Game’s popularity forcing courier to deliver cards in secret, says Manitoba’s Kinsmen Jackpot Bingo

The organization behind a popular TV bingo game in Manitoba says it has been so besieged by players desperate to get their hands on bingo cards that it’s had to start delivering them to stores in secret and is now considering a limit on the number of cards available.

In a Facebook post that has since been removed, Kinsmen Jackpot Bingo claimed on Tuesday that its delivery driver is being put in danger by people trying to get their hands on bingo cards.

“I will no longer post a list of stores in Winnipeg that are receiving deliveries,” the post read.

“We have hordes of people driving dangerously FOLLOWING our courier driver like paparazzi and putting him in danger. This is not cool at all.

“I can no longer share information here. I have directed our courier to come back to our office, and we will continue deliveries secretly at a later time.”

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READ MORE: Largest Kinsmen Jackpot Bingo pot ever on hold due to ‘missing ball’

Kinsmen Jackpot Bingo declined a request for an interview on Tuesday.

The weekly game’s jackpot currently sits at a record-breaking $640,000 and will continue to grow before the draw on Saturday. In order to play Kinsmen Jackpot Bingo, participants purchase cards at local stores, watch the draw on TV and play along at home for a chance to win.

680 CJOB part-time show host Kathy Kennedy also hosts the weekly Kinsmen Jackpot Bingo draw.

Bingo cards are sold out in many stores across Winnipeg. On Wednesday morning, a lineup of more than 100 people formed at the Russell, Man., IGA as people waited for the grocery store to open at 8 a.m. to buy the cards, an employee told 680CJOB.

In a social media post on Wednesday morning, Kinsmen said scalping the cards has been a prevalent problem.

“I didn’t want to give any more people the idea of doing it, but it seemed to be so prevalent already,” the post read.

READ MORE: Kinsmen Jackpot Bingo announces new changes to game after ball error

The organization says it will be talking to Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries (MLL) on Wednesday about limiting the bingo cards in the same way concert tickets are limited to help prevent scalping.

Global News has reached out to MLL for comment.

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Mystery of missing ball leaves largest Kinsmen Jackpot Bingo pot ever in question
Mystery of missing ball leaves largest Kinsmen Jackpot Bingo pot ever in question

Carol Fortin, who was coming out of Brathwaite’s Pharmacy on Ness Avenue on Tuesday night, said she went in looking for bingo cards.

“This was my second stop, but they have a sign posted [that they’re sold out],” she said. “I’ve called a couple places, but some of them aren’t answering the phone.

“I’ll keep driving.”

Inside, the pharmacy confirmed the cards were sold out and said the business has been posting on social media to let customers know.

— With files from Lauren McNabb

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