MSU President's column for Traill County Tribune

November 1, 2014 

Celebrate the holidays in song at Mayville State University


It’s hard to believe that the holidays are right around the corner! Where does the time go? People start making holiday plans early, and I’m hoping you’ll add a couple of Mayville State events to your calendar.

I extend my personal invitation for you to join us at Mayville State as we celebrate the holiday season in song. The Mayville State Concert Band and Choir will present a holiday concert Sunday, December 14, and the MSU Foundation will host the Poinsettia Ball Saturday, December 13. We look forward to both of these events with great anticipation.

If you attended the band and choir’s homecoming concert in October, you know that the Christmas concert is sure to be a real treat. The concert will begin at 2:00 p.m. December 14 in the MSU Classroom Building Auditorium. Admission is free and open to the public, and a reception will follow the concert in the Campus Center Luckasen Room. Don’t miss this opportunity to hear our talented student musicians under the direction of Michael Bakken, and assisted by Greta Paschke.

Continuing the tradition of the Holiday Gala, the MSU Foundation will sponsor the Poinsettia Ball again this year, on Saturday, December 13. The evening will include dancing, socializing, an hors d’oeuvres buffet, and cash bar.

The energetic Downtown Horns are coming back to Mayville State! The group has become well-known as the premiere wedding and party band in the Grand Forks area. They play selections from the rock, blues, and horn band genres, and have been influenced by such artists as Blood, Sweat, and Tears, Chicago, The Commodores, Tower of Power, Van Morrison, and Wilson Pickett. Band members include Dave Christianson, Jenny Loer, Michael Wittgraf, Dan Christianson, Dave Berger, Mike Blackmun, Phil Jensen, and Mayville State alumni Stacey Searle and Lynn Schroeder. The group last performed at Mayville State for the 125th Anniversary Homecoming Dance. Everyone who attended enjoyed the experience immensely!

The Poinsettia Ball will begin at 7:00 p.m. December 13 in the Mayville State University Campus Center Luckasen Room. Dress is semi-formal, and the event is for those 21 years of age and older. The event will end at 11:00 p.m. Tickets for the Poinsettia Ball sell for $25.00 each and can be purchased at the MSU Foundation office, 701-788-4687, or online at

Here’s an idea! Why not make the Poinsettia Ball the site for your business’s holiday party? We can reserve tables so that everyone in your group may sit together. This would be a great way to celebrate with your employees and co-workers, and all the planning has already been done for you! For more information about this exciting opportunity, contact Donor Services Representative Michelle McLean at the MSU Foundation office, 701-788-4687 or 

Details are not available yet, but I understand that special guests from the North Pole may make a stop at the Larson Alumni and Leadership Center on the morning of December 13. Keep your eyes and ears open for more information about this exciting event!

As the holidays near, our thoughts turn especially to those who are most special to us. We at Mayville State are truly grateful to our alumni and friends for their loyal support throughout the year. Providing these opportunities to get together and celebrate this festive season is just one way that we can show our appreciation and gratitude. We hope that you’ll join us!