DALLAS (CBS11) – It was a bitter cold Monday night and as temperatures dropped, volunteers at one Dallas church helped the homeless find a warm place to spend the start of the new year.

Oak Lawn United Methodist Church served as a homeless shelter for the first time.

screen shot 2018 01 01 at 10 05 37 pm Dallas Church Opens As Homeless Shelter For First Time

Oak Lawn United Methodist Church (CBS11)

Inside the church, volunteers and church members lent a hand, helping with staffing and cooking.

There were more than 50 people inside and that number was expected to rise through the evening.

Over at Fair Park, thousands flocked to the “Day 1” event that was open to the public. It helped raise money for homeless kids.

aday Dallas Church Opens As Homeless Shelter For First Time

Day 1 event at Fair Park (Yona Gavino – CBS11)

“This is our third year. It’s grown and grown. It’s not surprising… probably a lot of people were tired of being cooped up,” said Karen Hughes, President and CEO of Vogel Alcove.

Vogel Alcove was the nonprofit behind the event.

There were bounce houses, music lessons, crafts and games.

“The money that we raise from this helps our mission. This event raises awareness so people know what we do for homeless children, and the third, to say ‘thank you’ to the community, and ‘Happy New Year’,” said Hughes.

The big finale — a fireworks show.

It’s day one of a year-round mission to spread warmth and kindness to Dallas kids who need it most.

For those needing a warm place to stay during this cold weather, doors at the Oak Lawn Methodist Church will be open from 6 p.m. to 9 a.m.

Doors will also be open on Tuesday and Wednesday if needed.