ST. CLOUD -- Catholic Charities big annual fundraiser is going virtual. The 39th annual Mardi Gras celebration is Saturday.

Executive Director Steve Pareja says while this year's event won't be in-person, they are anticipating a larger attendance than in years past.

We hear a lot of our supporters say they would love to come, but when it happens they are in a warmer state. Now they can stay in those warm places and still be part of the event just by logging on and participating online.

The night includes a silent auction, and music by the Vista Jazz Band, Wheelhouse Trio, and the Fabulous Armadillos.

Pareja says while the fundraiser is free, money raised from the silent auction and Fund a Need program helps support two of their important community programs.

There is still a lot of need in our community, in our Emergency Services and Doman Transitional Housing specifically, that regardless of the pandemic there is still that need. In order for us to continue our mission we need fundraisers like this to help us continue to be able to do that work.

Pareja says the silent auction opens Wednesday and runs through Saturday night. While the event is virtual you're asked to register online in advance.

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