The Tapestry of Community Offerings will continue its tradition of helping single parents get an education by raising money for college scholarships on Friday and Saturday.
The local non-profit organization will sponsor the ninth annual Herstory Weekend at Pitchers Sports Pub and Pizzeria in Belleville. The music, dance and art event is tied to Women's History Month, but men are a big part of the effort and encouraged to attend.
Leading the entertainment lineup again this year will be Kim Massie, an award-winning jazz, blues, R&B, gospel and rock singer from St. Louis. She will perform with her band, The Solid Senders, from 9 to 10:30 p.m. Friday.
Other Friday acts include Allie Hulen, Rebecca Ryan, Bottoms Up, Exotic Rhythms Bellydance, and Bible Belt Sinners. Saturday's lineup is Broken Cookie, Cave of Swords, Sarah Jane & the Blue Notes, Mynx Academy Students and EarthSol featuring Kim Vrooman. The Cosmic Collaborative Hoops Group will perform throughout.
"All of our acts feature women or the work of women, whether they're musicians or dancers or artists," said Vrooman, who sings and plays guitar with EarthSol. "Both night start with young artists, appropriate for all ages. As the evening goes on, it's more adult-oriented."
TOCO was founded in 2002 when Vrooman and fellow musicians organized a camping festival to raise money for the Shelter Shop, which had been damaged by fire. The shop supports the Violence Prevention Center of Southwestern Illinois.
At that time, TOCO stood for Twin Oaks Camp Out because the festival was at Twin Oaks Golf Club. Leaders later changed the name and in 2007 obtained non-profit status.
"TOCO assists regional children and families in need through community partnerships and takes a progressive role to promote the community pledge to reduce, reuse and recycle, all in order to build a strong, diverse and sustainable community," according to its mission statement.
The organization opened the TOCO thrift shop in 2010 to support its own programs and those of other charities. The shop is at 825 West Main St. in Belleville.
Herstory Weekend funds $1,000 scholarships for two Southwestern Illinois College students each year.
The idea is to help single parents who might be struggling financially and need a "break" now and then to reach their full potential.
Beyond entertainment, Herstory Weekend will include free haircuts by Heather Roe of Green Apple Salon for people willing to donate hair to Beautiful Lengths, which makes wigs for cancer patients. Sign up at www.toconfp.org or call 257-8626.
TOCO will honor its women of the year during a VIP reception from 6 to 7 p.m. Friday at Pitchers. Those being honored are Karen Jobe and Barb Hunter, who founded Herstory Month at SWIC; Karen Nowak owner of Circle of Health Wellness Center in Belleville; Susie Schrage, Madison County director of social work; and young artists Lauren Mormino and Allie Hulen.
Herstory Weekend is presented by TOCO, KDHS 88.1 Community Radio and Triple Jam Live Concert Productions.
At a glance
What: 9th annual Herstory Weekend, a fundraiser for single parents' scholarships benefiting students at Southwestern Illinois College
When: 7 a.m. to 1 a.m. Friday and Saturday
Where: Pitchers, 104 West Main St., Belleville
Admission: $8 per night ($2 off if you donate a clothing or household item, either at the door or in advance at the TOCO thrift shop)
Information: Visit wwwtoconfp.org, call 257-8626 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
7-7:30 p.m. Allie Hulen
7:30-8 Rebecca Ryan
8-9 Bottoms Up Blues Gang
9-10:30 vocalist Kim Massie
10:30-11 Exotic Rhythms Bellydance
11:30 p.m.-1 a.m. Bible Belt Sinners featuring vocalist Molly Simms
7-7:45 Broken Cookie
8-9 Cave of Swords featuring vocalist Sunyatta McDermott
9-10:15 Sarah Jane & the Blue Notes
10:30-11:15 Mynx Academy student dancers
11:30 p.m.-1 a.m. EarthSol featuring Kim Vrooman