MSU BILLINGS FOUNDATION NEWS—The MSU Billings Foundation’s annual Wine & Food Festival has been canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. Despite the cancellation, plans continue to raise dollars for student scholarships.
“It is with a heavy heart that we made this decision,” said President and CEO Bill Kennedy. “Wine & Food Festival is a community favorite event for many who want to see MSUB students succeed. We hope to have their continued support with our scholarship campaign through September.”
The festival, which was initially scheduled for May 11-16 and rescheduled for Oct. 9-10, is the MSUB Foundation’s largest annual fundraiser. In 2019, Wine & Food Festival netted $380,000, with a total of more than $6 million netted since the inaugural event in 1993. Thousands of dollars raised through the week-long festival of events fund scholarships for MSU Billings students each academic year.
Beginning today, the foundation launched a digital campaign to help students. Supporters can visit giving.msubillings.edu to make a gift of any size to benefit student scholarships. New this year, gifts designated to the Montana Access Scholarship will be matched dollar-for-dollar (up to $125,000), providing 250 students with $1,000 scholarships.
The reinvented festival has raised over $75,000 so far, and momentum is growing.
“There are hundreds of people who partner with us each year in support of our students, which is why we take the matter of keeping them safe very seriously,” said Jeanne Moller, who has organized the festival for more than 20 years. “Since many students need our help now, perhaps more than ever, this campaign gives our friends a safe way to unite for MSU Billings this fall.”
Next year, the foundation believes it will host the festival at its usual time in May 2021. Updates will be posted online at msubfoundation.com as they are available.