Music for MS, a local annual event that is held to raise money for Multiple Sclerosis, has changed locations after seven years of being held at Sharon and Albert McNeil’s farm, and on June 21 will take place for the first time at the Agri-Museum in the southeast corner of Esterhazy, where the Threshermen’s Show is usually held.
“After a great seven-year run, the previous organizers decided to pass the torch,” said Stacey McGregor, organizer of Music for MS 2015, about the McNeil’s decision to step down. “They have ended on a high note, with seven years of success, raising $45,000, and without any negative notes about any of the seven events.”
Music for MS is a family event, and will have activities to keep adults and children happy and busy throughout the day. There is a licensed beer garden that is enclosed, a number of bands playing music all day, a silent auction, a penny raffle, a 50/50 raffle, an interactive tent sponsored by SaskPower, and many other activities geared towards children. sponsored by A&W. Only cash will be accepted at this event.
Admission at the gate is $20, and 12 and under is free. The admission entitles the ticket holder access to the grounds for the full seven hours, from 2-9 p.m., to enjoy the variety of entertainment that is being provided. Bands already confirmed include local musicians Katie Miller, 40 Below, Rodeo Active and Silk and Steel. A representative from MS Society Canada, Saskatchewan Division, will be at the event and will speak about the disease and the research being done.
McGregor volunteered for this event for the past two years, and when she heard that 2014 would be the last year that the McNeil’s would host it on their farm she felt that it was too good of a cause and that it should continue being an annual fundraiser, so she decided that she would organize Music for MS for 2015.
“Having the event at the Agri-Museum brings it closer to home,” McGregor said. “It might even work to our advantage, having everything within the town’s limits. Those that wish to attend can even walk there if they want to. Families will have seven hours of entertainment nearby for their convenience.”
There will be a full-service concession on site, with items such as burgers, fries, popcorn, drinks, taco in a bag, and everybody’s favorite – mini donuts.
There is still a need for volunteers, according to McGregor. There are already 12 people that have volunteered to be a part of the organization from start to finish, but McGregor will still need some volunteers prior to the event to canvass businesses for donations of items for the raffle, penny sale, and auction 10 days to two weeks before. Businesses can also choose to purchase advertising for the event. Volunteers are also needed the day of the event for a variety of duties.
McGregor has managed to keep the initial cost of the event down up until this point, thanks to the overwhelming generosity of businesses, organizations, and individuals who have donated time, auction items, and funding for this event.
Each year, the bands that have played, and the bands playing this year, donate their time. All of the people doing the huge job of organizing Music for MS: canvassing, collecting, making phone calls, and working at the event, all donate their time for this variety of duties. Businesses have begun to donate items and cash.
“This event gives people the opportunity to be involved with and give to a good cause,” McGregor said. “We all know someone with MS, and this is a community event. All of the funds raised stay in Saskatchewan, and are distributed from the Regina office of the MS Society of Canada, Saskatchewan Division.”
If you are unable to attend this years event and still want to contribute to the cause, there will be 50/50 tickets sold and drawn in the two weeks prior to the event. If no one contacts you, tickets will be available at The Motor Pub and The Miner-Journal. If you are on facebook, check out the Music for MS!event page for a direct link to donate online for the Ichallenge MS account and to keep updated on the event.
To volunteer, donate, or for more information, contact Terri Duchek at 306-740-7437.