The Big Spring Buzzfest

Eagles Host Third Annual Academic Spring Tournament



Edison’s own Quiz Bowl buzzer set. Buzzers like these are used to answer questions during Quiz Bowl games.

On March 4, the Edison High School Quiz Bowl club hosted its third annual Eagles Academic Spring Tournament (EAST), but this time players were in-person for the first time in club history. Eighteen teams from across the Northeast, some arriving from as far as Connecticut and Pennsylvania, competed in ten rounds of competitive academic trivia, divided into five preliminary and playoff matches respectively, to crown the victor of the tournament.

“To have a tournament for eighteen other schools, at our school, and to have it run smoothly and efficiently, for the most part—we’re really proud of that accomplishment,” said Quiz Bowl President Vinay Menon ‘23. Organizing the tournament, the third-ever hosted by the club, initially seemed like an impossibility. The club lacked an advisor and was on the verge of collapse at the beginning of the school year. Yet, with days of planning and a pinch of administrative luck with Principal Mr. Charles Ross, presidents Menon and Avinash Aravind ‘23 were able to secure classroom space and a weekly meeting time for the club, drawing in new interest from freshmen and sophomores, and renewed interest from existing members. Of these club members, 18 volunteered and were trained by the presidents to properly read and scorekeep for the upcoming tournament.

“An in-person tournament has been something we’ve been trying to do for two years now. It was impossible two years ago, just barely impossible a year ago, and possible now,” said Menon.

The tournament, running from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., opened with announcements in the auditorium and closed with remarks in the cafeteria, where final tournament standings were announced. East Brunswick’s A team placed first with an undefeated 10–0 record, while Princeton High School A and Middlesex County Academy tied for second with matching records of 7–3.

For Aravind, the successful tournament was the culmination of years of hard work and improvement.

“To see [the tournament] go completely smoothly, with very few hiccups . . . it was so nice to see all that hard work did pay off,” said Aravind.

Mixed in with standard Quiz Bowl procedure was a hint of distinct Eagle flair, most notably demonstrated in the closing ceremony. Throughout the day, teams were given the opportunity to read clues typed behind room assignment signs and embark on a “Fun Facts About Edison” scavenger hunt, for which the grand prize was a factbook about the history of Edison. In addition, traditional book prizes for high scorers included classic favorites like the New Jersey Driver Manual and a college application guide. The highly-coveted “neg prize,” given to the individual who buzzed and gave the most wrong answers during play, Krishna Meegada ‘23 of East Brunswick B, was a bag of college readiness materials. Finally, the honorary title “Beast of the EAST,” recognizing the top scorer in preliminary play, was given to player Ryan Smith ‘25 of Downingtown STEM A (PA).

The organization of Edison High’s first in-person tournament marks distinct progress for the club. No longer nameless in the greater Northeast Quiz Bowl community, EHS is now known as the school that has successfully hosted three large tournaments in consecutive years, drawing acclaim from participants across the Northeast.

“When we first hosted EAST in 2021, it was basically a way to get our name out there,” said Aravind. “At the time there were concerns in the community because no one knew anything about Edison. Some people were concerned that, ‘Oh, Edison hasn’t hosted a tournament before, and they’re a relatively unknown name,’ and they were scared that our [tournament] wouldn’t go so well.”

Three years later, those concerns no longer exist.

“Nowadays, we’ve had people saying, ‘EAST is one of the best tournaments’ of that year,” said Aravind. “People know Edison’s name now: we’ve been in the Quiz Bowl community for four years, we’ve been performing well for four years, we’ve run a tournament for three years. So to be able to put on an in-person tournament, and have people actually come to Edison High School . . . it puts us on the map, which is something we haven’t been before.”

“It’s a sight to see, really,” added Aravind.

Quiz Bowl meetings are held every Thursday after school in room 238. Interested members may also join the club’s Google Classroom page by entering code 5tosrvd or speak to presidents Aravind and Menon for more information.