Rotterdam bingo hall at ViaPort inching closer to opening

Wide shot of a room with seats with a foreground sign reading Bingo! Coming Soon!

New BINGO hall at ViaPort Rotterdam in Rotterdam in December.

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ROTTERDAM — Bingo at the ViaPort shopping mall is inching closer to reality.

The Rotterdam Town Board this past week voted unanimously to approve a necessary hardship application to a handful of organizations seeking to host bingo games at a portion of the old Kmart space at the West Campbell Road shopping mall.

Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons, Cyprus Shriners and its subsidiary the Schenectady Shrine Club, are all planning to host bingo games at the space as a means of fundraising. All three organizations under state law were required to prove they were experiencing a hardship in order to host bingo games because their primary place of business is outside of Rotterdam.

The state’s Gaming Commission must give the three organizations final approval before games can begin.

The Beukendaal Temple Association of Scotia will operate the bingo hall. The organization received the necessary license from the state’s Gaming Commission last year to operate the facility along with Planning Commission approvals to retrofit the 20,000-square-foot bingo hall.

It’s unclear when the first bingo games will be held. The Beukendaal Temple Association could not be reached and the Gaming Commission did not return a request seeking comment Tuesday.

During a public hearing earlier this year, representatives from Bishop Gibbons and Cyprus Shriners told Town Board members that hosting weekly bingo games is an essential revenue-driver for their respected organizations and have been searching for a place to host games since the pandemic shut down their previous operation.

The organizations used to hold games at the Schenectady Bingo Palace on State Street, but the facility was closed to mitigate the spread of the virus and has since been sold.

Around 200 individuals are expected to participate in each bingo game when operations begin.

Contact reporter Chad Arnold at: [email protected] or by calling 518-395-3120.

Categories: News, News, Rotterdam, Schenectady County


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