Who was Tomah named after? Who is the creator of the comic strip Gasoline Alley?
Those questions might be included in the new Tomah Area Trivia game sponsored by the Tomah Area Historical Society and Museum. The board game has been developed as a fundraiser to enable the Historical Society to build a new museum.
A double lot was purchased by the Historical Society on Dec. 29 for the new building, said Jim Weinzatl, TAHSM executive director. A new facility is needed due to space constrictions at the current site.
“We simply have outgrown our facility. We just don’t have room to display and take in any more items because even our storage space is taken up,” Weinzatl said. “We really need more room, and we need to have an area where we can change the displays efficiently.”
Weinzatl said the goal is to raise between $250,000 and $300,000 for the building. He said the museum has already received $100,000 in donations. He hopes the new building is completed by 2020.
Dave Colbert, marketing manager of Fox Publishing, is putting the game together with the help of Weinzatl. Colbert said the goal of creating the hometown trivia game is to raise money and awareness of the museum project.
“The new museum project really needs to access funds any way it can, and we felt that this would be a program that would give the fundraising effort a boost, a head start,” he said.
The idea for the Tomah Area Trivia originated with Colbert, who’s working with the museum to put the game together.
Colbert, who has been in the board game business for 38 years, got in touch with Weinzatl after he was contacted by the Waushara County Historical Society to put together a game for it to raise funds for a new roof. It found a trivia game made by Colbert years before and thought it would be a good idea for a fund raiser. Inspired by that idea, Colbert contacted Weinzatl with the thought to do the same thing in Tomah after learning that the museum was planning to build a new facility.
The game itself will be played just like Trivial Pursuit, Colbert said. A player rolls dice, moves accordingly and then answers a question relating to the colored space the player landed on. The only difference is some of the spaces will be filled with icons from sponsors and businesses. Trivia about those sponsors will be included in the deck of cards.
Initially 1,000 copies of the game will be printed and sold for $29.95, Colbert said.
“For a city of this size, an area of this size should (sell that many) in the first year,” he said. “It seems like it might be optimistic but ... there’s a lot of ways to market this.”
The game is a fun idea, Weinzatl said.
“One of our purposes of the historical society is education,” he said. “I believe that this is an educational tool that will inform the people, to give them a little bit of history and facts that they never knew about and make it fun.”
Weinzatl expects the game to be available by June 1. Those wishing to pre-order a copy can contact the Tomah Area Historical Society and Museum at 608-372-1880.
Any business wishing to be included in the game can contact Colbert at 608-567-4174.