Nearly 900 donors contributed $125,000 to the West Virginia University Foundation’s Pride Travel Fund this fall in support of the Mountaineer Marching Band.
The annual campaign was established to help defray the costs of travel for the band, including transportation, hotels and food for the more than 350 members and staff.
“Thank you to all who contributed to this campaign,” said Mountaineer Marching Band Director Stephen Lytle. “The costs to transport, house, and feed the band are significant. Just taking the band off campus for a short day trip can cost over $10,000. We are committed to supporting our team and serving as ambassadors for the University and state of West Virginia. Your donations go a long way in helping meet that mission.”
With the financial assistance of private donors, the University and the WVU Athletic Department, the Pride was able to travel to North Carolina in September for the football game against Tennessee. The band also made appearances in Princeton and Kingwood for in-state exhibition performances, and will travel to the upcoming bowl game.
“Our alumni and friends have been extremely generous once again this year. On behalf of my colleagues at the WVU Foundation, we thank all of you for your support,” said Mary Esposito, who headed up the campaign for the Foundation.
Since 2007, donors have contributed more than $1.4 million to the Pride Travel Fund. The contributions have enabled the band over the years to travel to away games at such venues as Auburn, Syracuse, Connecticut, Cincinnati, LSU, Rutgers, Pittsburgh, Oklahoma and Marshall. In 2016, the band traveled to New York City to perform in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
Anyone interested in contributing to the Pride Travel Fund may do so by contacting WVU Foundation, 304-284-4000, or www.PrideTravelFund.com.Gifts are made through the WVU Foundation, the non-profit organization that receives and administers private donations on behalf of the University.