Arcade Converted To Winter Homeless Shelter

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(Sacramento, CA)
Monday, October 30, 2006

Volunteers like John Nicholson with Standard Pacific Home are putting the finishing touches on the new shelter. 

"In here painting and it’s just bringing back some of those old memories of what was here but pretty excited about what’s going to be here now."

This building at Cal Expo used to be Paradise Island – an arcade with bumper cars and laser tag that closed about a year and a half ago. Now it has newly built dorm rooms and lounges to accommodate 154 men, women and children. Sacramento County leases the shelter property from Cal Expo.

Leo McFarland with Volunteers of America, which operates the shelter, says having a permanent building will save them money because they won’t have to rent trailers anymore and they may also be able to keep the shelter open longer.    

"For instance last year the trailers had to be removed at a certain date because of other uses by the fair and when that happened, even though we had rain storms for three weeks past, we had no shelter for people."

The winter shelter opens on November 21st.