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Gillioz moves $75K closer to goal

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A second $75,000 donation has been made to the "Save the Gillioz" fund, which would keep the theater and the adjacent Netters Building from being foreclosed upon Dec. 31.

The donor has chosen to remain anonymous, but Dave Roling, President of Springfield Landmarks Preservation Trust, the group that owns the buildings, said the donation was made by an individual on behalf of a business.

The donation matches a $75,000 anonymous pledge made following the Dec. 15 announcement of the trust's fundraising goal.

The two $75,000 donations as well as the initial anonymous $1 million-plus donation - announced by the trust after the Dec. 11 foreclosure notice was served - are pledges, contingent on the trust meeting its community fundraising goal.

As of the morning of Dec. 27, community donors had raised $178,590, more than one-third of the needed $500,000 to keep note holder Guaranty Bank from foreclosing on the Gillioz and the Netters Building, Michael Owens, director of theater operations, said via e-mail.

Community Foundations of the Ozarks is facilitating the donations for the Gillioz fund.

Roling said if the bank forecloses on the buildings, individual donations made to the fund will instead be used for a similar artistic endeavor. He said CFO hasn't decided what entity or entities would receive the money if the Gillioz foreclosure indeed occurs.

The trust began offering an incentive last week for donations of $2,500 or more, which would give free rental of the theater to the donors.

Additionally, Springfield restaurant Big Whiskey's has gotten on board and will donate a portion of its Dec. 28 sales to the fund, according to a news release.

Owens said the trust is in the process of planning other fundraisers.

CFO could potentially offer a low-interest loan to help stop the foreclosure if the trust moves within $200,000 to $250,000 of its goal, according to past coverage.

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