Every Monday evening, a bingo fundraiser is held at the East Dover First Aid Squad Building located on Garfield Avenue in Toms River. The bingo game is operated by the parents association of the Toms River High School East Marching Raiders. The revenues from these bingo nights are channeled towards the band's scholarships and other expenses, like the cleaning and maintenance of the uniforms during the marching season and the design of their field show.
As the Toms River High School East's Holiday Winds Ensemble, which is part of the Marching Raiders Band, performed for the bingo customers at the squad building, Tony Tafrow, the band director, said that the performance went well. Sharon Hartwell, President of the Marching Raider Brigade, the Band Parent Association, said that if they did not hold the bingo games, she doesn't know how they would cover the band's expenses.
Unlike most schools where the students or their parents pay to cover the cost of band uniforms, the only cost that the students have to pay at Toms River High School East is $5, which is paid to the association for insurance. All of the other expenses are paid with money raised at the bingo games. Tafrow added that bingo night was usually held on Friday, but they changed it to Monday evenings, around 7:30 p.m.
According to Tafrow, the band usually had problems when it renting trucks due to the expense, as well as the size of the trucks which were sometimes too small for all of their things. However, thanks to the bingo proceeds, the band was able to buy a 24 foot box truck for all of their equipment almost 2 years ago.
Due to the Holiday Season, there will not be any bingo games for the next two weeks.
Monday, January 29, 2007