Comprised of nearly 400 members from 18 states, Mississippi State's Famous Maroon Band is seeking $600,000 in private gifts toward a new synthetic turf practice field. Photo by: Courtesy photo/Robert Lewis
December 30, 2017 9:58:16 PM
The Famous Maroon Band at Mississippi State University is seeking $600,000 in private gifts toward a new synthetic turf field that will enable practice sessions during extreme weather.
Part of MSU's nationally accredited Department of Music, the Famous Maroon Band has been a significant part of MSU for more than 115 years and is one of the oldest traditions of its kind in the Southeast. Comprised of students from 18 states, the 2017 band has nearly 400 members, making it the largest student organization on the MSU campus and the largest college band in Mississippi.
"A synthetic field will provide an adequate outdoor practice area, allowing our band to rehearse during periods of inclement weather," said Elva Kay Lance, MSU alumna and director of bands. "Our band is known for appearances at SEC football games, and gifts for a new field will allow our reputation to continue to grow nationally."
The lead gift for the project comes from Jim and Julia Rouse of Houston, Texas. Jim Rouse is a retired vice president of ExxonMobil and the university's 2012 National Alumnus. The couple supports the university through endowed scholarships, endowed professorships and athletics. Additionally, the Division of Student Affairs uses a 1929 Ford Model-A Roadster two-door maroon convertible donated by the Rouses for campus recruiting and related activities.
"Our band enrollment has continued to increase in recent years, and we gratefully acknowledge Jim and Julia Rouse for their support," Lance said. "Gifts from alumni, friends and parents will have an immediate impact as they will help us with continuing to compete for the top players in the state and region who will represent our university."
Contributions exceeding the total goal for the project will become part of an endowment to maintain the synthetic field over time. Gifts for the new practice field can be made online at accelerate.msstate.edu/msubandturf or by contacting Trish Cunetto, director of development for the College of Education, at [email protected] For more on the project, visit youtu.be/IrWoEptDxlM.
Learn more about MSU's Department of Music online at music.msstate.edu and the Famous Maroon Band at msuband.msstate.edu.