By: Sheryl Sowell | Category: In Our Communities | Issue: August 2011
Members of the ESA Gamma Pi Chapter in Inola (L to R): (Back row) Karla Applegate, President Bobbi Martin, Kay Kirkes, (Front row) Gertrude Riddle, Janie Stevens and Carol Applegate.
A fun, giving group of ladies in Inola are planning an exciting Bunco party to raise money for local organizations. The Epsilon Sigma Alpha (ESA) Gamma Pi Chapter is presenting its 4th annual Bunco Tournament on Saturday, August 27 at 4 p.m. at the Inola Roundup Club. Radio personality Carly Rush will return as the celebrity player.
The Gamma Pi ladies say that if you haven’t been to the tournament before, you must mark it on your calendar to attend this year. “We have an absolute ball!” says member Janie Stevens. “Everyone who participates is guaranteed to have a wonderful time. Players get so excited and rambunctious, laughing and shouting ‘Bunco!’”
One of the best things about the tournament is that anyone can play the game, whether you’re 9 years old or 90. It’s fast-paced yet easy to learn, and chances are you’re going to get hooked. Bunco is a social dice game with four sets. All players in the tournament receive a complimentary welcome bag with the rules and regulations and a variety of goodies, including a concession ticket worth a sandwich plate. Other concessions, including desserts, will be available for sale, and all the food is homemade by Gamma Pi members. If you would like to advertise your business by donating items for the goodie bags, you may do so for a fee of $20. Call Janie at (918) 543-6014 to learn more.
Tons of door prizes will be given away, so you’ll have a great chance of leaving with something extra, along with your happy memories. At last year’s event, gift baskets were awarded to the most enthusiastic player, oldest player, person who traveled farthest, first Bunco roll, player who had been married the longest to the same person, the oldest graduate from Inola High School, the player with the most great-grandchildren, and the last player to Bunco. Prizes were also awarded to the player with the most wins, most Buncos, most games lost, and no wins.
Gertrude Riddle, a 26-year member of ESA, is in charge of the prizes, and the other ladies applaud her talent for creating fantastic gift baskets. “She makes the cutest baskets from the huge variety of items donated by group members and local individuals and businesses,” says member Karla Applegate. Each basket has a theme, such as wine, patio and garden items, movies and popcorn, Christmas, hot cocoa and tea, and picnic goodies.
A raffle will also take place, with the chance to win a one-night stay at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Tulsa and dinner for two at McGill’s. Raffle tickets are $1 each or six for $5. Bring one or more non-perishable food items for the Inola Ministry House and Food Bank, and for each item you bring, you’ll receive a ticket for the chance to win a gift basket filled by ESA members.
Local vendors will be set up during the tournament and intermission. A few of the vendors already signed up will be selling jewelry, purses, home décor items, and embroidery.
Early registration for the Bunco Tournament is $12.50 per person, or $15 at the door. Proceeds from the tournament will go to the Inola Volunteer Fire Department and for Inola Middle School projects.
ESA is a philanthropic organization whose mission is to serve and support the community with passion, concern and fellowship. The Gamma Pi Chapter hosts an annual Easter egg hunt for elementary students, Christmas home tour, bingo tournament, twice-yearly patio sales and more. Each of their events raises money that goes directly towards assisting others. They help people in need pay their utility bills, donate school supplies to teachers, sponsor three students who attend Parkview School for the Blind each year, raise funds for the Special Olympics and St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, and much more.
The ESA Gamma Pi Bunco Tournament is August 27 at 4p.m. at the Inola Roundup Club, located off Highway 412 on 4230 Road. Call Kay Kirkes at (918) 637-0595 to pre-register, or you can mail your check to Gamma Pi, P.O. Box 183, Inola, OK 74036.
Sheryl Sowell was born and raised in Tulsa, OK. She graduated from Will Rogers High School and received her Bachelor of Arts in English from Northeastern State University in 2007. She has worked for Value News as editor, writer and advertising copywriter since 2008. She enjoys meeting and interviewing people for Value News articles, learning about their backgrounds, and helping to promote their businesses and local events. In her free time, she enjoys reading, trying new recipes and crafts from Pinterest, attending concerts and sporting events, and spending time with family and friends. Sheryl lives in Tulsa with her fiancé Paul, their daughter Scarlett, and their two dogs, Gunner and Boo.