The only thing better than playing bingo with 100 of your best friends, is when you’re also doing it to raise money for the Calistoga Firefighters Association.
That’s what Calistogans do once a year on a cold November night in the Tubbs Building at the Napa County Fairgrounds, surrounded by friends and neighbors sharing laughs, and the agony of that one missing number.
Whether it’s counting on your favorite troll, or sitting next to your best friend, the variety of winning bingo strategies are matched only by the exuberance of ardent players.
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This year, on Nov. 23 winning bingo players walked away with prizes that included wine lots, sports and camping equipment and unique artwork. There was also a silent auction with rare wine lots for players to bid on.
The event came just two weeks after the containment of the Kincade Fire, which burned 77,700 acres in Sonoma County, and threatened Calistoga with an evacuation advisory.
Calistoga Fire Chief Steve Campbell said this year’s turnout was a little larger than last year’s. He also said the Association recently received a donation of $18,000 from Solage Calistoga.