist in real life.
4) What minerals you can and can’t buy on Jupiter and whose law applies when a crime is committed on the International Space Station.
5) What can be learned about the biological system when one element is removed and things get a little weird.
As you can probably tell by now, the structure of Nerd Nite focuses on variety. There are always 3 guests. Anyone from teachers, lawyers, to other locals with cool jobs, or even just everyday folks who have nerdy obsessions. Each guest talks for 15-20 minutes on whatever their topic is. There’s always a bar so you can really commit to the drinking part of the night. No topic is off-limits because, as Eric puts it, “when you get down to it, it’s not something that has to be entertaining for hours. If someone is really passionate about something, they can make it interesting for 15-20 minutes and it’s going to work.”
Shaun added, “Everyone is kind of a nerd about something. That knowledge - once you start getting down to the brass tacks - it’s just interesting. I got involved because it’s not something that was in Denton. There’s great places to eat, drink, to hear music, and now that we’ve got a comedy scene that’s starting, there’s even more variety. With two universities though we have a lot of people that study a lot of wild stuff and this gives them a place to share it.”
You might be wondering now ‘how do I get involved?’. That’s a good question. First off all, like them on Facebook. Then, attend the events. We’ve got a list below of upcoming events - but you can know they have them every month (plus, they’ve got an extra special coming up on 9/17 with the Greater Denton Arts Council and The Bearded Monk). If that’s not enough for you, they’ve also got a scholarship fund you can help out with.
Nerd Nite Denton is raising money to award 3 scholarships to Denton County High School students. Each scholarship will consist of $250 to the student and $250 to an organization they are a member of. To apply, students have to submit an essay on a topic they consider themselves nerd level experts, a short essay about a group they are affiliated with, and a super short essay about themselves. To donate or for more information, you can reach out to the bosses themselves.
Do you consider yourself a nerd level expert? Think you could talk about a topic for 15-20 minutes and people wouldn’t fall asleep? If so, pitch the idea to Ali, Eric, or Shaun. Personally, I’m trying to figure out what I’d want to talk about. Hockey, maybe? Or the history of house shows? Or maybe penguins...I think I know a lot about penguins. What do y’all think?
Nerd Nite 5: A Flask Full of Nerdy on 8/23 at The Bearded Monk
Speakers: Kyle Taylor - How I Started my Startup; Gabriel Killian - Creating a Collaborative Community and other “C” Words; Shaun Treat - A History of Hooch in Denton County
An Un Evening without Kevin Smith on 9/17 at 9:30 PM at The Bearded Monk
Featuring a Costume Contest, Comic Related Speakers and Trivia Contests
Nerd Nite 6 on 9/20 at The Bearded Monk
Speakers: Carlos Morales - Waco NPR; Dallas Guill - Oaktopia; Amber Briggle - Having a Transgender Child