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$2.5K bingo prizes need over 80 players

By Ritchie Starnes,
News Editor
Cash-prize bingo returns to Albemarle tonight.
Bingo players will be delighted to know that not only has the game returned, but large cash payouts will be available to the winners. However, the amount of the cash prize depends on the number of players.
On behalf of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 2908 and the Waverly Owen Skidmore Auxiliary, there will be bingo at 7 p.m. every Tuesday at the Post, 119 Anderson Road. If organizers can secure more than 80 players, there will be up to a maximum payout of $2,500 available among 10 games.
Proceeds from the game support veterans’ programs.
For the past several months, the Auxiliary has been working at obtaining a permit from the state to sponsor cash-paying bingo. Per the license, the Post had to provide documentation of its original charter, which dated back to 1941.
“You can’t just open a bingo parlor,” said Christy Thompson, treasurer for the Auxiliary.
There are specific rules governing bingo when it comes to cash prizes. For example, consumption of alcohol is prohibited during the game. Since the Post has a bar area, the door between the bar and the bingo hall must remain locked.
While patrons are not allowed to consume alcoholic beverages, snacks and non-alcoholic drinks will be available for purchase at the canteen.
About three years ago the group purchased equipment for bingo from a local chapter of Disabled American Veterans (DAV) in anticipation of again hosting bingo as a fundraiser. DAV is the last known nonprofit in the county to offer cash prizes for bingo, according to Wendy Rachels, Auxiliary president.
Efforts are underway to entice more than 80 players, but the games will proceed if there are fewer. However, cash prizes will be smaller if fewer patrons opt to play.
“You have to have at least 20 players for it to benefit the Post at all,” said Rachels.
If there are between 20 and 40 players, games 1-8 will pay $50 to the winner; game No. 9 will pay $75; and game No. 10 will pay $100.
If there are between 41-60 games, 1-8 will pay $75; No. 9 – $100; and game No. 10 will pay $200; 61-80 players pays $75 for games 1-5; games 6-8 – $100, No. 9 – $150; and $250 for game No. 10.
Single cards cost $6; a 4-pack, or 12 cards, is available for $22; an 8-pack is $30; and a 12-pack is $38.
For more details, call (704) 982-6383 after 4 p.m.