Northern Traditions earns $100K+ for MMCC Foundation

April 27, 2017

More than 800 attended MMCC’s 16th annual Northern Traditions fundraiser at Jay’s Sporting Goods last Sunday evening. Photo by J. Maurer

More than 800 attended MMCC’s 16th annual Northern Traditions fundraiser at Jay’s Sporting Goods last Sunday evening.
Photo by J. Maurer

By Pat Maurer
Correspondent

Jay’s Sporting Goods was packed when college supporters attended the 16th annual Mid Michigan Community College fundraiser “Northern Traditions” last Sunday.

“I don’t know the exact number yet, but we raised over $100,000 this year,” Matt Miller, Vice President of Student & Community Relations, said Monday.
He said about 800 attended the fundraiser Sunday evening, which raises funds for the MMCC Foundation to support the College’s services with scholarships, program development and facility improvement. Funds also support the Foundation’s program for at-risk youth called “Students of Promise.”

Miller said over the past 16 years, the annual event has raised over $1.5 million.

Northern Traditions always features a celebrity sports guest and prints from a wildlife artist are given to every attendee, as well as a $25 gift certificate donated by Jay’s.

A Central Michigan native;1954 graduate of Clare High School and CMU alumni; the award winning artist Earl Robinette created the exclusive print of a pair of loons titled “Renewing Their Bond” especially for this year.

Renowned artist Earl Robinette was featured at the MMCC event at Jay’s Sporting Goods. Photo courtesy of MMCC

Renowned artist Earl Robinette was featured at the MMCC event at Jay’s Sporting Goods.
Photo courtesy of MMCC

Robinette, who began painting at age five, is still involved in creating paintings, drawings and pottery eight decades later. He was instrumental in creating the first ceramics program at Port Huron Junior College (later renamed St. Clare Community College) where he taught drawing, painting with oils, acrylics and watercolors and prepared students for teaching art in schools.

This year’s celebrity guest was former Detroit Tiger Scott Lusader.

He attended the University of Florida before playing in the major leagues.

He was drafted by the Detroit Tigers in the 6th round of the 1985 amateur draft and made his Major League Debut for the Tigers on Sept. 1, 1987.

As a rookie, Lusader hit .319 in 23 games with a .489 slugging percentage, three doubles, a triple, a home run and eight RBIs. In 1991, Scott Lusader signed with the New York Yankees. Lusader was on hand to share stories from his time as a Tiger, talk to guests, and sign autographs.

Another feature of the annual fundraiser was the many culinary businesses who joined the festivities, offering free samples of their specialties to one and all at the event.

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