The most Epic Bingo since the pandemic

Emily Fritz | A&E Editor | Members of the Duquesne Program Council plan and prepare for Epic Bingo over the course of several months.

Emily Fritz | A&E Editor

Feb. 16, 2023

Although Duquesne Program Council (DPC) hosts events almost every Friday night, a line began to form around 7:30 p.m. outside of the Union Ballroom on the evening of Feb. 10 in anticipation of their semi-annual flagship event: Epic Bingo.

More than 500 students came out for their chance to win table prizes, door prizes and rock-paper-scissor duels for even bigger Bingo prizes. Though snacks were provided, the selection of chips and lemonade were gone within minutes of the 9 p.m. start-time.

For each of the 10 rounds, a special Bingo pattern was announced, among them were designs that resembled a coffee mug, a football, different brand and team logos, an apple and an old-fashioned television complete with antennae. Corresponding to each of the patterns were unique prizes. For example, the prize for a completed Bingo pattern that resembled a burger during the “food lovers” round was over $200 in restaurant gift cards.

During the break between rounds, two random table numbers were called and the lucky few seated there were given smaller group prizes like SpongeBob-themed LEGO sets, blankets or ceiling lightshow projectors. Door prizes were also drawn for individual students.

With so many students playing, there were many duplicate winners. To raise the stakes, these individuals had to face-off via rock-paper-scissors. The contender who won the best of three walked away with grand prizes.

In a three-way tie, the announcer recorded a number and had each of the rivals select a number that they believed was closest. The winner of the number-guessing was given the bye while the other two participants completed the best of three rock-paper-scissors matches.

Joseph Fish, one of the three winners in round seven, did not win the bye but managed to dominate both of his opponents in rock-paper-scissors.

“I was definitely feeling the underdog woes on RPS when I lost the number guessing game. I was thinking, ‘Man, now I gotta beat two people.’ Luckily I’ve theory crafted about RPS strategy as much as the next bored college student, so I figured I definitely had a shot at winning,” Fish said.

“Honestly, the television round felt like any other; I was looking around the table cheering on my friends until suddenly I realized I was three away, then two away. At [that] point I’m literally standing up praying. One number gets called, and it’s not mine; I’m sweating and then BAM! [the] last number gets called and I go absolutely wild,” he said. “Everyone at the table was going absolutely bonkers that I’d won.”

Fish walked away with one of the largest and most coveted grand prizes: a 43-inch Roku TV, Samsung soundbar and a Roku device.

“I feel really good when I see how happy people get [after] they receive their prizes, are surprised by their prizes or the overall intensity and happiness while getting really close to almost winning. Being able to put on an event that can bring people joy when they may have had a really terrible week is why I joined DPC,” said recreation co-director Parker Grisanti.

Grisanti worked closely with his co-director Elizabeth Solenday, Tiffany Kells and faculty supervisor Ashley Kane to organize this semester’s event.

“For each Epic Bingo, it takes months of planning, on top of classes, to prepare,” he said. “The Epic Bingo slides were around 70 slides [long] and took over five hours to fully complete. After we got all of the materials and prizes up to the ballroom to be organized on the night of, then we could start the show!”

Ethan Delp, executive director of DPC, explained that this year’s turnout outpaced recent years due to the pandemic.

“During Covid, we had it virtually. We weren’t even in this ballroom space. We did it over Zoom, and we were just in a classroom in College Hall with the numbers on a shared screen…so just seeing it in person, the energy, the fact that we ran out of food in like, the first minute, goes to show how excited people were,” he said.