Bingo isn’t just for old ladies playing in church basements anymore. With the rise in popularity at bars and with theme bingos, the classic game is getting a modern hip twist. Chicago has a wide selection of venues for all your bingo needs. Here are a list of some of the best bingo games in town for the 21+ crowd. You may not want to invite Grandma to the game, but you’re guaranteed to have a good time. Now grab a card and start playing!
Clipper Bingo at The California Clipper
Where: The California Clipper, 1002 N. California Ave
When: Every Monday Night; 10:30pm (the site says 10:30ish though)
Info: The California Clipper, located in the Humboldt Park area but close to Bucktown and Logan Square, is one of my favorite bars around. The dark red lighting, the speakeasy feel, and their tasty and potent vodka gimlets won me over. Add in free Bingo and it’s a match made in heaven. Grab a card and if you win, you get a â€œbag of crapâ€ from Uncle Fun, the quirky Lakeview store of random goods.
Dirty Bingo at Victory Liquors and Cans Bar and Canteen
Where: Victory Liquors, 2610 N. Halsted
Cans Bar and Canteen, 1640 N. Damen
When: 1st and 3rd Thursday of every month from 8-10pm at Victory Liquors; 2nd Wednesday of every month from 8-10pm at Cans Bar and Canteen
Cost: $10 gets you 10 bingo boards and 1 complimentary drink
Info: This is bingo that may make you blush. Dirty Bingo promises that you’ll â€œyell, scream, swear and win prizes,â€ all while helping out various local charities, the recipients of your $10 bingo fee. The prizes range from free drinks to a variety of donated items from adult stores, and you’ll get to live out the dream of yelling about private parts in a crowded bar. As Salt â€˜N’ Pepa said back in 1991, â€œlet’s talk about sex baby!â€
Rock â€˜N’ Roll Bingo at 44th Ward Dinner Party
Where: 44th Ward Dinner Party, 3542 N. Halsted
When: They just started last month, so look for it to continue and hopefully become a regular event.
Cost: Free, but you enter to play by starting a tab with a 2 drink minimum.
Info: For the music nerd, head over to 44th Ward and put your music geekdom to the test. Start a tab (there are usually drink specials as well) and get your â€œWard Bingoâ€ card with images of different bands or artists on it. As you hear the songs, you match the music to the musicians on your card. When you win, you either get your entire tab comp’d, or you get cash for the same amount. While you’re playing, grab one of their signature grilled cheese sandwiches, where you mix and match to create a tasty treat, then grab a friend and have a photo session in their vintage photo booth.
HamBINGO at Hamburger Mary’s
Where: Hamburger Mary’s, 5400 N. Clark St
When: Every Monday night, 8-10pm
Cost: $5 per card, all proceeds donated to various local charities
Info: I can get behind a bingo game that offers up drink specials ($5 Sauza margaritas, $3 Bud Light Lime, and $2 jello shots) and promises â€œVelicity Metropolis calling the balls.â€ I never would have thought of it, but drag queens and bingo do go together perfectly, just like ice cream and apple pie. Once again, the proceeds benefit a different local charity each week, so you’ll get a fun night and help out a good cause.