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Annual Cow Chip Bingo Supports Lions’ Scholarship

OSWEGO, NY – The Oswego Lions Club let the chips fall where they may Saturday.

Cow Chip Bingo winner Sheena Gates, center, receives her winnings from Oswego Lions member Karen Hammond, right. At left is Oswego Lions member Beverly Spuhler.
Cow Chip Bingo winner Sheena Gates, center, receives her winnings from Oswego Lions member Karen Hammond, right. At left is Oswego Lions member Beverly Spuhler.

The Lions Club held its fifth annual Kites over Fort Ontario, Child Safety Day with “Cow Chip Bingo” outside the historic site.

The “Cow Chip Bingo” took place on a huge area that was surveyed and sectioned off into hundreds of square yard plots.

“Deeds” were sold for $10 for each square yard plot. The owner of the plot that was fertilized won $1,000.

The first couple of years the guest of honor apparently was too bashful to relive itself with dozens of people watching. The Lions had to resort to a drawing to determine the winner.

This year, “Daisy” ambled around her temporary pasture for two hours and 48 minutes before deciding to make someone a winner.

The proceeds from the “Cow Chip Bingo” will be used to support an annual scholarship in the memory of Harold “H” Dowd who passed away in September 2005.

“H” was a member of the Fulton Lions Club who was instrumental in keeping the Oswego Lions Club going when it was on the verge of disbanding in 1996.

Grace Wing watches as her kite soars high into the sky outside of historic Fort Ontario.
Grace Wing watches as her kite soars high into the sky outside of historic Fort Ontario.

This year’s bingo winner was Sheena Gates.

When Lions member Karen Hammond called her with the good news, she said “Karen, tell me you’re calling to tell me I won a thousand dollars.”

When Hammond said yes, Gates exclaimed, “You just made my freakin’ day!”

It actually took a little prodding by Hammond to get her former co-worker to buy a “deed.” Now Gates says she’s glad she did.

Gates said the funds will help pay for some new tires and some clothes for the new job she just got.

The Child Safety Day portion of the program featured child fingerprinting and photographing courtesy of the Oswego County Sheriff’s Department, bicycle safety helmets from the Lions and other activities.

Dillon Harvey was one of the scores of youngsters who received a helmet and had it properly fitted, courtesy of the Oswego Lions Club.
Dillon Harvey was one of the scores of youngsters who received a helmet and had it properly fitted, courtesy of the Oswego Lions Club.

Ontario Winds, in cooperation with the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, conducted the annual “Kites Over Fort Ontario” event.

Kite exhibitions, refreshments, kite making, games, and candy drops highlighted the event.

Grace Wing said she was having fun flying the kite she made at the nearby Ontario Winds tent.

“Mine is flying the highest,” she pointed out.

Zoe Clark takes part in the bols (balloon) race. She placed second in the event. “It was really fun, but it was hard to pull,” the 10-year-old exclaimed.
Zoe Clark takes part in the bols (balloon) race. She placed second in the event. “It was really fun, but it was hard to pull,” the 10-year-old exclaimed.

She adorned her creation with a huge G and a cat, so she would be able to tell her kite apart from the dozens of others flying in the wind.

“We’re going to include this in her school project (what I did this summer),” her mother said. “She has also gone fishing and kayaking.”

Grace was one of the more than 75 children, young and old, who made their own kites. Dozens more brought heir own kites.

“It’s a beautiful day. We have a great turnout,” said Oswego Lions Club VP Barb Bateman. “The kids are having a good time.”

Keno greets Daisy the cow. Keno is in training to become a service dog for the blind.
Keno greets Daisy the cow. Keno is in training to become a service dog for the blind.

Marilyn Boyzuick of Ontario Winds echoed her sentiments.

“The children have made more than 75 kites of their own. They’re flying them all over the place. It’s great,” she said. “This is probably one of the best events we’ve had.”

The Lions went through several dozen safety helmets and the sheriff’s department created probably as many Child Safe ID cards.

Anyone interested in becoming a member or learning more about the Oswego Lions Club should contact Karen Hammond, membership chair, at 598-2471.