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Published September 15th 2016
For a good old fashioned fun night out
After about four years break from playing a bingo game, I decided to join some mates who are regular players. I had played a few times when I was on holidays in Queensland. Up there they have some huge bingo events, with one I went to in Townsville attracting over 1000 players on a Sunday afternoon. It seems every larger regional town across the country has a bingo event. Here in Adelaide things are a little quieter. There are some good Bingo events every week in the suburbs with a list given here for the northern venues. If you know any more in the north only, or north east please add them on the comments below.
All ready to go. A table at a bingo venue. Image by Out and About.
TANUNDA Venue- The Clubhouse (Social Club) 45 Macdonnell St.
104 Queen St Alberton Day- Friday 10.30 am and 12.45pm Play one or both sessions with a break for lunch.
ELIZABETH Venue- Elizabeth East RSL 70 Midway Rd Day-Sunday eyes down at 7pm for the mini games, then 8-10pm for main game. Meals available from 5.30pm
Venue-Central Districts Football Club 12 Goodman Rd just down from the acqautic centre. Day- Sunday 7pm This venue has a large room with a snack bar with all junk food such as pies and cups of chips. The club bistro opens at 6pm if you want a better quality meal before the game but you would have to get your order in as soon as they open to be ready to play on time.
Venue- United Way Bingo at Playford Civic Centre (same building as Shedley Theatre and Library)
Day- Wednesday and Sundays. Mini round games at 6.30pm and finish up close to the second round at 8pm.
A crowd of bingoers all set to play. Image by Out and About.
Venue- Parahills Community Club on Bridge Road
This large club has bingo events on many days of the week during the day and at night.. Check the website for a time that suits you here.
Also this venue holds DISCO BINGO
Day- Wednesday at 7pm but be there earlier to order and eat in time.
This is not traditional bingo. Disco Bingo is a fun game played to music with a DJ spinning a line or rather a click of his computer for a line from a song. A tune like "love potion number nine" means you mark of number 9. There are embarrassing penalties if you call out that you have won and actually haven't. Perhaps you will have to pay a small fine with funds to charity. It is a lot of fun to go with a group of friends. Free tickets are given with meal and drinks, so no extra costs. Order your meal at the bar for your free tickets, with the game played in the front bar seating area.
Day- Saturday starts 12.15pm
Venue- Salisbury RSL 19 Park Terrace, across from railway station.
They have raffles and bingo cards with games starting at 12.15pm sharp at lunch time on Saturdays. A good small venue if you don't want to go out at night. Two RSL ladies run the show with a few laughs. Full bar facilities and snacks of pies, cakes, sandwiches available. Free tea and coffee.
Image by Out and About.
Attending a bingo game again was a fascinating insight into suburban culture. Die hard players come every week and set up early in their regular chairs. Apparently there is an unwritten seating reservation for regulars and it is not correct etiquette to sit in someone's usual spot. I found it highly amusing at the paraphernalia taken along to Bingo. Some bring their lucky stuffed toys, drink bottles, and some have a special sloping board to rest the game sheet on. All the marker pens are essential, with many bringing along a wide selection. If you don't have a dabber marker pen, which are so much faster than ordinary thin textas, you can buy one with your tickets.
Essential equipment. Bingo dabbers for sale. Image by Out and About.
If you are a newbie you will need to learn how the games are called. For each game card they have two calls. The first call has a menu card with selected numbers only such as playing for top line or all 4 corners with a winner for that round. Then the whole game with all numbers is called. The game menu has the order of games with names such as "racetrack" or "four corners". People use a thin texta to mark underneath the numbers so they can quickly find them. Get there early and ask a regular if they have time to give you a quick lesson. With helpful instructions from an expert and my purchase of 3 games per round, I was set to go. There are 5 games per sheet and I think 3 was a bit too many for a beginner. Numbers were called so fast I think I left many unmarked. To start off I recommend one of two game sheets only.
After my mini round I am convinced playing bingo uses different parts of brain function than other tedious daily entertainment. Watching television doesn't use the grey matter like this. You really have to think and concentrate. So if you skip the greasy snacks, and enjoy a bingo game it can be a healthy thing to do. I would not call it a fun outing. Go early with your friends for a catch up before play starts. It is all eyes down and serious here. This brain exercise at its best.