Drive-In-Bingo the Unsinkable Saviour of Summer Festival

If the weather dogged the Castleisland Summer Festival again this year, Sunday’s Drive-in-Bingo remained unshakable or maybe unsinkable.

There was a count of anything up to 250 cars in the yawning yard of Castleisland Co-Op Mart with at least three to four players in each vehicle.

With a total prize-fund of €3,500 up for the proverbial grabs and to be won with a few strokes of a pen, it’s little wonder that the craze for the game with the drive-in slant drew patrons from near and far.

A Familiar Face

Ned Burke’s is a familiar face at dog shows and at Castleisland Community Centre’s regular, weekly, conventional, indoor bingo.

Outdoors, his voice brought frustration and joy in almost equal measure to the car wrapped players. Whoops of joy escaped from rolled down windows and car horns blared as winning numbers were crossed off.

The runners ran between rows of steamed up vehicles to hand over winnings and then dart to another corner of the yard with another fist full of Euros.

Jelly Babies and Lucozade

Though there was a chip wagon on duty on the yard, sustenance for the afternoon for many of the players came by way of giant packs of biscuits, Jelly Babies and big bottles of Lucozade.

Yes, the drive-in-bingo did well and it’s surprising it isn’t held more often during the ‘summer’ months here.

The postponement of the 40k Leisure Cycle on Friday evening was all down to health and safety issues as the ambulance cover arranged for the event decided that conditions were not conducive to the well-being of the participants.

St. Ita’s and St. Joseph’s School

The organisers are looking to the coming Friday evening, June 16th to run off the event which is in aid of St Ita’s and St Joseph’s National School, Tralee.

Registration will take place at the Library Car Park at 6.30pm. There is an entry fee of €10 per bike and the cycle will start at 7pm.

Cheque Presentation Ceremony

The festival profits will be presented to the various, nominated charities by means of a brief cheque handover ceremony at Tom McCarthy’s Central Bar on Friday, June 30th at 9:30pm.

As for the drive-in-bingo, the often excellent Curious Ear on RTÉ Radio One did a documentary on one such event a few years ago and it can be found on the station’s vast collection of such work.

The bingo players among our readers might like to fill a glass or a cup, sit down and listen to something right up your street. Please click here:

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