Turkey Bingo Raises $3,800 for Twin Cities Rotary; Money Will Be Used for Wheelchair Accessible Ramps


True party people know turkey bingo is the hip place to be on Saturday nights.

The Chehalis Eagles event space was packed to standing-room only on Saturday from 4 to 6 p.m. for the Twin Cities Rotary Club’s annual turkey bingo event.

Bingoers could win a turkey or a grand prize of $300 for the blackout, which went to Chehalis resident Katie Rider.

Twelve Butterball turkeys donated by Walmart were given away along with eight toys and other small prizes.

This was the first year the event flier proclaimed “all ages” were welcome, and folks from all over the county did not pass up the chance to bring kids and grandparents alike for the low-stakes gambling game.

About 175 people showed up, raising a total of $3,800.

“The kid element was brand new, putting kid friendly on there had something to do with the attendance,” said Mike Evinger, the club’s fundraising chair.

Plus, it was all for a good cause: funds will go toward building wheelchair accessible ramps in a partnership with Love In the Name of Christ (INC).

In honor of Leon Bowman, a former Twin Cities Rotary Club president who has since died, a team of rotarians called “Leon’s Team” helps install residential wheelchair ramps.

“We do five or six ramps a year,” Evinger said. “It’s life changing for these people … just the freedom and ability to get outside and feed the birds.”

Now in its fourth year, Saturday’s bingo went off better than any before, he said.  But a few lessons were learned, too. Next year, they will plan for a much bigger crowd and possibly invest in a bingo scoreboard, making it easier on hard-of-hearing guests.

“It’s evolving and branding and growing into a legacy,” Evinger said.