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PADS 12/28/17

Shown is the PADS building under construction in Mattoon on Thursday.

KEVIN KILHOFFER, JOURNAL GAZETTE & TIMES-COURIER

MATTOON -- Glo Bingo and murder mystery theater fundraisers have been scheduled next month to help Mattoon Area PADS, which plans to open its new homeless shelter and community kitchen in the spring.

The Mattoon Moose Lodge is set to sponsor the Glo Bingo games at 7 p.m. Jan. 20 at its lodge, 1212 Broadway Ave., with the doors opening at 6 p.m. Entry is $20 in advance and $25 at the door for these illuminated games, described as "This is not your grandma's bingo!" The price includes six cards for 10 games, a Glo hat and a Glo dabber, plus $5 per additional six bingo cards. Advance tickets are available at the lodge or PADS, 2017 Broadway Ave.

Central Illinois State Company, known as CISCo, then plans to present its "Mafia Murders" mystery theater production at 7 p.m. Jan. 26-27 at the Mattoon Moose lodge, with the doors opening at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are available for $25 in advance and $35 at the door. The event also will offer hors d'oeuvres and a cash bar.

PADS Executive Director Michael Stopka said this will be CISCo's second annual murder mystery theater benefit for the shelter. He said they held one performance last year.

"We had a good turnout last year and we thought two nights would draw in more people. They will be able to choose whichever night would be better for them," Stopka said, noting that the Moose Lodge hosted last year's performance too. "We are happy to work with the Moose. They are always more than willing for us to use their facility. They have been a good partner. We are grateful for that."

Stopka said PADS has nearly reached its fundraising goal for equipping and furnishing the new homeless shelter and community kitchen building that is under construction at 1812 Western Ave., just south of City Hall. He said the proceeds of benefits that are not being scheduled will help fund day-to-day operations at PADS.

The new building has been enclosed and the construction work has shifted to the interior of this structure for the winter, Stopka said. PADS hopes to move into the new building sometime this spring and this nonprofit organization is making plans for operating this facility and for staffing it with the help of volunteers, he said.

More information about PADS and the upcoming fundraisers is available by calling the shelter at 217-234-7237 or by going online to https://www.facebook.com/Mattoon-Area-PADS.

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