Lowcountry Aids Services: Gay Bingo
CHARLESTON, SC (CJ JACKSON, WTAT-TV) — There is no straight line about this upcoming bingo night. It comes with a mix of 70’s and drag. Here to tell us all about the fun for a good cause is Jason Kirk.
CJ JACKSON: So this bingo game is not grandma’s bingo! What can people expect?
JASON KIRK: You are going to have a drag queen as an emcee and host, doing some performances. We have a 70’s disco theme and we are playing for prizes, and ticket sales go toward supporting the services and programs of Lowcountry Aids Services.
CJ JACKSON: So talk about what is going on this week?
JASON KIRK: So this is the Tuesday night event during Charleston Pride. Events start this Saturday, August 9th and go through next Saturday, August 16th, and it all culminates in a big parade and post-parade festival. So all week long there is something to do. We are very happy to partner with Charleston Pride and be the Tuesday event.
We are happy to that is rightner with charleston pride and do the event.
CJ JACKSON: So are people expected to dress up? Do they need to wear their 70s garb to go?
JASON KIRK: Well, we won’t kick you out the door if you are not dressed up. But we do encourage people to dress up. Infact, there may be a few prizes for some of the best dressed groups or individuals. Whether it is roller blades coming in the door or people in bell bottoms and glittery costumes right out of Saturday Night Fever, we want to see everyone have a great time. There will be music through the night which is all going to be 70s music, so everyone will be getting into the groove.
CJ JACKSON: What other events that are going on this week that are worth mentioning?
JASON KIRK: Definitely the parade downtown on Saturday, and the post-parade a festival at Brittlebank Park. In fact, we will be at the festival as well. We will be going free HIV testing all day long. We encourage folks to stop by and get an HIV test and have a great time and see some performances. Tiffany will be there! So we’ve got 70’s and 80’s mixed up in this whole week.
CJ JACKSON: So it is a fun bingo night, but it is also an important message to get across to people.
JASON KIRK: We really want to make people aware that the hiv-aids epidemic has not gone away. It gets a lot less attention than it once did in the 80’s and 90’s. but it is still affecting many people. There are over 2,500 in the Lowcountry area who are living with hiv or aids right how. Last year we saw almost a 200% increase in new HIV infections through our testing. We tested over 1,700 people and it was a 200% increase year-over-year. We haven’t seen that many in over five years.
CJ JACKSON: How much are tickets and where can people purchase them for Bingo night?
JASON KIRK: We are sold out of the VIP but we still have regular tickets which are $25 and you can purchase them at CharlestonGayBingo.org.