Kinsmen TV bingo selling out of cards in Kingston during COVID-19 pandemic

Kinsmen TV bingo selling out of cards in Kingston during COVID-19 pandemic

The Kinsmen’s Super TV bingo season was cut short last year when the coronavirus pandemic started, but since they kicked off their new season in November, the show is more popular than ever.

Organizers say they anticipated a potential increase in bingo card sales as people are staying home more, but they didn’t expect the play-at-home bingo game to explode as it has over the past few months.

“Sales have never been better than this year,” said Reed Manley, one of the bingo’s co-chairs.

He said organizers increased the card circulation to 18,000 a week when the season started back up in November, but that still wasn’t enough.

Manley says they now have about 27,000 bingo cards in circulation each week.

The bingo game is aired on Global TV in the Kingston and Peterborough areas, and offers prizes up to $5,000. The game is run by volunteers with local Kinsmen, Kinette and Kin Clubs, and much of the proceeds of the card purchases to local food banks, hospitals, Boys and Girls Clubs, the Salvation Army and other local charities, according to the game’s website.

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While the Super TV Bingo has been around for a quarter-century, for many like Jennifer Yascheshyn and her family, it’s a new pleasure that helps pass the time while staying safe at home.

Only into their second week of playing the classic TV bingo game, Yascheshyn says her family has caught a fever for the game.

“The kids had a lot of fun, and so we’re hoping it’ll become a new Saturday night tradition for us,” she said.

Despite the addition of thousands of new bingo cards each week, Yascheshyn said the cards can still be hard to come by.

“This weekend we found our secret spot that didn’t sell out, I’m not going to reveal the secret location, but they have a whole bunch of them,” she said.
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