Nerd Nite Fargo


Update: March Nerd Nite will be livestream only. #fuckyoucoronavirus

Hey there my nerds,

Welp, with the updated guidance from the CDC and the POTUS (no gatherings of groups >10 people), we’ve now decided that March Nerd Nite will be totally virtual.  Practice your self quarantine and stream us live from our Facebook Page; Science Evolved is still coming in to educate us on this scourge of a virus, because just like GI Joe taught us, knowing is half the battle 🙂  Remember that you can submit your questions via, event code #FargoNerdNite (there is no sign up or anything required- just enter the event code and submit your questions easy peasy).

We’ve also rescheduled our other two speakers to later in the year, so we can focus on what everyone’s talking about currently- thanks heaps to Ben and Jon for being so flexible with their time.

Depending on how the situation develops, future events may be delayed, cancelled, or totally virtual as well- stay with us on social media or via our email list for updates, and please continue to wash your hands, practice social distancing, and share dank memes to fight this garbage off.  AND if you are so inclined, please consider buying some giftcards from the Gastropub to help support our awesome venue while they tough out this quarantine- call them up at (701) 282-4168 to purchase and they will mail the gift cards out to you.

So pour yourself a drink from the comfort of your couch, and tune in tomorrow, March 18th, 7PM to get all the real lowdown- minus the hype- on COVID-19 with our speaker Manpreet Bains’ talk ‘Is the Coronavirus Going to Kill us All?’ (Side note- that is a pretty hype-y title.  Wtf Matt LOL.).

Stay healthy, nerds.  Hopefully we won’t see you soon.

🙂 T

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March Nerd Nite: Thank God for Live Streaming

Greetings nerds!  I hope you are all weathering this storm well.  Let me get right to the point: as of right now, March Nerd Nite is going forward as planned. We struggled quite a bit with whether or not to cancel this show, but we refuse to give into hysteria,  and based on the most recent guidelines of the CDC, we believe that with a little thoughtfulness, we can carry on our nerdery without significant risk to our audience, our venue, or ourselves.  Not to mention that in the wake of panic currently sweeping the medias, we believe it is important to fight fear with facts, and as one of our speakers has incredibly relevant facts to share, we shall align with the old adage that the show must go on.

As always, you are free (and for this month, I daresay you are encouraged) to stay home and enjoy NN from the comfort of your toilet paper fort by streaming our show via Facebook Live (@nerdnitefargo).  BUT considering that the risk level for ND is low right now, you are also welcome to join us at the GP as usual.   Allow me to remind you to please stay the fuck home if:

  • You are sick.
  • Have recently been in contact with someone who is sick.
  • Have recently traveled to an area of high infection rate (way to go Idaho, Alaska, and Alabama- crushing it).
  • Are yourself extra vulnerable to illness, or have frequent contact with someone who is.

AND since we anticipate that many of you will choose to stay home, for the first time in a long time, you can submit questions to our presenters via, event code #FargoNerdNite.  With that said, please allow me to present the details for this month’s talks!

Is the Coronavirus going to kill us all?  Over the past few weeks, the news media has been dominated by the scary Coronavirus out of China. People have become so petrified of this disease, they’ve even stopped drinking Corona beer and cut back on Chinese food. So, what is the coronavirus and is it dangerous? This talk will discuss details of the virus and delve into how fearful we should really be of this disease.

Manpreet Bains is an all-around science enthusiast who graduated with a Ph.D. in Molecular Pathogenesis a few years ago. After graduate school, he started working for a local biotech company, which he left a few months ago to start working on a science blog ( He’s the lucky father to a one-year old baby girl and spends his free time binging Netflix, gaming, and spending time with family.

Going Undercover – A Peek Behind the Curtain of US Intelligence Agencies.  You are about to get a briefing on the history of US Intelligence: its origins, victories, tragedies, and how it’s changed throughout the years. We will also take a look at some bad ass spies that changed the world, even though you never heard their names.

Ben Jagim earned a Bachelor’s from UND and a Master’s in International Affairs from Texas A&M with a concentration in Intelligence as a Tool of Statecraft. He operates his own insurance agency and enjoys community projects. His nerd focus includes A Song of Ice and Fire, superhero movies, Star Trek: TNG, and history.   Short version: he drinks and he knows things.

…and we may even have one more, but he’s really procrastinating sending me his talk details, so unfortunately I can’t tell you anything more about him. 🙂  The last things I’ll share are that there will still be beer, there will still be learning, and there will still be fun.  Unless things take a turn (and if they do, we’ll keep you updated), we’ll be at Fargo Billiards and Gastropub this Wednesday, March 18th, 7PM (doors at 6:30) should you choose to join us, otherwise we’ll be cheersing you from the other side of the internet.  Don’t forget to Slido us your questions, and stay awesome, friends.

