Casino Royale fundraiser for museum a safe bet

The Mount Airy News
Casino Royale fundraiser for museum a safe bet

Casino Royale Night at the Museum will feature all the sights and sounds of a regular casino, but with no real money at stake. Any organization or business in the area that would like to sponsor one of the casino table should contact museum director Matt Edwards.

Sometimes you must spend a little to get a lot and the Mount Airy Museum of Regional History has an upcoming event allowing the public to do just that.

What has been described as the chance to make a generational investment in this community is being cleverly disguised with some glitz and glam with a dash of roulette at the 2022 Casino Royale to be held at the museum on Saturday, September 17, from 6:30 – 10:30 p.m.

Executive Director Matt Edwards is excited for the upcoming event that he says is their single largest fundraiser annually. The casino night brings in around 12% of their total operating budget for the year and is the only event that puts dollars directly into the operating budget.

Having one big casino night fundraiser is a winner in his book as it helps him with the ease of planning the event, but also combats donor fatigue, something to which any fundraiser can attest is a real thing. Keeping money flowing into the museum from sources beyond tickets at the door is essential for its continuing growth.

“This is the big annual fundraising event of the year for the museum. All the sponsorships and money raised goes to museum,” board member Calvin Vaughn said. “We are currently in process of updating, expanding and building new exhibits that will benefit not only the community now, but the next generation.”

Games and adult libations will be found in the courtyard of the museum while dinner service and opportunities to enjoy the museum and its exhibits await players for whom Lady Luck went home to tuck the kids in.

This is the chance for anyone who has wanted to try their hand at games of skill, chance, and luck with the confidence that as Edwards said, “Its play money. Once people get over that and realize it’s all for fun – it makes it more fun, and the wagers get more interesting.”

What’s more he said it is a learning opportunity for people to really learn how a game like craps works, from the professionals who are running the table side of things. Caesar’s Palace is not going to teach people how to gamble, Edwards offered.

Entry is $100 which gets one ticket for the events and an entry in Drawdown which Edwards said was the raffle’s cousin. He said instead of drawing one winner, they are drawing 299 losers from the fixed number of entries. A package of two event tickets with one Drawdown entry will cost $125.

All the hullabaloo is well worth it with a meaty $5,000 cash prize going to the winner. Consolation cash prizes will be found during the Drawdown with the first number drawn confirmed to be among consolation winners.

Players do not have to be present to win the Drawdown only the ticket needs to be present. Edwards said if you plan to attend a football game that night or you’re going to sit under the lights for short track racing in Bristol to get a ticket all the same and send it to Casino Royale in your stead.

Wheeling and dealing may happen during the drawdown when the last five standing will have a choice to end the game and pool the winning between them. Or the ante may be upped again with one of the last standing players can make offers to buy remaining drawdown tickets from other players. That is high level maneuvering on a night meant to be fun and to fund the future of one of the cultural gems of this area.

Casino Royale was a 1920’s theme last year and it is a 1960’s theme this year, Edwards said that skinny suits and thin ties may be the dress code for some – but is not required. Dress for comfort and luck – if that is such a thing.

Businesses still have time to get involved and be a sponsor for one of the tables. Sponsorships are $500 and include praise, recognition, two event tickets and a Drawdown entry. Contact Matt Edwards at 336-

After missing a couple casino night in recent years due to some fuzzy law changes that made non-profit casino nights as these legally nebulous and the pandemic, getting back down to the business of having fun in welcome for Edwards and staff.

Fun and games will await players, but it is their long-term gift back to the museum and Surry County that is really no gamble at all. As Vaughn said, “With over twenty-five thousand artifacts, we have captured our history of buildings, events and individuals.”

“Thousands of school kids, hundreds of families, and more come and with what is being built, expanded, and improved upon it is a generational investment benefiting our kids and grandkids.”