Bingo’s low Friday attendance could hurt programs
June 29, 2009 · Updated 11:16 PM
Since 1990, bingo has provided funding for the Bonney Lake Senior Center and its programs.
But declining numbers at Friday night bingo could force the center to eliminate some programs for seniors.
Bingo chairwoman Dorothy Dominguez said Friday night bingo usually draws an average of between 55 and 60 people, but in recent weeks she has seen half the normal attendance.
“This is the only fundraiser we have,” said Dominguez, who is vice president of the center’s Advisory Board. “Friday night bingo is very slow.”
She said she thinks it could be the economy.
Dominguez, who has worked with bingo since 1992, said the money generated by the bingo games helps senior programs like foot care, trips, special events and activities.
She said last year, bingo generated about $50,000, clearing a profit of about $23,000 for programs.
This year, Dominquez said, since January they’ve cleared an average of less than $2,000 per month and it’s declining.
Senior Services Assistant Staci Guirsch said if the amount of money raised is significantly less than in 2008, then the foot care, trips and special event programs could be discontinued.
“Bingo raised money for us to pay for our entertainment and a majority of special events,” Guirsch said.
She said normally it costs about $27 to provide foot care twice a month to seniors. She said the Advisory Board pays $14 of the cost.
“The seniors can’t afford to pay the entire amount each month,” Guirsch added.
Dominguez said the board has donated money to the elementary schools, food banks, Lions 4 Kids and Bonney Lake Days.
Since April, the senior center has been serving family dinners on the fourth Friday each month. Dinner is served at 5 p.m. and bingo begins at 7 p.m. The meal includes salad and a drink.
Cost is $5 for children under age 13 and $7 for 13 and older.
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