🙂 T

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Celebrate your love…for knowledge. February Nerd Nite!

Happy Saturday, nerds.  It’s been a hot minute since the last FNN and we sure do miss the hell out of you all, so I am thrilled that we finally get to kick off our 2020 season!  Check out our bomb line up for this month:

Tentacular: the Origins of Hentai.  Explore the true gift to America that was given to us because of a truly gruesome crime. See how this art form made it into the public sphere in the west, and left us wanting more!

Though it is known that Ari Harveland is a local sex nerd, it is less known that she has been a casual history nerd ever since she presented on Elizabeth the 1st of England in elementary school. Part time crazy cat lady, part time nerd, Ari is back again!

HIVstory: A look back through the history of HIV across the world, in the US and in ND.  A year-to-year history of the good, the bad and what is to come in the future.

Brenton Nesemeier grew up in Fargo and went to NDSU where he received his MS degree in Microbiology. He has been with the ND Dept of Health for 3 years, where he gets to talk sex, vaccine preventable disease (get your shots people), and food borne outbreaks to the public on a daily basis.

…plus trivia, booze, prizes, and other general nerdery, all happening on Wednesday February 19th, 7PM, at Fargo Billiards and Gastropub.  Free and open to the public, as long as you’re 21, because there are laws about drunk children here.  Be there and be square.

🙂 T

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Gambler Magic: FNN #50


Happy November, Nerds. Our next show marks the 50th official Fargo Nerd Nite- that’s over a hundred talks, hundreds of beers, dozens of speakers, several botched trivia games, and a couple of very tired bosses. 🙂 I’d like to tell you that we have special plans to celebrate this anniversary, but let’s be real- we’re underachievers and we have a format that works, so let’s stick with it.  Topics this month:

The Gambler 500: The most badass off-road rally that you have probably never heard of. Giving tossed aside and sometimes abandoned vehicles a new life and a chance to become legendary! Intentionally vague, always awesome! ABG!

Dusty O Schultz was born and raised right here in Fargo, and graduated from NDSCS with a degree in Diesel Technology in 2002. Hobbies include using an axe to split wood the old fashioned way, fixing anything that does not contain a computer, and constantly looking for another classic car to buy.  When not doing any of that stuff Dusty maintains his status as the self-proclaimed Roller coaster champion of the world, for never walking past a roller coaster without riding it first.

Magizoology for Muggles.  Accio Harry Potter fans! Did you know that magic is all around us, even in the muggle world? You just have to look in the right places! There are shape-shifter boggarts in the ocean, humans have their own magical tears like phoenixes, and there are even fungi that can use the mind controlling imperius curse. Come and see what else is inside the magical briefcase of the muggle world!

Kimberly Booth is an Assistant Professor of Practice in the Department of Biological Sciences at NDSU. She teaches biology for non-science majors, in which she focuses on two major goals: 1) providing a scientific lens by which to evaluate societal issues and 2) fostering curious and scientifically literate citizens. Her research interests include how students make decisions about socio-scientific issues, such as vaccination.

PLUS test your Nerd Mettle with some NN trivia, maybe have some cake, definitely have a beer…you know this story.  AND since we take December off, this will be our last Nerd Nite of 2019 until we return in 2020, so you better get your fix now.  See y’all Wednesday November 20th, 7PM, Fargo Billiards and Gastropub.  Be there and be square.

🙂 T

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Happy Halloween, MFers! October Nerd Nite.

What’s up, Nerds?  I hope your Halloween costumes are coming along nicely.  I haven’t even started on mine yet- my coworkers and I are all going to dress up like VSCO girls, so step one…find out what the fuck a VSCO girl is.  Anyway, first things first: DEETS FOR OCTOBER NERD NITE ARE HERE!!

The Red Goo that Fuels You. In celebration of All Hallows’ Eve, this talk will discuss the importance of blood; the amazing 5 liters of fluid that powers you. This hemoglobin carrying liquid does more than just carry oxygen and nutrients. We’ll discuss the human history of blood, cool facts about it, gain a better understanding of why blood is important and learn about its purpose in our daily lives.

Manpreet Bains graduated with a Ph.D. in Molecular Pathogenesis where his research focused on the interactions of the neuropeptide, Vasoactive Intestinal Peptide, and the body. His research involved understanding how VIP impacted eosinophils and T-cells in the immune system, altered metabolism, and modified the microbiome. Likes include big words, Qdoba lunches, and blogging nerdy science articles on FB @SciencEvolved.

