TAMPA, Fla. - When Winn Dixie remodeled its only South Tampa location, managers saw the opportunity to reintroduce the store to its community.
They didn't realize the lasting power their idea would hold.
"We thought bingo would be a really nice way to cater to our local seniors," said Winn Dixie Regional Vice President Joey Medina.
They started holding games and it took off.
Now, twice a month, about 40 seniors show up at the Winn Dixie on Swann Avenue, just off South Howard.
"For seniors citizens, it's a great place because we keep our minds fresh and we meet wonderful people," said customer Maria Avellai.
Cindy Mason used to work at Winn Dixie. She made a vow: once she retired, she would play.
"Every time these ladies would come through I said, 'I have to play bingo when I retire' and I did and I'm so glad. I enjoy it very much," she said.
Players win gift cards and prizes, but most of all, they gain friendships.
"We enjoy being able to give back and this is a way that we can host these types of events and give back to our local seniors," said Medina.