Magnolia Mingle, a Friday night Homecoming event that’s quickly becoming a tradition at Mississippi University for Women, raised $16,485.61 in its second year.

Andrea Stevens, director of Development & Alumni Relations, announces the “Be the Light” campaign reaching $25 million.

“Not only is Magnolia Mingle a fun way for all alumni to reunite and catch up at Homecoming, but it is growing in popularity as a fundraiser,” said Katy Canion Pacelli, Mississippi University for Women Alumni Association special events committee chair.

The 2023 Magnolia Mingle raised $1,274.29 more than the inaugural 2022 event.

Magnolia Mingle sells 200 drawdown tickets for a $2,500 prize, which goes to the holder of the last ticket drawn. The event is a prize drawing in reverse, with the last name drawn winning. This year, Dr. Phillip “Flapp” Cockrell and LuAnne Farrar McGuirk, alumni celebrating their 20-year reunion, were the last two ticket holders in the drawing and agreed to split the money.

The event also sells stadium cups and drink huggers for $25, entitling the holder to beverages including the Magnolia Mingle signature cocktail.

As names were called in the drawdown, alumni enjoyed beverages including the strawberry-infused Magnolia Mingle-tini and fare from a variety of food trucks parked near Shattuck Hall. Music had alumni as well as students dancing in the green space in front of Poindexter Hall.

The second Magnolia Mingle had extra excitement with the announcement of a $13 million capital campaign, “A Home for the Future,” to fund renovations of Shattuck Hall. Opened in 1910 as a four-story dormitory, Shattuck was destroyed by a fire in 1953. The next year, Shattuck was rebuilt as a two-story dormitory and dining hall. It became the home of The W’s Culinary Arts Institute following its founding in 1996.

With the Culinary Arts Institute building coming to completion, The W has the opportunity for a renovation of Shattuck as a venue for campus and community events with The Inn at The W on the second floor as a space for visiting alumni, families and other guests. The Inn at The W would also be a training opportunity for students in culinary arts.

“Shattuck Hall has such a rich and storied past for our alumni,” said Jenny Katool, chair of the MUW Foundation Board of Directors. “There are so many special memories for alumni who dined and lived in Shattuck and our nursing and culinary arts students who studied in this historic building. We are excited it will be home to our alumni and a place where our students will have the best resources to plan for their careers.”

The historic “Be the Light” campaign, which raised $25 million for the university, was also celebrated during Magnolia Mingle. The capital campaign started in 2017 with a $15 million goal over five years. Four years later, “Be the Light” had raised $17 million, so the goal was increased to $25 million, and its timeline was extended by three more years.

Mississippi water-colorist Wyatt Waters paints a live scene of Magnolia Mingle

During Magnolia Mingle, acclaimed Mississippi water-colorist Wyatt Waters painted the scene at Shattuck. Prints of the painting of the soiree are available for purchase to support the “A Home for the Future” campaign. For more information, call (662) 329-7148.

About The W

Located in historic Columbus, Mississippi, The W was founded in 1884 as the first state-supported college for women in the United States. Today, the university is home to 2,227 students in more than 70 majors and concentrations and has educated men for 40 years. The university is nationally recognized for low student debt, diversity and social mobility which empowers students to BE BOLD.

Be Bold. Tower with Blue.