DON’T PANIC. Hitchhiker’s Guide to Cosmic Horrors.  Dive with us into the possibility of the universe suddenly ceasing to exist, and how it could already be failing. A presentation about cosmic horror and the danger of the infinitely massive to quantumly small.

Jade Harveland is returning after uncovering Atlantis and has talked on everything from sex toys to comics. He’s now here to terrify us with how the world could end.

Definitely Ancient and Totally Mysterious: an Intro to Tarot Cards.

Dani Harveland has been a practicing pagan for over a decade, and she is definitely using this presentation as an excuse to buy more Tarot decks because enough is never enough. (Just don’t tell her partner ;). If you can convince her to part with one of her precious babies you could even win your very own themed Tarot complete with custom pouch.

Plus free candy, beer that I wish was free, and maybe crazy people in costumes.  Idk.  It’s Halloween.  Let’s get weird.  See your spooky asses on Wednesday October 16th, 7PM (doors at 6:30), Fargo Billiards and Gastropub. 

🙂 T

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Atlantian Fire Tips: Sept 2019

Greetings from Chicago, Nerds!  It is the time of year when NN bosses from all over the country gather in a chosen city to share tips, fun stories, and ideas about how to make NN the best it can be.  Also they watch me get brick-faced and marvel at the liver powers of North Dakotans. 🙂 ANYWAY, topics for September Nerd Nite are here!

Five Tips on Supporting LGBTQ+ Youth. Learn how to best support the LGBTQ+ youth you come across in your life without sprinkling rainbow glitter everywhere you go (although glitter will be available upon request). Included topics are pronouns, expressing oneself, coming out, the alphabet of LGBTQIIAA plus, and dealing with mean people.

Adrienne MacDonald (they/them) is an activist for the LGBTQ+ community. Their most important role as an activist is to facilitate Kaleidoscope, the LGBTQ+ youth support group at The Pride Collective and Community Center.  Adrienne has a B.S. degree from NDSU in Psychology, and attends graduate school at MSUM, writing their thesis on LGBTQ+ youth, adult support, and mental health. Their work with at-risk youth won’t stop any time soon.

I get paid to light fires. What is a prescribed fire?  Have you ever heard of the term “good fire”? How can there be such a thing? Come learn the benefits of using fire as an ecological/management tool in the northern tall-grass prairie. Fire is a natural process in this ecosystem and many species require it for their survival. Learn the anatomy of a prescribed fire and how this practice can be applied safely in natural areas.

Matt Mecklenburg has been in working in the natural resources field for 20 years, the last 15 of which have been with The Nature Conservancy (TNC). He has been involved with prescribed fire during that entire time, the last 11 serving as a burn boss for TNC. He holds a B.S. in Natural resources from NDSU and an A.A.S. in Natural Resources from Central Lakes College. He enjoys spending time with his wife Candace and silver Labrador retriever Otus. He also enjoys hunting, fishing, hiking and paddling.

The Lost City of Atlantis.  Let’s dive into a mystery as old history itself, in time before the first of the ancient wonders of the world. A mysterious lost land where we must ask ourselves what is even possible as we pull back the curtains on our own history in search for answers. Answers to where the lost city of Atlantis is, what happened to it, its people, and if it even existed in the first place.

Jade Harveland is four time speaking veteran of Fargo Nerd Nite.  When he’s not nerding with FNN, he works as a sex educator and trainer at Enchantasy’s intimate boutique.  His favorite hobby is sneaking dicks into his presentations.

There you have it!  Join us for some story telling, some tips for being a good human, and and some sweet-ass conservation this Wednesday, September 18th, 7PM (doors at 6:30), Fargo Billiards and Gastropub.  Get your think and drink on.  See you there.

🙂 T

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Nuclear Trail Hat: August Nerd Nite

Happy Sunday, my nerds.  I feel like it’s been FOR-E-VER since the last NN.  Did HBO’s “Chernobyl” leave you both scared and fascinated?  Do you dig hiking, nature, and history?  Are you into neurological malfunctions?  Or do you just like beer and learning cool shit?  Well friend, this month’s NN is for you.

“The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat”: A Book Review. Dr. Oliver Sacks’s “The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat” is a fascinating—if occasionally unnerving—journey into the human mind, and the strange feelings and situations that befall individuals who suffer from neurological disorders. A collection of short stories, each relating an encounter with a different patient, Dr. Sacks combines medical writing and storytelling to show us the stranger side of human psychology. Three of these stories will be presented and discussed.

