Oklahoma has long been synonymous with Bingo. This is because Indian tribes of Oklahoma have run bingo games for generations. Patrons from all surrounding states load themselves into cars and travel to Oklahoma to play bingo on the weekends. Growing up in a small town just south of the Red River, I knew a group that would rent a bus to go to Chocktaw bingo every Friday night.
The Indian Gaming Regulatorty Act of 1988 followed a landmark ruling by the United States Supreme Court the year before. Since then, 23 of the 39 Indian tribes of Oklahoma have opened playrooms. The Chickasaw were the first Oklahoma Indian tribe to take advantage of the gaming laws, and today they run ten casinos. Bingo was the game on which these casinos were founded. Electronic games like slot machines have not been allowed because they are considered to contribute to gambling addiction more than bingo.
Tulsa, Oklahoma is synonymous with the term Bingo Lounge. Bingo charity sites around this area mean you can find a bingo game any time of the day. The Oklahoma Charity Games Act, passed in the early 90's, ensured that bingo would be a huge money for the state. The act has also covered pulltab or breakopen tickets, but that's not our concern here.
In 1993, charity gaming licenses were (strangely) transferred from the Oklahoma Tax Commission to the Alcohol Beverage Control Board, which regulates bingo games in Oklahoma. nowadays. There are more than 860 non-profit bingo operators in the state now. Most of them are charitable organizations of churches and veterans.
In recent years, the law of Oklahoma has changed to allow for large Indian gambling casinos. You will now find Indian casinos with slot machines, video poker tables and blackjack. Craps and roulette are not legal yet in Indian casinos, but it's only a matter of time. No one can say what other games in the bingo houses will do for the popularity of bingo. I guess that bingo will keep its popularity, because Bingo has maintained a niche for more than eight decades. It's more than just for grandmothers.