by John Harper
October 2, 2020
Oct. 8, 15, 22, 29
Greg Smrdel wears many hats: radio host, stand-up comedian, magazine editor and author.
He’s also a skilled quizmaster.
Every Thursday, Smrdel, who lives in Manteo, hosts a free trivia night at Mulligan’s Grille in Historic Cottage Row in Nags Head.
“The standup experience makes it a little different,” says Smrdel, who gained 10 years of experience as a trivia host while living in Cleveland, Ohio. “It’s not just questions and answers.”
He and his wife, Char, moved to the Outer Banks in March, quarantining for two weeks upon arrival.
The weekly 90-minute games go six rounds (18 questions) and are open to solo players or teams. Subjects include music, local history, sports, TV, spelling, geography and movies. Prizes include gift certificates from Mulligan’s.
“I want to keep it fun,” says Smrdel. “It’s a fast-paced game.”
One tip: Brush up on your knowledge of “The Andy Griffith Show.” Smrdel has written two books on the classic TV program.
- Where: Mulligan’s Grille, 4005 S. Croatan Hwy., milepost 13, Nags Head
- When: 6 p.m.
- Cost: No cover
- Info: 252-480-2000, Positively Outer Banks on Facebook
Oct. 16-17, 30
In 1992, singer-songwriter Bryan Campbell left his home in Tabb, Virginia, and headed to the musicians’ promised land: Nashville, Tennessee.
He spent 26 years in Music City before moving to the Outer Banks with his wife Lea Anne in 2018 to be closer to their families in Hampton Roads.
Though he didn’t quite hit the big time in Nashville, the singer-songwriter found steady work, both solo and in bands (originals and covers). He played many of the town’s popular venues, including the legendary Bluebird Cafe.
And he wrote songs, the lifeblood of Music City. In 2004, the award-winning country duo Montgomery Gentry recorded one of his originals – “It’s All Good” – which appeared on their platinum-selling album “You Do Your Thing.”
Though “Good” wasn’t released as a single, Campbell’s writing credit earns him royalties every month. (Nashville songwriters call it “mailbox money.”)
“I loved every minute of it,” says Campbell of his time in music’s land of hopes and dreams.
These days, the Southern Shores-based singer-songwriter, who’s a special education teacher by day, is one of the busiest performers on the local scene. He plays three no-cover gigs this month at Poor Richard’s Sandwich Shop in Manteo and Village Table and Tavern in Duck.
Armed with a Vintage Statesboro acoustic guitar, which produces what Campbell calls a “rich, deep and warm sound,” he puts his lived-in voice and personal stamp on a wide range of material.
“A good song is a good song,” Campbell says. “It doesn’t matter the genre.”
He mixes originals with tunes by, among others, Chris Stapleton, Dave Matthews, Prince, Johnny Cash, Jason Isbell, Neil Young, The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, James Brown, Rick James, Hank Williams and the Allman Brothers Band.
“People like to hear what they know,” says Campbell. “I’m there for them.”
- When and where: 5:30 p.m. Oct. 16 and 30, Village Table and Tavern, 1314 Duck Road, Duck; and 6 p.m. Oct. 17, Poor Richard’s Sandwich Shop, 305 Queen Elizabeth Ave., Manteo waterfront
- Cost: No cover
- Info: 252-715-1414, Village Table and Tavern on Facebook; 252-473-3333, Poor Richard’s Sandwich Shop on Facebook
OBX Halloween International Film Festival
It’s time again to get your scream on.
But for the fifth edition of the festival, it will be in the privacy of your home.
The three-day event, which started Oct. 1, will go virtual, streaming online (eventlive.com). In past years, it’s been held at KDH Movies 10 in Kill Devil Hills.
Showcasing feature-length and short horror and Halloween-themed films, the scare-fest’s main attractions include “Cult of Nightmares,” “Mass Hysteria” and “They Live Inside Us.”
Several flicks made in North Carolina will be screened.
For a full schedule, go to: Halloweeninternationalfilmfestival.com.
- When: 5 p.m Oct. 2, 3 p.m. Oct. 3
- Where: Online (eventlive.com)
- Cost: $10-$50
- Info: OBX Entertainment.com
John Harper has been covering the local entertainment scene for The Coast and Virginian-Pilot since 1994. He’s also written hundreds of stories on subjects ranging from history to sports and food. Harper is longtime radio broadcaster and program director on the Outer Banks and can be heard from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday on the local Triple A outlet WVOD-99.1-The Sound. He’s the host of the popular Saturday morning flashback feature “10 at 10” and is also an award-winning wedding D.J.