Widgetized Section

Go to Admin » Appearance » Widgets » and move Gabfire Widget: Social into that MastheadOverlay zone

Edisto Lions Club Expands July BINGO


Jeff Dennis is a
Lowcountry native.
Read his blog at

If you think you’ve seen it all when it comes to Edisto Island Lions Club Summer Bingo games… Guess Again! Their twice-a-week summer Bingo games have been continuous since 1956 when the Lions Club building was constructed. This same building was damaged by Hurricane Matthew and required extensive renovations. For the first time, due to high demand from summer vacationers, the Bingo games will be expanded during the first two weeks of July 2017. So, for a limited time, get ready to play Bingo on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday afternoons.
When I attended the June 15 Bingo games at Edisto I saw first hand how marvelous the building repairs turned out after Matthew left their facility swamped. The cinder block walls remained the same but the interior walls and ceiling were so degraded that major repairs were in order. Edisto Island Lions Club members solicited the building materials from community business leaders, and they did most of the repair work themselves. The inside of their building looks great with new carpet, fresh paint, and the air conditioning system keeps the Bingo playing conditions comfortable.
Each Bingo session is an opportunity for a Lions Club volunteer to perform the duties of calling out the randomly drawn numbers that players use on their Bingo cards. On June 15, Edisto Beach Mayor Jane Darby, wife of Lions Club member Larry Darby, was handling those duties. “Each night we play 15 games of Bingo, with the first 9 games awarding prizes like a beach chair or game, while the last 6 games award cash prizes,” said Darby. “The Lions Club Bingo operates under the guidelines on the S.C. Department of Revenue, and by law we give back 50-percent of Bingo proceeds to the players.”
“Folks line up outside the Lions Club waiting to get in before we open the doors at 6 p.m.,” said Darby. “This is very much a family-oriented Bingo game, and everyone takes turns buying a Bingo card to play for the afternoon. Drinks and snacks are available for sale at the concession stand during Bingo too. The machine that randomly draws the Bingo numbers is vintage 1950’s and it is another great part of the Edisto Bingo tradition.” Jane Darby has been a caller for the Bingo games since 1996, and she is a part of the team of callers that take turns summer Bingo.
“Programs that benefit vision and eyeglasses are what the Lions Club is best known for wherever you go,” said member Tom Edens. “Going back since the 1950’s the Edisto Island Lions Club has donated $400K to kids eye health via Bingo proceeds and volunteer contributions. Local businesses donate some of our prizes but we buy what we need to supplement that. The bottom line is that our philanthropy efforts are bolstered by the generous community support we receive.”
Edisto Beach Fire Chief, Denney Conley, is frequently on hand at Bingo sessions to verify that local fire code enforcements are being monitored. “We are very proud of the Edisto Lions Club Bingo, and of our Mayor too,” said Conley. He referred me to longtime member Bob Newton to put the timeline of Edisto Bingo into words. “We have many families with members that recall playing Bingo in the late 1950’s and now their grandchildren are also playing Bingo in the same location,” said Newton.
Fun in the sun down on the beach at the waterline is undoubtedly the number one draw for families visiting Edisto. Planning a visit to play Bingo at the Lions Club is also popular since it offers the chance to win a prize or make a memory that anyone can take home with them. I visited with one family that had six youths in attendance for a Tuesday session of Bingo, and they had such a positive experience without even winning any prizes, that they made a return visit to Thursday Bingo two days later. The Edisto Island Lions Club is located at 2907 Myrtle Street.



Jeff Dennis is a Lowcountry native. Read his blog at LowcountryOutdoors.com

Jeff Dennis, Contributor (330 Posts)

Jeff Dennis is a Lowcountry native. Read his blog at www.LowcountryOutdoors.com