The Nerd Prom is where geeks come out to play
Andy Rok is a nerd — and he’s damn proud of it. Because what would all of our lives be without the nerds of the world? Certainly we wouldn’t be typing on anything right now, aside from a few river rocks and dry twigs crudely glued together with hive-droppings and hope. It’s the nerds that drive our world to what it is today, and for all the work they do for us, Andy Rok wants to throw them a party.
The annual Nerd Prom takes place this Saturday, Feb 28, at the Summit Music Hall in downtown Denver. It’s the 4th year Rok and his team have put it together, and is something that’s morphed into its own beast — a progression he sees fit to make it about something higher than just promoting his now defunct band, Bop Skizzum.
“At first, honestly, it was another way to have people come to a Skizzum show,” he says. “When you play in a local band, everyone sees you play a million times. How do you do something different and make it an event instead of just, ‘Hey come see my band play, again’?”
Inspired by the now dominating culture of geekdom, Rok says he started throwing the Nerd Prom as a way for people to dress up in wild costumes, let go of social constructs and go nutty in ways most local shows don’t. When the rooms started packing out with fans the first few times, he knew he was on to something — and hasn’t looked back since.
This year he says he’s trying to focus on making the night its own brand, which is why he’s employed the help of national outfit I Fight Dragons — a band widely known for making music out of old Nintendo gaming systems and Game Boys. It’s a night Rok sees being successful on a national level with touring dates across the country.
“It’s a night where nerds and normal can cohabitate” Rok says with a laugh. “That’s kind of the goal. We want to celebrate nerdery; nerds rule everything.”
The Nerd Prom is special because it tailors itself to a different lifestyle that may not normally get out to see live music on a weekend. He says that’s why the music is only half of the fun, as he wanted to employ more to get a wide and eclectic mix. The event now hosts a photo booth, costume contest, naming the Nerd Prom King and Queen, booking more DJs for dancing and the entirety of it culminates with a massive gathering of 20+ musicians playing the full soundtrack to the Guardians of the Galaxy movie — a nerdly blockbuster in its own right.
Tickets are on sale now and can be found at SodaJerkPresents.com. Costumes, Rok says, aren’t mandatory, but the best costume of the night wins a cash prize of $500 — so it would be un-nerdly not to try. Tickets to the generally sold out Comic Con are also available to win. So unlike your last prom in high school, this one seeks to give you rad things, and doesn't want to suck your wallet dry while punching your self-esteem in the gut. We see you Clint Sherman — you damn bully!