When the game reached North America in 1929, it became known as 'Beano'. It was first played at a carnival near Atlanta, Georgia. New York toy salesman Edwin S. Lowe renamed it 'Bingo' after he overheard someone accidentally yell 'Bingo' instead of 'Beano'. He hired a Columbia University math professor, Carl Leffler, to help him increase the number of combinations in bingo cards. By 1930, Leffler had invented 6,000 different bingo cards. (It is said that Leffler then went insane.)
A Catholic priest from Pennsylvania approached Lowe about using bingo as a means of raising church funds. When bingo started being played in churches it became increasingly popular. By 1934, an estimated 10,000 bingo games were played weekly, and today more than $90 million dollars are spent on bingo each week in North America alone.
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