With a favorite spring celebration just around the corner, Mount Airy Museum of Regional History officials say that without support of area businesses it would be nearly impossible to keep the doors open during the slow season.
Museum Executive Director Matt Edwards said plans are under way for the annual St. Patrick’s Day party, set for Old North State Winery on March 16 from 8 to 11 p.m.
The event will feature music by Carolina Nights, and Edwards said basketball fans shouldn’t be worried that the party is scheduled during the college basketball tournament.
“One of our challenges in planning the annual fundraiser is that it’s actually ACC tournament weekend, but we have been assured that the games will be on the television at Old North State for those who feel like they want to come out but just can’t miss the game,” he said.
For the museum director, it’s small events like the annual party that make a huge difference in the museum’s pocketbook.
“Like our Halloween and New Year’s parties, this is not a particularly educational event, but it’s a way for us to build support for the museum by presenting events that people want to attend,” he said.
And during the winter months, traffic slows down at the museum, meaning less money in its coffers.
“What do these little events like the St. Patrick’s Day party mean? They mean electricity stays on. They mean we can keep our doors open and pay our bills,” he said.
Last year, the three parties raised nearly $12,000 for the non-profit.
“That equates to about four percent of our annual operational budget,” Edwards said. “It equates to roughly what our gift shop produces each year and is about the amount of money we receive from public allocations.”
Which is a big deal, and Edwards credited the relationship with Old North State Winery and music sponsor B&L Jewelers with making them possible.
“As a non-profit, we’re tremendously thankful for the partnership with these local businesses, particularly Old North State and B&L Jewelers,” he said. “The generosity they’ve exhibited has allowed the events to become successful.”
Edwards said the funding raised by small functions is critical.
“These are not inconsequential events,” he said. “We would really struggle to maintain our operational revenues during this time of the year without them.”
Tickets for the St. Patrick’s Day party are $10 in advance and $15 at the door.
For more information or to reserve tickets, call the museum at 786-4478.
Reach Keith Strange at email@example.com or 719-1929.