MSU President's column for Traill County Tribune

May 14, 2016 

Mayville State University Alumni Day planned in conjunction with Summerfest


Summer will be here soon! Hopefully this means that most people will have an opportunity to get out and enjoy some great weather and fun outdoor activities. Summer also is a time for community celebrations where people come together and some come “home” for reunions and other gatherings. In Mayville-Portland, the annual Summerfest is a much-anticipated community event. The Mayville Portland Community Club members are doing a great job of organizing and coordinating a celebration that can be enjoyed by young and old June 23-25.

As part of the annual Summerfest activities, the Mayville State University Alumni Association will host the sixth annual Alumni Day at Mayville State University, on Friday, June 24. Activities planned throughout the day include guided campus tours, an ice cream social, a reception to honor the 2016 Distinguished Alumni and Distinguished Service Award recipients, the Alumni Association Awards Dinner, and a musical variety show. The grand finale for the day will be an all-alumni and friends social at the Mayville Golf Club. We’re excited to have the members of the class of 1976 and their friends coming to participate in the festivities as a part of their 40-year celebration.

Plans are to have all of the finishing touches complete at the Military Honor Garden, located on the grounds south of the Edson and Margaret Larson Alumni and Leadership Center. You may recall that ground-breaking for this beautiful and meaningful addition to the Mayville State campus was held during last year’s Alumni Day festivities. An official dedication was a part of homecoming events last fall. The monument features a life-sized bronze eagle in flight sculpture. All five branches of the military are represented on granite plaques in this tribute to Mayville State faculty, students, and community men and women for their patriotic service in America’s Armed Forces. Finishing touches yet to be completed include installation of a flag pole and night lighting, as well as landscaping all around the monument.

A limited number of plaques to honor friends and loved ones at the Military Honor Garden are still available. The intent is to honor anyone who has served in the military. Those honored definitely can be, but do not have to be, Mayville State alumni. For more information about how you can honor a loved one, contact Dena at 701-788-4864 or

We invite everyone to come and check out the completed Military Honor Garden while enjoying ice cream, courtesy of the Alumni Association and Cleone and Richard Whelan, from 2 to 3 p.m. on the grounds at the Larson Center. Guided campus tours, which will begin at 2 and 3 p.m. from the front of Old Main will end at the Larson Center.

The Larson Center will be the site for a reception to honor the 2016 Distinguished Alumni and Distinguished Service Award recipients. This will take place from 3 to 5 p.m. Everyone is welcome to stop by and visit with this year’s honorees. Distinguished Alumni Award recipients will be Nannette Bagstad (’68), Randy Eken (’78), Al Larson (’86), and Dale Norton (’81). Jerold Bietz (’63) will be honored posthumously with the Distinguished Alumni Award. Doug Petersen (’93) will receive the Distinguished Service Award.


These honorees will receive their awards at the annual Alumni Association Awards Dinner, which will be held in the MSU Campus Center Luckasen Room beginning at 5:30 p.m. Tickets are $20.00 each and can be purchased at or by calling the MSU Foundation, 701-788-4864. RSVP deadline is Monday, June 8.

A musical variety show will follow in the Classroom Building Auditorium. While the program is still being organized, plans are to feature the musical talents of a variety of Mayville State alumni. An all-alumni and friends social at the Mayville Golf Club will round out the day’s activities, from 9 p.m. to 12 a.m.

All of the events planned for Mayville State’s Alumni Day 2016 are open to the public. We cordially invite one and all to take part. We look forward to celebrating with our friends and neighbors and all who come “home” for the weekend.

Further information regarding Mayville State Alumni Day on June 24 is available at 701-788-4750 or To purchase tickets for the Alumni Association Awards Dinner, call 701-788-4864 or go to