ALTON - For three years, Old Bakery Beer Company sales representative Caleb Lewis has been working to make the world a better place during the holiday season.
This Friday, Dec. 8, will be the third incarnation of Tunes for Toys, an event with an entry fee of either $10 or an unopened children's toys. That entry fee will allow someone to have a night of music, free food and one free drink on Lewis. The toys and fee will go directly to Riverbend Family Ministries, which provides a free shopping day to children and their parents using an allotment of tickets, Lewis said.
Music this year will begin acoustically from 6-8 p.m. with acts including Lewis himself and his friends, including fellow Old Bakery Beer Company employee, Rory Morse. After 8 p.m., Lewis said the music will become electric with acts, Poor Dirty Astronauts and Polyshades.
"I think $10 sounds like a lot to some people, but after you factor in the free food and drink, I think it's worth it," Lewis said. "At that point, the music is just a bonus."
Children and families are welcomed to attend, but Lewis said little ones (and big ones alike) may want to have earplugs on hand for the later shows for the sake of hearing protection. Activities for the whole family, such as cookie decoration, will also be provided.
"Duke's provided us sugar cookies, and Gordon's Food Service is hooking us up with about $300 worth of food as well," Lewis said.
Lighthouse Sounds of Alton is also splitting the cost of audio engineering that evening, and Old Bakery Beer Company provided the space and assisted Lewis with some of the other aspects of the evening, making Tunes for Toys an all-around community event.
Former Tunes for Toys have gone towards benefiting Oasis Women's Center and the Boys and Girls Club of Alton. Lewis also said he was able to donate $500 toward the restoration of Northside Park in Alton last year, despite an ice storm decreasing the desired attendance.
While snow is tentatively in Friday's forecast, Lewis is optimistic.
"They say it's supposed to snow, but it's looking more and more like it will be sunny," he said.
Reporter Cory Davenport can be reached via call or text at (618) 419-3046 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.