University of Mount Olive Night at the Circus Brings in Nearly $25,000

The University of Mount Olive Alumni Association held its Sixth Annual Winter Glitz event to raise money for student scholarships on Saturday, February 23.  The theme for this year’s event was Cirque Du Lune (Circus of the Moon).
The Lois K. Murphy Regional Center was decorated to resemble a Big Top.  Guests were served smoothies and popcorn while they perused more than 150 silent auction items. In the Alumni Dining Room tables were adorned with a full burst of circus colors – red, purple, orange, and green.
Donald Fader, pastor of Friendship Free Will Baptist Church in Jones County, served as Ringmaster of the event.  In his sixth year playing for the Winter Glitz Pianist Tom Casey of Raleigh accompanied Former Miss Goldsboro Blair Mozingo.  “When Tom began playing, you could hear a pin drop in the room,” said Vice President for Institutional Advancement John Blackwell.  “Everyone recognizes Tom for the high quality musician that he is.  It was also wonderful to have a local homecoming performance by Blair Mozingo who has represented Wayne County so well on the national stage.”
Tumblers from The Hunter School of Dance in Wilson delighted the crowd with flips and splits as they tumbled to the tune of “Born to be Stars.” Lindsey Merryfield, a 2012 graduate of MOC, served as clown extraordinaire, and had the audience filled with genuine laughter with her unique tricks and skits.  Pioneer Caterers served Beef Wellington and all the trimmings complete with gourmet cupcakes topped with circus themed toppers.
“As Chair of this year’s Winter Glitz, I can say that we have a dedicated team of alumni that worked right up to a few hours before this event,” said Carolyn Fader Hill. “Our joy is in the fact that we raise money for student scholarships. Over the past five years we have raised $112,000 for deserving students to attend University of Mount Olive.”
Preliminary figures indicate donations collected to be almost $25,000 for this year’s event.
“We believe, as alumni of University of Mount Olive, that everyone should have an opportunity for an education. This event is our effort to accomplish that goal.  I truly feel that an event like Winter Glitz is our opportunity to give back to the school that has given to each of us an educational foundation and helped to transform our lives,” Hill stated.
This was Hope McPherson Fields first Winter Glitz as director of Alumni Relations, she said, “I constantly stand amazed at the dedication of our alumni that work so hard to put the Winter Glitz together.  Their drive and sole purpose is to help our students.  They want to give back because someone once gave to them when they were students.  This event was fun from its conception to its culmination on Saturday evening.  I enjoyed rolling up my sleeves and getting to know our alumni and donors even more!”
University of Mount Olive is a private institution rooted in the liberal arts tradition with defining Christian values. The College, sponsored by the Convention of Original Free Will Baptists, has locations in Mount Olive, New Bern, Wilmington, Goldsboro, Research Triangle Park, Washington and Jacksonville.  For more information, visit