Create a Fun Family Night for Your School Community
Holding a Candy Bar Bingo Night for your school is a fun way to get the community together. If your PTA or religious school youth group is looking for a fun and free night for families, I can guarantee that a this event will be a huge success, as the prize for winning Bingo is a candy bar!
My children's school has been hosting this family night of fun for over ten years, and it is always well attended. Here is how you can organize one for your school or organization.
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Organize a Committee
As always, you will need a group of dedicated individuals to plan this event for your school. The date and venue needs to be selected according to your school's calendar, and ensure that custodial help is scheduled. Our school has held Bingo on various nights over the years, but Friday seems to be the most favored one, as teachers do not give homework over the weekend.
You will need committee members to do the following tasks:
- Be there a half-hour early for set-up (organize dessert table, get Bingo set up, get prizes out, fill water jugs)
- Have two people at the front door to collect the Candy Bars and hand out crayons if needed
- Have a parent or two run the candy bars you get from the admission table to the prize table
- Three to four people in rotation to man the prize table so each person can help and still play Bingo with their family.
- Parents to help clean up and pass out Bingo cards between games (you may want to give this job to Student Council members, the older kids in the elementary school)
- People to stay and help clean-up
Make a Difference
An other idea to help make this fun-raiser a service project is to ask families to bring in a can or boxed good for your local food pantry. Asking one item per person attending will make a huge impact.
Things You Need
You will need a Bingo set, an investment for your school if you plan on holding Candy Bar Bingo as a yearly event. We use our All Purpose Room's large screen and an overhead with the Bingo numbers crossed off on a transparency as they are called.
You will also need to use the venue's microphone system because this night of fun gets very loud!
Of course, you will have to purchase Bingo cards to play. The set below has 1500 cards, which is more than enough, because you do not want to run out! With different colors, you can also differentiate the games.
While our school flyer asks parents to bring their own markers or crayons to mark their Bingo cards, people do forget. We have a large box of crayons that we keep in our PTA closet just for this occasion.
Because this event takes place after dinner, we ask our Baking Committee and any other families that are attending to please bring in a dessert to share. The PTA provides the napkins, plates, and cups as well as large jugs of water.
In order for Candy Bar Bingo to succeed, you will need CANDY BARS! The price of admission is one regular sized per person. These are taken as the people check in at the front door.
It is also nice to have a variety of prizes for the winners. We typically have leftover prizes to give out from other functions our PTA performs. The kids never seem to tire of them!
Once everyone has arrived, the Bingo caller will begin the game. Since it will be hard for total silence, the best you can do is to stop calling numbers until there is relative calm. Be sure to explain the type of Bingo game you will be calling-traditional, letters "L" ,"T" or "X" or coverall. don't do too many special games, as the kids don't have the attention span.
Once someone has declared "BINGO!", it is checked by the parent checking off the numbers. Once it is deemed good, the winner gets to select a candy bar and an extra prize. If there is more than one winner, then all get to choose two prizes.
Our Candy Bar Bingo tradition permits us to keep calling numbers until we have a few more winners from the card. These winners get to pick one candy bar.
After the final game of Candy Bar Bingo, any child who has not won a game is entitled to select one of the remaining candy bars.
When we play Candy Bar Bingo this way, then everyone is a winner!