By Brian Arola
MANKATO — As its programming returns to pre-pandemic levels, LEEP is on the lookout for a new homebase.
The nonprofit, also known as Leisure Education for Exceptional People, provides recreation and social opportunities for people with developmental and intellectual disabilities. LEEP, along with many other local nonprofits, had to scale down activities after the COVID-19 pandemic started.
An auction of LEEP’s building on Fourth Street led to its search for a more accessible replacement. The online auction on a site for commercial property sales will end Thursday.
LEEP’s move-out timing will depend on how the auction goes and when any sale closes.
“We want to make sure we’re welcoming to everybody so everyone can walk or roll in,” said Lisa Hoffman Wojcik, LEEP executive director.
The service club Sertoma transferred ownership of its 929 N. 4th St. building to LEEP in 2007. Along with accessibility issues, storm damage on the building rendered the basement unusable.
LEEP’s move has been in the works for a while, with Hoffman Wojcik calling the plan a moving target depending on when a desirable location becomes available.
Along with accessibility into the new homebase, parking will need to accommodate client needs.
LEEP will continue its work through any move, said Hoffman Wojcik, including its LEEP Legends fundraiser on July 13 at ISG Field. The nonprofit partners with the Mankato MoonDogs on the event.
This year will also include LEEP’s first full slate of Special Olympics programming since the pandemic began.
“We’re getting back into our regular offerings, and that feels really good,” Hoffman Wojcik said.
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By Brian Arola