MSU President's column for Traill County Tribune

November 2, 2013

Traditions will usher in the holiday season


As the holiday season approaches, we think of traditions we have come to look forward to year after year. One of those traditions is the Mayville State University Madrigal Feast, which is held every-other year on the first weekend of December. The feast will be held on two nights this year, December 6 and 7. Entertainment will be presented by the MSU Madrigal Singers and Wellington Winds, a.k.a. the Mayville State Music Department, under the direction of Michael Bakken.

Those who attend can expect an evening of Renaissance dining and entertainment, courtesy of their hosts Lady Barbara and Lord Phillip of Nottingham. Dinner, cooked and served by the MSU Dining Services staff, will include a choice of Cornish game hen, roast beef, or fettuccine marinara. Guests can also expect to be treated to wassail, turkey legs, potatoes, and flaming pudding.

The first madrigal feast at Mayville State was held in 2005. This is the fifth time a madrigal feast has been held at Mayville State. I anticipate that this year’s event will be every bit as wonderful as those of the past, and I encourage you to get your tickets for the feast as soon as possible, if you haven’t done so already.

A limited number of seats are available, and you must make your reservation by Friday, Nov. 22. Tickets sell for $35.00 each and can be purchased at the MSU Bookstore or in the MSU Foundation office, or you may purchase tickets online at For further information, please call 701-788-4687. Proceeds from the madrigal feast will go to Mayville State University’s music department.

The Music Department personnel are very busy these days, preparing for what will be a super-busy first weekend in December. They’re also getting ready for the annual Christmas Concert, scheduled for Sunday, Dec. 8. The concert will feature the MSU Concert Band, the Comet Tones, and the MSU Stage Band. It will begin at 2:00 p.m. in the MSU Classroom Auditorium. Everyone is welcome, and there is no admission charge. Please join us for what will be a very festive afternoon.

The Poinsettia Ball, held for the first time at Mayville State in December of 2012, was wildly successful and an encore in 2013 was highly requested. Thus, a new tradition was born. The Poinsettia Ball will be back Saturday, Dec. 14, from 7:00 to 11:00 p.m. in the MSU Campus Center Luckasen Room. Downtown Horns will again be providing the music, and an hors d’oeuvres buffet and cash bar will be available. Attire is semi-formal, and you must be 21 or older to attend. Tickets for this holiday gala event are $25 per person and are available at or at the MSU Foundation office until December 2. If you’d like to make this event your business holiday party or a place to entertain your friends and family, call 701-788-4687 to find out how you might reserve a table.

This brings me to a tradition that began at Mayville State University in January of 2008, The MSU Foundation Honor Society President’s Dinner. This year, the annual dinner will be held Saturday, Nov. 16. Donors whose lifetime gifts to Mayville State total $10,000 or more have been invited to attend this special event which will include a meal and recognition of donors. A pre-dinner social will be held in the newly renovated Edson and Margaret Larson Alumni and Leadership Center. While the grand opening of the building is not scheduled until Alumni Days in June of 2014, major renovation will be complete during the next couple of weeks. Furnishings and final touches will be applied over the next several months. The social will provide a great opportunity for donors to have a look at the beautiful “new” facility. Dinner will follow in the MSU Campus Center Luckasen Room. We are grateful to Bell State Bank & Trust for sponsoring the President’s Dinner for a second year.

The MSU Foundation’s program for cumulative donor recognition, which began several years ago, has been well-received by donors. Donors are now being recognized for their financial contributions to all projects at Mayville State, academic scholarships (formerly routed through M-300), facility improvements, athletics, etc. Not only does the recognition program incorporate a donor’s gifts to all areas at Mayville State, gifts made over the donor’s lifetime are taken into account.

We have so much for which to be thankful at Mayville State. One of the most cherished of our many blessings is our Mayville State family. This family is made up of many wonderful people; including faculty, staff, students, parents of students, alumni, community members, and other friends. It is these people who make Mayville State the great place that it is, and we take great pleasure in celebrating special times together and recognizing those who have made extraordinary contributions. We look forward to sharing these special times with you.