The annual Harvest Supper on Oct. 16 promises a unique experience on the grounds of Nobel Prize-winning author William Faulkner’s historic home, Rowan Oak in Oxford. Attracting support for the University of Mississippi Museum, the 7 p.m. event is the largest fundraiser for the museum, which is celebrating its 75th anniversary.
Individual tickets are $125 and can be purchased from the University Museum. Guests will be greeted on Rowan Oak’s front lawn with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, and providing locally grown food for the dinner is Elizabeth Heiskell and Woodson Ridge Farms of Oxford. In addition to an art auction, which features two pieces by acclaimed artists William Dunlap and Jason Bouldin, lively musical entertainment will be provided by And the Echo, Dent May and the UM Steel Orchestra.
“Harvest Supper is a notable event in Oxford’s annual arts and cultural calendar, and its proceeds permit the museum to continue its dynamic growth and offer a wide range of arts and educational programs for our community,” said Amy Lowe Lewis, president of the Friends of the Museum. “Support and sponsorship from community leaders and businesses allow the event to dedicate its proceeds entirely to the museum. We are grateful to everyone who takes part.”
Friends of the Museum, a volunteer organization that supports fundraising, advocacy and special programming for the museum, organizes and hosts the event, which is in its third year. Dorothy Howorth, a former president of the Friends, says the event’s name reflects the event’s purpose.
“The name Harvest Supper worked for us because we wanted an informal community gathering where everyone would feel welcome – one that would be fun and celebratory and appropriate for the season,” she said. “So many fundraisers try to be exclusive, but Harvest Supper focuses on being inclusive. The lack of reserved tables promotes social mixing, which is what a community event should do.”
Proceeds from the evening will help support numerous aspects of the University Museum, including acquisitions, the “Conversations” guest lecture series, exhibitions, educational programming and special events. The event also helps raise awareness about the ongoing needs to maintain and operate Rowan Oak, a National Historic Landmark and part of the Literary Landmarks program, as well as the Walton-Young Historic House, also managed by the museum.
“The Harvest Supper event is utterly sublime – Rowan Oak under starlight is magical, and attendees have remarked consistently about the power of the evening,” said Robert Saarnio, director of the University Museum. “As the Museum’s signature fundraising event of the year, and the only such event in any calendar year held on the grounds of Rowan Oak, the combination of cause and conviviality is unmatched in our city’s annual social calendar,” the director said.
“Friends of the Museum is an absolutely essential and deeply dedication fundraising auxiliary for this museum, and much of what we do would not be possible without them. The members are passionate about us, and their care and concern translate to tireless energy and goodwill on our behalf.”
The University Museum is located at the intersection of University Avenue and Fifth Street. Hours are 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays. The museum houses the nation’s largest collection of Greek and Roman artifacts (the David M. Robinson Memorial Collection), manages two historic properties and conducts numerous school- and community-based programs each year.
For more information or to purchase tickets to the Harvest Supper, call 662-915-7073. Individuals and organizations can learn more about supporting the University Museum by contacting Angela Barlow Brown at 662-915-3181 or email@example.com.