Erin Nyren earned her PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences from NDSU in 2013. She spent the next five years as the CEO and lead teacher of Discovery Express Kids in Fargo providing science education classes and materials to elementary students and teachers, as well as serving as a freelance editor of scientific journal articles at Enago/Crimson Interactive Ltd. She now works at Aldevron as a Technical Writer.

Nuclear Weapons: How to Let Roaches Rule.  Information you probably didn’t know and now wish you didn’t.

Rick Reichenbach : An Army brat for the first part of childhood who finally settled down in ND. He programs computers for fun, and likes to camp, fish, hunt, and play computer games.  And also scare the shit out of unsuspecting nerds with terrifying conjecture. 

The North Country National Scenic Trail and the Dakota Challenge.  You may have heard of the Appalachian Trail or the Pacific Crest trail, but the longest of the eleven National Scenic Trails in fact starts only 20 minutes from Fargo. One of 11 NSTs in the country,  the North Country Trail ends at Lake Sakakawea State Park in ND after passing through eight states on a 4660 mile trek from Vermont.  The members of the Dakota Challenge aim to hike all 438 miles in ND, but why?

Rennae Gruchalla is a charter member of the North Country Trail Association, serving as Vice President and Hike Leader of the Dakota Prairie Chapter. The purpose of the DPC is to build new trail, maintain existing trail, and to do outreach which includes sponsoring hikes, and tabling at events.

And there you have it!  We’ll be scared.  We’ll be intrigued.  We’ll be inspired.  It’s Fargo Nerd Nite, baby.  August 21st, 7PM (doors at 6:30), Fargo Billiards and Gastropub.  Be there and be square.

🙂 T

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We’re BACK!! July NN: Babies and Piggies and Studies OH MY!

Well hello there nerds.  I hope you didn’t fry up in this soupy muggy weekend.  Sorry we had to bail on you in June- speakers backing out, personal lives with stuff to do, actual work to pay the bills…you know.  BUT if you can withstand melting until Wednesday, we’re BACK with studies into human nature and metabolism:

Food, Physiology, and Eating Like a Pig.  Would it surprise you to know that we know more about how to feed a pig than we know how to feed humans?  We can learn a lot from pigs because pig physiology, growth, and development are very similar to humans. We can utilize the pig as a model for humans to study impact of food and food combinations on skin, muscle, respiratory, and cardiovascular diseases.  Pigs are omnivores with a simple stomach similar to humans, so food impacts hormone release, metabolism, and subsequent disease progression (or not).

Eric Berg is an over-educated butcher.  He received his PhD from Purdue University in Meat Science in 1996, took a post-doctoral fellowship at Texas A&M University conducting research in collaboration with the University of Texas Medical School at Houston, spent 8 years in the Department of Animal Sciences at the University of Missouri, and has been a Professor at NDSU for the past 13 years.  His research focus involves using swine as a biomedical model for humans to study how food combinations impact obesity-related metabolic disorders.

Nature or Nurture? Why do girls like dolls and boys like trucks?  There is evidence to suggest that the types of gender-typical toys children prefer can be explained by biological factors, such as hormones, that predispose children to prefer those types of toys. However, countless studies demonstrate that many of the differences between the sexes once thought to be biologically determined originate from societally-constructed environmental differences. Can the same be said about toy preferences? Studies investigating the emergence of these preferences in infancy and toddlerhood can help answer this question.

Rebecca Woods, Babyologist.  Rebecca has spent nearly 20 years studying what babies know, and how they learn about toys and other objects in their environment. Although her own three babies are all grown up, she’s still fascinated by the rapid changes that occur in infancy and how parents influence babies’ attention and learning. There is a lot more to babies than bottles, diapers, and drool.

AND, since there are only two speakers, as you know, we make up the time with TRIVIA!!  Binge if you gotta to make sure you’re up to date on our favorite underage nerds fighting evil, because this month it’s all about STRANGER THINGS.

That’s what I know!  See you this Wednesday July 17th, 7PM, (doors at 6:30) at Fargo Billiards and Gastropub.  Be there and be square.

🙂 T

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May Nerd Nite: Enter the Gene Pole

Greetings Nerds!  ARE YOU READY FOR SOME NERDING?!  Topics this month have nothing to do with eachother, as per usual. 🙂 Hawt deets:

Gene Therapy: Medicine’s New Frontier.  Gene therapies are one of the frontiers of modern medicine. This group of techniques focuses on delivering genes into patient cells or replacing mutated ones. Current gene therapy approaches include AAV-mediated gene therapy, liposome delivery, and CRIPSR-Cas9 gene editing. A number of these therapies are already commercially available, with additional disease targets currently undergoing late stage clinical trials.

