“What have I done?” That’s the thought I get whenever I agree to drag our big-ass Chicken Poo Bingo board -with birds- to an event. To be fair, it’s work gathering everything from poultry to paper towels (used to “clear the board”) into the truck. Then driving to the location, knowing it’s an afternoon of non-stop talking / carnival barking ahead of us.
The good news is that we’re getting better. At least we got smart enough to type out a Google Doc to remind us of all there is to bring and how to play this asinine game we basically made up. I was inspired by – of course – the internet by something similar played at a bar in Texas. The name of the bar game was more colorful than ours.
So, What is Chicken Poo Bingo?
This is a legit question.
Well, it’s basically what you’re thinking but rather than letters on a board, we have numbers. We place chickens (stuffed with treats and offered lots of water) onto the fenced-in board. These pasture-raised beauties walk around on a painted sheet of plywood – likely confused as to how the heck they got from the field to here. Players lean in to encourage and”Chicken Whisper” birds to let loose on the square with their number on it. Then they win a prie.
Why Chicken Poo Bingo?
Well, it’s just silly and an opportunity to connect with folks.
Ideally, while waiting for a number 2 to land on any numeral, we’d talk to folks about the benefits of pastured poultry over other systems. But it’s hard to be heard over all that chanting of “Poo! Poo! Poo!”
Sometimes, I manage to get in that it’s better for water quality as the poo on the farm is spread over fields, keeping nitrogen concentrations lower.
Or I might quickly explain that pasture-raised is the only system that keeps chickens on fresh fields where they’ll eat a varied diet of bugs, seeds, clovers, and whatever mouse hopped into the paddock.
It’s harder to get into our positive economic impact by sourcing and selling locally — how we’ve managed to seriously help revitalize some rural places while putting some great eggs on the shelves.
I mean, people are there to have fun. And it *is* FUN. Folks – especially kids –are busy cawing, clucking, singing and chanting encouragement for a chicken to poo. Multi-tasking is hard. I usually start out strong on the education side and end up just grinning at the delight of the players and onlookers.
So, you might be asking, will folks remember all those good reasons to seek out pasture-raised, local eggs? Nah. Will our little company sell more cartons? I hardly doubt it.
But we’ve likely helped create some memories for families at the Harvest Festival or whatever event we’re at. People love the birds and usually, we raise a bit of cash for the Sustainable Farmers’ Association, too.
So, all in all, it’s probably worth losing my voice as I shout it loud and proud, “AND… we have a BINGOOOO!”