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ARCOLA -- Green Mill Village is celebrating the recent debut of the third season at the Green Mill Village Theatre and the upcoming reopening of Carriage Crossing Senior Living.

This property is also home to a Best Western Plus Green Mill Village Hotel and Suites & Convention Center. The hotel, which opened in 2012, provides lodging and banquet center services for Arcola area residents and for those visiting the Amish community here and other local destinations.

Regarding the theater, the 2017 season recently began with a production of "Murder at Bunny & Clyde's" that will continue through April 19. Other upcoming productions will include "Adam & Eve Go to Marriage Counseling," May 10-July 26, and "Slay it Again Sam," Sept. 6-Oct. 25. This season is being presented in a dinner theater format featuring Amish-style foods.

Cassie Yoder, marketing and development director for Green Mill Village, said the theater opened in 2015 with the goal of providing an evening activity for guests at the Best Western and other visitors to the area.

Yoder said the Green Mill Village Theatre presents family friendly entertainment, with an emphasis on the lighthearted mysteries and Christian comedies that have proven to be popular with audiences there.

The theater is located inside the Best Western. Yoder said the hotel offers 68 guest suites, a complementary hot breakfast, an indoor pool, and other amenities, as well as banquet and conference space. She said this facility has hosted many tour bus groups and gatherings.

"The hotel seems to be a very good launching point for excursions in the area," Yoder said, adding that the Amish community draws visitors during every season. "Year round, we have been able to keep visitors here to shop, dine and really experience what our local business partners have to offer."

Yoder said Arcola area residents also utilize the hotel to provide lodging for their guests and a venue for their parties, receptions, weddings, and other special events.

The Best Western equips its rooms and other spaces with locally manufactured furniture from Simply Amish. Yoder said guests can often turn over their furniture and see the signatures of the craftsman who built each piece.

In addition, Yoder said the hallways of the Best Western are decorated with local photographer Richard Herschberger's images of the Amish community and the hotel's small shop is stocked with local jams and jellies. She said this is part of Green Mill's goal of promoting the community and its heritage.

"That was really important to us to build a hotel that tells a story," Yoder said.

Green Mill Village was developed by AF Holding Co. of Sullivan. Yoder said the local owners see firsthand how Green Mill Village can have a positive impact on the economy and they want to follow practices that further the economic sustainability of local businesses.

Another important component of Green Mill Village is Carriage Crossing Senior Living. Yoder said Carriage Crossing has two components -- an assisted living facility and a memory care facility, totaling 42 units.

Carriage Crossing offers 24-hour nursing care that can be adjusted to meet the changing health needs of residents, Yoder said. This enables the residents there to remain in their homes as their life situations change, she said.

Yoder added that Carriage Crossing residents and their guests frequently utilize the adjacent Best Western and the Green Mill Village Theatre.

The Carriage Crossing in Arcola was damaged by a fire in June and the residents were relocated to the Carriage Crossing location in Champaign, Yoder said. She added that many of the nurses from the Arcola site relocated with the residents to continue serving them.

Yoder said Carriage Crossing in Arcola is preparing to reopen in the next couple of weeks. She thanked the community for its support during this time period after the fire.

"The community has helped us tremendously," Yoder said.

Green Mill Village is located southeast of the intersection of Interstate 57 and Illinois Route 133 in Arcola. More information is available by going online to http://www.gmvdevelopment.com/ or contacting Yoder at 217-254-4012.

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