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The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

Reclaiming Bulldog Bash: Event donates proceeds to Reclaimed Project, helps local families with costs of adoption

Bulldog Bash not only fills the streets of downtown Starkville with free live music, but the event also raises awareness for local philanthropies and gives the community a concert under the stars. 

Although Bulldog Bash is a lively free concert, the event gives back to Starkville.

Each year, the Bulldog Bash committee selects a charity to receive the proceeds Bash sponsors donate to the festival. The directors of the 2013 Bulldog Bash have chosen the Reclaimed Project as the organization that will benefit this year.

Michael Hogan, Mississippi State University’s Student Association president, said the SA learned about the Reclaimed Project from Jason Stoker, co-owner of Deep South Pout in Starkville, and also from friends around town. Hogan said supporting the Reclaimed Project expands the event beyond the MSU community. 

“We didn’t want Bulldog Bash to be strictly associated with Mississippi State University,” he said. “By giving back to the Reclaimed Project, we’re able to connect well with the city of Starkville and broaden our horizons.”

The Reclaimed Project is a homegrown non-profit organization founded in Starkville in 2012. James 1:27, which speaks of caring for widows and orphans, inspired the group’s founding. Resultantly, the Reclaimed Project strives to bestow care for orphans, provide adoption resources and impart adoption assistance to the Starkville community. 

Amanda Fones, Bulldog Bash director, said this year the Bash’s sponsors wanted to give back to a charity that serves Starkville. 

“This year we selected the Reclaimed Project because we wanted the money to go to a local charity,” she said. “Bulldog Bash is a community-wide event, and we know the importance of keeping things local. We love the mission of the Reclaimed Project, and we think the organization brings something special back to Starkville.”

The Reclaimed Project assists families who have trouble adopting children due to the expenses of adoption. The organization provides grants and mentors to families to assist in the adoption process.

Sarah Wyatt, a local Starkville resident, was one such grant recipient. Wyatt said the funds she received from the Reclaimed Project give her the opportunity to transport her daughter home from China.  

“I can’t thank the Reclaimed Project enough for selecting me as a grant recipient. It is a true blessing and prayers answered to bring my daughter, Chloe, home from China,” she said. “Adopting as a single parent, the grant will definitely help with adoption expenses.”

Donations from various sponsors fund Bulldog Bash, and the money from the sponsors provides the essentials needed for the production of the concert.

Fones said the budget for this year’s Bulldog Bash gives all remaining donations to the Reclaimed Project. 

“After the Bash is all said and done, all of the remaining money in our budget will go to the Reclaimed Project,” she said. “Along with monetary support of the organization, representatives of Reclaimed Project will be present on Friday, Oct. 4 to share more information about their organization.”

The screens set up at the Bash also feature videos about the Reclaimed Project between musical acts to bring awareness to the organization. Bulldog Bash hopes to make people aware of the cause and mission of the Reclaimed Project and also raise awareness so people may support the organization in the future.

Fones said the existence of a service like the Reclaimed Project in Starkville speaks volumes about the community’s large heart and drives Bulldog Bash to support the Reclaimed Project.

“Having an organization such as Reclaimed, founded right here in Starkville, is very important to the type of community that Starkville is and how wonderful the people of Starkville are,” she said. “It shows that we are more than just another college town, but that together, Starkville can make an impact, both local, and across the globe.” 

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Reclaiming Bulldog Bash: Event donates proceeds to Reclaimed Project, helps local families with costs of adoption