Manpreet Bains (AKA Matt, AKA Bainsy) recently graduated with a Ph.D. in Molecular Pathogenesis where his research focused on the interactions of the neuropeptide, Vasoactive Intestinal Peptide, and the body. His research involved understanding how VIP impacted eosinophils and T-cells in the immune system, altered metabolism, and modified the microbiome.  This will be his third FNN presentation.  Likes include big words, LinkedIn, and reusing biographies.

Not Your Mama’s Workout: The Evolution of Pole Fitness.  Join the owners of Fargo’s >>Zero Gravity Alternative Fitness<< as they discuss the origin of pole dance and its subsequent evolution as a form of entertainment, sport, and alternative exercise. Learn the benefits of pole fitness, challenges facing the pole community, and the truth about about dancing in 9-inch platform stilettos.

Gina Bushey is a Fargo native with a background in performance and public speaking. She earned a BS in Speech Communication from NDSU, with a minor in Anthropology. Gina found her way to pole fitness in 2011. Misty found pole in 2012. Her background includes education and coaching, with a BS in Chemistry and MEd in Science Education from NDSU, and a Masters in Forensic Psychology from UND, where she is currently pursuing her PhD in Educational Foundations & Research. Together, they launched Zero Gravity Alternative Fitness in 2016. Both have performed and judged in multiple showcases and competitions since that time, and teach all levels of pole at Zero Gravity.

Plus GAME OF THRONES SUPER NERD TRIVIA.  We’ve waited SO EFFING LONG for the last season, and now it’s finally here- let’s celebrate it!  Think you know your ASOIAF facts?  Prove it!  Prizes to the winners, door prizes for others, booze for everyone!  You can’t lose!  See your beautiful faces on Wednesday, May 15th, 7PM (doors at 6:30- get there early because we’ve been running out of seats lately), at Fargo Billiards and Gastropub.  Free and open to the public.  Bring your mom- it’s what she wants.

🙂 T

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FNN Turns 4 with a Fiery Sexy River!

Good morning Nerds!  This week is shaping up to be just brilliant-  between the upcoming GoT premier and Fargo Nerd Nite’s 4th birthday show, I can barely contain my excitement!  Speakers and topics:

Sex, Gender, and Rock n Roll: Does a gender-queer pansexual sound like a DnD character to you? Bring your label-maker and learn about all the new-fangled terminology. You might even find out where you fit within all this PC stuff as we examine biological sex, gender, sexuality, and attraction and how they relate to you and others. -Ari Harveland

First time presenter Ari- who’s presented before- is coming out and coming back nerdier than ever! If she’s not explaining how she is sometimes a he, she’s crafting, cuddling with cats, or playing board games. (You might know her as Dani the Sex Nerd, but now she’s talking about the ooooother meaning of the term.)

A Night of Ice and Fire: Game of Thrones in the Real World Let’s talk about kings, assassinations, wars, and curses. We may even discuss Game of Thrones, but there is plenty of scandal and conspiracy right from the pages of history. It’s Nerd Nite’s very own Drunk History and how events from long ago continue to influence our world and George RR Martin’s story in Game of Thrones. Potential spoilers but probably way off target. – Ben Jagim

Ben earned a Bachelor’s from UND and a Master’s from Texas A&M. He operates his own insurance agency and enjoys community projects. His nerd focus includes A Song of Ice and Fire, superhero movies, Star Trek: TNG, and history. Basically, he drinks and he knows things.

Learn, Sustain and Enjoy the Red River. River Keepers was established in 1990 after a large community-wide assessment said that the Red River is underutilized, under-appreciated and in some cases mistreated.  To someday meet our vision that “All people value the Red River as a vital part of our community”, our work includes water education, water quality monitoring, river safety, riparian restoration, and river recreation. This is done so that the community understands the value and importance of the Red River, properly maintains it and safely enjoys it. – Christine Holland

Christine Holland has worked at River Keepers promoting the Red River since 1993 in various capacities including intern, administrative assistant, project coordinator, first mate, captain, purser, trip leader, and is now the executive director.  In her non-work time Christine likes to have fun dates with her nieces and nephews, read, travel, kayak, walk her dog, knit/crochet and quilt.

Plus we’ll give you prizes and cake, because we celebrate our birthday hobbit style, like any good nerd does. 🙂  See your beautiful faces Wednesday, April 17th, 7PM (doors at 6:30), at Fargo Billiards and Gastropub.

🙂 T

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