Monthly Archives: May 2016

Pub Quiz at Penny Lane, Sønderborg

Pub quizzes, as the name implies, are very popular in pubs around the UK; apparently there were over 22,000 regular pub quizzes in 2009! They are maybe not as popular in Denmark, but Penny Lane pub is one that does offer one: every Thursday night at 20:15.

I turned up to my first quiz last week with a group of friends. Doors to the pub open at 20:00, and there were already quite a number of people waiting to get in. In fact, do remember to book a table (on facebook or tlf 26348644) as the tables seem to have all been booked in advance. Luckily for me my friend had sorted that out for us. So on entering we looked around till we found the table with our team name and sat down.

Before the quiz starts the quiz master came over to explain the rules and give us the sheets where we would note down the answer. In all there were 2 halves with 16 questions each. Questions 17 and 18 in each round are bonus questions and you decide whether you want to answer them or not before they are asked (both right = double points, one right = no change, both wrong = half points for the round).

Once the quiz starts the questions go at a steady pace. Each half will have 4 ‘themes’ and the questions cycle between the themes. A few hours before the quiz the themes are posted on the Penny Lane facebook page so you can prepare yourself if you so wish. The bonus questions are riddles.

It is maybe wise to note that the quiz is in Danish. However don’t despair if your Danish is not great. All the tables around us, including ours, were speaking English between them! And we all had fun! And we still managed to come 3rd (out of maybe 8-10 teams?)!

Down to the details: participating is free, though do book in advance, and you can, of course, buy drinks during the quiz. The atmosphere is very friendly and it was good fun. A good way to spend a Thursday evening doing something a bit different.

Jens Funder-Nielsen: The H.C. Andersen Artist

Jens Funder-Nielsen has through a life-time been an author and artist of many media. Having grown up in Egernsund he moved to Copenhagen and Esbjerg to study and work, before returning to Sonderborg. We found out about him via a tip off from a friend who has bought some of his works of art to decorate her house. We wanted to learn more, so a quick phone call resulted in an appointment made to visit him in his house a couple of days later.


On arriving at his house you can immediately see that the fairytales of H.C. Andersen are some of the things that inspire him the most. The items that had originally caught my eyes were the gold-plated HC Andersen fairytale ornaments. But that is not the only H.C. Andersen-inspired items he makes. There are also paper mobiles and paper cuttings, some of which you can buy and others which you can buy books with patterns to make your own.

Besides books about paper clippings inspired by H.C. Andersen, the 14 books he has published also include decorations for Christmas, table decorations for parties, and mobiles on other themes. Looking through the books the patterns are really detailed and intricate. A work of art in themselves!

His paintings are very colourful, covering many whimsical subjects in a childlike manner. You can see a few of his paintings here and as is to be expected, the local events and landscape are also an inspiration. If you have ideas he might also be open for making some on commission.

If you are interested in his work, do think about going to visit him. Jens and his wife are very friendly people. For many years they have been producing and selling art and books out of their house in Dybbøl. At an age of 81 years Jens is getting on in years so there are no regular opening times. But make a call like we did and you can sort a visit out very easily.

Jens also mentioned that every Christmas they have an open week, so you can also keep your eyes peeled on the local newspapers for more information about that when we get closer to December. His smaller items are perfect for giving as gifts, especially if you have foreign family and friends.

Oh! And just so you don’t say we didn’t warn you! If you visit I can promise you that you won’t allow yourself to leave empty-handed! We left with a small collection of items: some for us, and some to give as gifts.

See Jens Funder-Nielsen’s website for more information.