BRISTOL - The highly anticipated Mum Festivalâ€™s Season of Events Bingo attracted bingo lovers and festival supporters alike on Sunday as part of the festivalâ€™s ongoing celebrations.
Co-sponsored by the Bristol Exchange Club and the Bristol Polish American Club, the popular bingo event is one of the biggest fundraisers for the annual Mum Festival. When doors opened at 11 a.m., eager players trickled in to pick their favorite spot or chat with friends. Longtime participant Sharon Block said she loves the atmosphere when bingo players get together and it is a great community cause to support.
â€śI look forward to this event every year,â€ť she said, getting her bingo card ready. â€śItâ€™s great to be able to help the community.â€ť
The Bristol Exchange Club is a nonprofit organization that supports programs of service in Americanism, community service, youth activities, and the prevention of child abuse. The club works closely with the Bristol Parent and Child Center and proceeds go into the centerâ€™s support and scholarship funds.
Maria Montelli-Tramazzo, Mum Festival fundraising chair, said it takes a lot to get the various festival programs going and the bingo event plays a huge role in supporting those activities.
â€śThis really is a fall tradition that people enjoy and itâ€™s great to see everyone so happy here,â€ť she said. As her first year taking over the fundraising reins, Montelli-Tramazzo said it was a lot of hard work, but the people were wonderful to work with.
â€śItâ€™s a team effort,â€ť she said. â€śPeople come back to this year after year, so we want to make sure that it stays successful.â€ť
The event included raffles and door prizes that were donated by local organizations, businesses, and private individuals.
â€śThis really is a very loving and caring community,â€ť said Joan Pelkei, a volunteer with the Bristol Exchange Club. â€śI canâ€™t begin to tell you how everyone gets so excited for this event and doing what they can to help. To me, being a part of this is very important to help our neighbors.â€ť
Although she is not a bingo player herself, Pelkei said she enjoys watching others play. â€śTheyâ€™re just so happy when they come and sit down to play a game,â€ť she said. â€śThatâ€™s enough for me.
Dianna Tack, Mum Festival parade chair, said the great thing about bingo is that it appeals to a wide range of participants.
â€śItâ€™s always nice to see different people come out to have a fun time,â€ť she said. â€śWe try to incorporate different events for the festival so everyone has a chance to enjoy themselves while helping us with our mission.â€ť
The festival weekend, Sept. 19-22, will feature a carnival with amusement rides, dozens of vendors from area businesses, crafters, local producers, restaurants, food trucks, community organizations, nonprofits, and museums. Admission is free.
New for this year is a reworked Thursday night program that will feature â€śJazz Under the Stars,â€ť plus art, food trucks, and refreshments.
For more information on the 2019 Mum Festival & Parade, visit: www.bristolmumfestival.com .