Early in 1987, the St. Cloud Times published an extensive article on the charitable gambling operation called The Bingo Emporium Bingo Hall in St. Cloud, Minnesota. After reading the article, the Administrator of St. Benedict’s Center, a long-term care facility in St. Cloud, met with the management of The Bingo Emporium Bingo Hall to explore the possibility of the Nursing Center sharing in the proceeds or opening its own bingo hall operation.
Following further research, it was decided that the best opportunity for raising charitable gambling funds would be to open a bingo hall in the Twin Cities metropolitan area. St. Benedict’s Center contacted St. Therese Home, a long-term care center in the northern suburbs of the Twin Cities, to see if they would be interested in being a partner in a Twin City Bingo Hall operation.
After receiving approval from the organizations’ Boards of Directors, a search was conducted for a location with adequate parking, suffiicient square footage, convenient location and other characteristics necessary for its success. A lease was signed for a location in Brooklyn Park, and upon acquiring the necessary approvals, work began to remodel a 9,000 square foot location on State Hwy 81 just north of Interstate Highway 694.
Carousel Bingo opened its doors for charitable gambling February 5th, 1988, in what was the old Cub Building. Once remodeled, the space no longer resembled a hollow, cavernous warehouse filled with groceries. New carpet, ceilings, freshly painted walls, brand-spanking-new bingo machines, and bowtied, suspendered and arm-banded bingo workers thrilled, assisted, and paid out winnings to thousands of patrons.