History of Bingo In The U.S.
According to Mrs. Espinosa author of, Start a Bingo Hall, 1 in 8 people play bingo in the US and 90% of those players are under 50 years old with 35% under 35 years old. Contrary to popular belief bingo isn’t your grandma’s bingo anymore! Roots of Modern Bingo actually started all the way back in Italy during the 16th century - it was closer to a lottery than what bingo is known as today. The French made it the game it is today using 90 wooden discs in the 18th century, later the Germans adopted this method to create an educational game for children to learn their times tables. Today bingo is still considered a “brain game” which is why it is not gambling. It takes skill to be a successful bingo player.
The name Bingo was not the original name, after a New York Toy Salesman saw the game called “Beano” being played at a carnival using beans as dotters on their numbered cards he adopted the idea and took it back to New York. Then one day as he was playing Beano with friends, a woman became so excited that she screamed Bingo instead of Beano. Alas, the name is born and the Bingo industry in the Americas is formed and became very popular within churches for fundraising efforts. According to Mrs.Espinosa, “By 1934 it was estimated more than 10,000 bingo games were being played a week and today, the national game grosses over $90 million a week in america alone.”
The Bingo industry is forever on the upward trend despite the rules and regulations placed on the game. It became especially popular when the movie Beach Blanket Bingo came to the big screen. Here at The Cotton Company, an old Cotton Exchange Warehouse revitalized to house over 60 vendors selling gifts, jewelry, and more, we want to recreate and update this iconic movie. Using our non-profit, Graham Johnson Cultural Arts Endowment, which was formed in memory of Graham Johnson to reach out to students in the community and enrich their lives through the arts. We are using bingo to grow GJCAE as well as increase the profits and traffic in our close-knit community. We are proud to announce that we will bring the community together, enrich the lives of children in the arts and create a fun environment for families and friends to enjoy!