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Cross of Peace honors service of outgoing director

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MAKANDA, IL (WSIL) -- Dozens took part in an open house Sunday afternoon at Bald Knob Cross of Peace to honor outgoing Executive Director Teresa Gilbert, who is retiring from the position after six years of service

Past and present board members spoke on her leadership, which placed the non-profit on a "firm foundation" as its future continues to evolve.

Gilbert says the Cross is a special place where life-long friends are made, and she now looks forward to watching what it offers next.

"I feel really excited about passing the torch, I feel like, Bald Knob Cross is in a great place, systematically and structurally and there's some exciting plans that I think will be announced in the near future," says Gilbert. "It's just a really special day to be celebrating with some special people and for such a special reason."

Gilbert is the organization's first executive director. Hired in 2015, she is credited for building a team of volunteers and developing regional support to help keep the Cross open.

Bald Knob is expanding its events such as the recent addition of the Blessing of the Jeeps, which is only in its third year.

Next week, May 23 starting at 8 in the morning, the Cross hosts the Blessing of the Bikes. Sponsored by the Christian Motorcycle Association, it draws thousands of motorcycle enthusiasts each year.