ALTON - Sports Tap will host a fundraiser for the Overnight Warming Locations (OWL) on April 6, 2024.

From 5–9 p.m., attendees can enjoy a chicken dinner, music by Porch Cafe, a silent auction and more at Sports Tap, located at 3812 College Avenue in Alton. Tickets cost $30 and all proceeds will go to the OWL, an organization that provides shelter to unhoused community members when the temperature drops below 20 degrees Fahrenheit.

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“This is our first big fundraising event,” said Tyler Dreith, OWL operations director. “All the proceeds will help benefit the OWL. That will help us get reset for the following season and buy essential things that we need for our site.”

Dreith said the event was organized by a community member who wanted to sponsor a fundraiser on the OWL’s behalf. The OWL recently created a development team to write grants and organize fundraising efforts, and Dreith is excited to watch the organization grow as a result.

“In the past, the OWL has just been able to kind of, by a grassroots campaign, raise money for some of the items and the operational costs that we need at the OWL,” he explained. “We’re getting better organized to help us and help our neighbors. We’re really looking forward to this.”

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He added that the organization is “a little nervous and a little hopeful” about the possibility of the Salvation Army’s New Hope House, a 48-bed shelter that might be coming to Alton.

Dreith noted that the OWL is always looking for people to help, whether through donating or volunteering. He hopes to see many people at the April 6, 2024, fundraiser so they can continue to raise money for next season’s OWL operation costs.

“I think a lot of us can relate to seeing a problem in our community and feeling helpless. But when we look and we see that there’s a need, there’s always a way that we can help out,” he said. “Some people recognize that homelessness is a problem in our community, but they push back against any kind of support. If you do see a need, we want you to be a part of this solution. We want to hear your concerns, but if we all work together, it's just beautiful what we can do in our community when we’re all working together and pooling our resources.”

Tickets will be available at the door, or you can purchase tickets online. Click here for information about the event or visit the OWL’s official Facebook page to learn more about the organization.

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