Forget everything you think you know about BINGO because Honey… this ain’t your Grandma’s Bingo!
Drag queens, outlandish outfits, contests, and prizes with raunchy and ribald humor,
Drag Bingo is not for the faint of heart. No one is safe and nothing is sacred but it is all in good fun.
Drag Bingo is in our 26th Season, and like any bingo, it is a game of chance where participants try to create rows, columns, or special shapes on their grid of 5X5 numbers based on random numbers. Sponsors, Special guests, or the Drag Queens themselves call the numbers for each game. There are surprises galore so you never know what you are going to hear or see. “Special Games” are played throughout the night as well so there are many chances and ways to win.
Held on the 3rd Thursday of the month* at the famous Rhodes on the Pawtuxet in Cranston, this fun night is filled with lots of laughs and crazy antics, all while raising much-needed funds for the programs and services of AIDS Care Ocean State. Cost is $25 for a Bingo Packet, CASH OR CHECK ONLY and they cannot be purchased in advance. There is a different theme every month and costumes & table décor are strongly encouraged so be creative. This is an 18+ event (no exceptions) and there is plenty of free parking. Doors open at 5pm and the game begins at 7pm sharp!
Seating is first-come, first-serve so please arrive as close to 5pm as possible on the Thursday of Drag Bingo. No guarantee seating if we reach capacity or if you arrive after 7pm unless signed up as a Full Circle RSVP. Alcohol is NOT allowed in the main ballroom.
Doors open at 5pm with a cash bar Cocktail Hour before the start of the Drag Bingo game. Food can be purchased from Friskie Fries throughout the evening but you can also bring your own food and snacks. By state law, alcohol is NOT allowed in the main ballroom and will not be served 15 mins before the game begins. Doors to the main ballroom will open at 5:30pm. Did we mention, alcohol is NOT allowed in the main ballroom?
* December Drag Bingo is on the 2nd Thursday of the Month. May Pride Edition Drag Bingo is on the Last Thursday of the Month
***Full Circle RSVP***
To reserve a table of 10 is an additional $5/person = $50 fee per table of 10 and can be paid online by clicking this link. Please scroll and click on "Full Circle Table of 10" from the dropdown menu so your information can be captured. This would reserve a table for 10 people for the night of Drag Bingo. However, if you are not able to fill your table (10 people) and you have empty seats on the night of Drag Bingo, the remaining seats may be filled as needed with other players.
This fee is not refundable if you cancel your Full Circle RSVP and, Per State of RI law, does NOT go towards the $25 Bingo Packet cost per person to play Drag Bingo. Please enter the month/date of the Drag Bingo you will attend in the "Add a donation note/comment" box. This charge is completely separate and cannot be combined with any other Drag Bingo purchases. Furthermore, the payment of the $50 Full Circle RSVP does not guarantee a person is able to play Drag Bingo if they arrive after 7pm unless someone else had already purchased a Bingo Booklet for them prior to 7pm on the night of Drag Bingo. Under no circumstances can Bingo Booklets be sold once the Drag Bingo games have begun at 7pm so the Full Circle RSVP is only to reserve a table of 10.
Season #26 Master Season Sponsor
Season #26 Premier Circle Season Sponsors
Thomas F. Matt Trust
Season #26 Drag Bingo Schedule Sept 2023 - May 2024
September 21st I'm a Barbie Gurl!- Dress in Pink or Like Barbie
October 19th Nightmare on the Pawtuxet- Costume Contest- $100 Prize
November 16th Cornucopia, Horn of Plenty- Nonperishable Food Drive & Pie Eating Contest- $100 Prize
*December 14th (2nd Thursday) Turn the Yuletide Gay- Gift Certificate or Unwrapped Toy Drive
January 18th Neon 90's- Wear Your Brightest 90's Attire
February 15th Alice in Wonderland- Dress as your favorite charter from the novel/movie
March 21st Easter Bonnet BINGO!- Easter Bonnet Contest- $100 Prize
April 18th Toga, Toga, Toga!- Wear/Create Your Best Toga
May 16th Will You Go To Prom With Me?- Get Dressed up in Prom Attire or Formal Wear
*May 30th (Last Thursday) PRIDE Edition Drag Bingo- To Benefit RIPide
The History of Drag Bingo
Courtesy of The Wink Bingo Blog
Drag Queen Bingo finds its roots in Seattle in the 1990s. Dreamed up by Judy Werle, then Director of Development for the Chicken Soup Brigade (a support organization for people with AIDS), it was envisaged as a way to raise capital for their charitable aims.
As Judy explained in a 2007 interview for Time Magizne, “I checked out places where people gathered and spent money, because I figured if you had that, you could redirect the money to a good cause.”
It was this logic that led the fundraising mastermind to bingo halls: “They were totally full of obsessed people, but it was also extremely boring, so we decided to liven it up in the way that only gay men can.”
The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, a group of drag queens dressed as nuns, was formed with this in mind. On their very first night of performing, the line of attendees would stretch around the block, prompting the charity to almost immediately schedule more.
It wasn’t just the LGBT+ community in attendance either. Although they did make up a large part of the Drag Queen Bingo’s original audience, they were joined by many others – exceptionally good news for the Brigade, whose mission to expand their donor base was suddenly made an awful lot easier.
Soon, the game was bringing together individuals from all walks of life. Its popularity spread further and further afield, until people were playing in Boston, Chicago, Denver, San Francisco, [Rhode Island] and, finally, all around the world. By the noughties, it had even merited a mention on Sex and the City!