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      Beardstown Santa needs new workshop

      Work goes on year round at Santa's Workshop to get toys ready for Christmas day.

      But without a workshop, there are no toys.

      After retiring in 2007 Jack Bailey opened a shop called Santa's Workshop, now located in Beardstown.

      He takes donated toys, new and old, repairs the ones that need it and gives them to families in need.

      Now Bailey is without a workshop.

      More than half the toys currently in Santa's Workshop will have to be thrown out because of leaks from above apartments.

      Bailey said, "Finally it flooded the floor and that has turned to mold. Most everything in here now is basically destroyed because of mold."

      In his first year, Jack Bailey and Santa's Workshop provided toys to about 470 underprivileged children. Last year, more than 2,000 children received toys.

      Bailey said, "Right now I have over 300 children for Christmas this year already. I have no place to go."

      Bailey cannot accept any more toys in his current shop because of the mold. He hopes he can salvage about 40% of the toys he already has.

      Bailey said, "I talked to the board of health and there's some things that I can take and wash with water and bleach."

      After that he still needs somewhere to take them.

      What can people do to help you out?

      Bailey said, "Find me a place to set up. I need a place, I need a home for Santa's Workshop. Open their hearts to children."

      Bailey has opened a wood shop where he is trying to do more work building and repairing toys. But he lacks funds and toys and fears one thing.

      Bailey said, "Children not having Christmas."

      If you want to help Jack Bailey and Santa's Workshop in any way you can contact him at 217-491-6931 or 217-491-3639.