The Bluffton Rotary Club has been playing Bingo with the same deck of cards since October 2011. The pot started at zero and steadily grew as the cards slowly dwindled. Week after week, a member drew a card…every card but the joker. The pot grew to $1,000 and interest increased, as did attendance. And still no winner. Then there were 10 cards left…then 5…and finally only two cards left, with still no winner. Suspense increased, as did attendance. We could all feel the excitement in the air.

On November 14, with only the Joker left, the drawn ticket produced a winner. But alas, the ticket had been purchased for someone not present and the rule “must be present to play” made the ticket invalid. The board met and decided on two proposals for moving forward. The two proposals were emailed to membership. Options were presented to the members for a vote at the Bluffton Rotary Club meeting on November 28. A third option was added from the floor, then a fourth option added from the floor. The fourth option was to give the bingo pot to the holder of the winning ticket, even though he was not present to play.

At the last minute, our ticket holder, Pike Jones, made a motion that he wanted his name removed from option 4, as he was not there and should not win. Instead, Pike reminded us all that there are many people in our community in need, as evidenced by the almost 150 children we just bought shoes for at Happy Feet and the number of families and children we are adopting for our Christmas Angels projects. Pike then asked for option 4 to give all the money to our Christmas Angels fund.

In the vote, the club resoundingly voted to give the bingo pot (an amazing $2,717) to the Christmas fund! The Christmas spirit and Rotary 4-way test were truly with us on Wednesday morning! I am proud of each and every member in our club and proud to be a member of the Bluffton Rotary Club. Thanks for all you do, your generosity and caring spirit! And thanks to our real heroes, John George who bought Pike’s ticket for him, turned it back in and upheld the 4-way test on November 14 and Pike for his generosity and understanding! With this generous gift from the Bluffton Rotary Club, 40 local children will have a Merry Christmas!