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Senior bingo makes a comeback at the Oldemeyer Center

SEASIDE, Calif. (KION)- With Covid cases on the decline, many are finding themselves back to normalcy.

That includes seniors who are back to playing bingo every Tuesday afternoon.

It’s officially game on at the Oldemeyer Center.

After more than a year of being shut down due to Covid, senior bingo is slowly making a comeback.

Isle Bledsoe comes almost every week to play and noticed some familiar faces.

"It's just nice to be able to talk to your friends, meet new people, and make new friends," says Bledsoe

It’s a day bingo fans and the program organizers have looked forward to.

Alicia Lopezperez a Senior Program Coordinator at the center says she was excited to see seniors come back

"We were closed for almost a year because of the pandemic and almost every day I would get phone calls asking when's bingo coming back," said Lopezperez

Everyone gathers at noon on Tuesdays to play ten rounds of bingo.

Seniors from all over the Central Coast test their luck, balancing patience and persistence.

Delane Johnson says bingo is more than just a game, it's a bonding experience as well.

"It's very easy to come here and sit down and talk with other people that think like us, but bingo is a pastime thing
for us down here," says Johnson.

Volunteers also make sure seniors receive a little extra care in between games.

Rita Oglesby a Senior Program Volunteer mentions that during the games food is also offered.

"We have coffee, and pastries that we offer complimentary, and then we provide meals on wheels programs, foods, lunches for them whoever signs up," says Oglesby.

Aside from the competitive spirit going on for those few hours the prizes aren't what made most come running back. But win or lose. Loperez says having everyone back in the building is the best part.

"To see everyone back in the building and having a good time, laughing getting to chat with one another that's my favorite part and how excited they get every time they will. It's not about the prizes even for them it's about coming together as a community"

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Taryn Mitchell

Taryn Mitchell is a weekend anchor and multimedia journalist at KION News Channel 5/46.


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