Photo by DYLAN COUR
The Alpha Iota chapter of Phi Mu Alpha hosted their tenth annual Spaghetti Dinner on Saturday Nov. 9. The event was held in Eddy Music Center and featured a dinner with various musical performances. Proceeds raised through the dinner benefited one of their philanthropies.
“Spaghetti dinner is the annual fundraiser for our philanthropy ‘Music Unites,’ which is an organization that helps bring music education to children who can’t afford it otherwise,” said Zach Everly (’21).
Music Unites is one of the various charities that Phi Mu Alpha aims to support.
“They help to provide instruments and musical training to underprivileged children who wouldn’t have these experiences,” said Sam Seiffert (’20).
As Phi Mu Alpha is focused in the musical and preforming arts, this charity fits their goals and mission. “One of our core values is to advance music in America, and this philanthropy helps to directly impact these individuals,” said Everly.
A portion of the proceeds also goes to benefit other charity work the brothers are active in. “Spaghetti dinner is the main monetary philanthropy for Phi Mu Alpha,” said Colin Englehart (’20). Many of our other philanthropies take the form of concerts that we put on for the community. This affects people outside of the closer Alma community.”
Other philanthropic events include singing at the Masonic Home before the holidays as well as other concerts throughout the year.
Not only does this event benefit the charities involved, it also helps to develop skills within the brothers of Phi Mu Alpha. “Philanthropy is a rewarding part of being in a fraternity and developing the brothers into better and more empathetic members of society,” said Englehart.
Skill development through this event comes in various forms. “Planning this event takes organizational skills and leadership skills. The coordination between brothers builds trust and a sense of accomplishment,” said Englehart. Everly added, “it’s good for our brothers to come together to work on a project.”
Phi Mu Alpha hosts various events throughout the year, however most of them are casual friendship building gatherings.
“(Spaghetti dinner) is far fancier, and we get catered food for dinner and have great performances, all very professional,” said Brendan Murdie (’22).
Several changes were made to the event this year to try to make the dinner fit the needs of the brothers and their philanthropy. “This is the 10th annual, it was designed in a time that Music Unites was not our philanthropy, and we have only helped them for 5 years now,” said Everly.
This year, performances include various campus groups, both vocal and instrumental. “Our Iota Alpha Men’s Ensemble, Off Kilter, various instrumental groups and soloists will all be performing, myself included” said Murdie.
While many of the performances include Alpha Iota brothers, this year the privilege of sharing talents at this event was extended to include more musicians. “Some of the changes this year are that you don’t have to be a brother to preform, you just need to be a supporter of the fraternity,” said Everly.
Part of the rationale for including non-brothers in the event was to enhance the event musically. “We want to make it a more enjoyable experience for the brothers and the community,” said Everly.
Brothers have fond memories of past events, they recalled spending time preparing with their friends, and the skills built through this experience. “My favorite Spaghetti dinner memory is last year, after the dinner was over, some of the brothers went back to the house and actually ate spaghetti together,” said Englehart.