Cindy Williams and Eddie Mekka of television’s Laverne & Shirley will be the hosts of a Casino Night fundraiser May 16 for Ayla’s Acres No-Kill Animal Rescue.
The event will take from 7 to 11 p.m. at Treasury on the Plaza, the new event space in the former Wells Fargo building, at 24 Cathedral Place in downtown St. Augustine.
Williams is best known as Shirley Feeney on Laverne & Shirley and as Laurie Henderson in the classic film American Graffiti.
She has also performed in national productions of Grease, Deathtrap and Moon Over Buffalo and was the producer on Steve Martin’s highly-successful Father of the Bride movies.
Along with his iconic role as Carmine “The Big Ragu” Ragusa on Laverne & Shirley, Mekka appeared in many television and film hits including Beaches, A League of Their Own, Moonlighting and The Guiding Light.
A long-time performer in theater, Mekka has appeared in “An Evening with Groucho Marx,” “A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to the Forum,” and since 1993, has been steadily performing the role of Tevye in “Fiddler on the Roof.”
Williams and Mekka recently reunited in the regional production of the Renee Taylor-Joseph bologna comedy play, “It Had to Be You.”
Ayla’s Acres No-Kill Animal Rescue Inc. is a St. Augustine-based non-profit supporting adoption, spay and neutering, and responsible care of animals. Along with education, outreach, adoption and fostering programs, Ayla’s Acres maintains a 45-acre sanctuary where “unadoptable” animals may live out their lives with peace, love and dignity. Ayla’s Acres receives no government funding, relying on private donations of money, supplies and items that are sold through their thrift shop, Ayla’s Attic, located at 300 South Ponce de Leon Boulevard in St. Augustine.
“I am so honored to be a part of this wonderful event that helps Ayla’s Acres to care for and give comfort to all animals in need,” Williams said, regarding her decision to co-host the event with her longtime friend and colleague.
“I am proud to be working for Ayla’s and for such a great cause. I have always had pets. I’m an animal person,” Mekka said. “Animals fill a void in peoples’ lives and we’d be lost without them.”
Casino Night on the Plaza will feature Texas Hold ‘Em poker, slot machines, Blackjack, Roulette, craps and celebrity bingo. “Funny money” winnings will go toward raffles for items donated by local businesses.
Hors d’oeuvres, desserts, beer and wine, soda, and water will be served. The evening will include a featured performance by Mekka. Lewis Turner, an anchor from First Coast News, is also scheduled to participate. Guitarist Harold Fethe will play with vocals by duo Gosia and Ali.
Tickets are $50 and include two drink tickets, one raffle ticket, and $1,500 in funny money (15 bets). Tickets may be purchased at Ayla’s Attic Thrift Shop, 300 South Ponce de Leon Blvd.; or by email at email@example.com. Call 650-520-5201 or go to aylasacres.org.