"Beta and Bowties" to raise money for youth suicide prevention.


Muskegon sophomore Joseph Parras poses on Mar. 18. in the Bovee University Center.

When Joseph Pallas, a member of Beta Theta Pi, set $5,240 as the monetary goal for the fraternity's upcoming "Beta and Bowties" fundraiser on March 22, he recognized how the number seemed arbitrary on the surface.

But it wasn’t; "It's a representation of the 5,240 suicides attempted daily by students in grades seven through twelve in the U.S.," the Muskegon sophomore said.

Unlike several other Greek organizations who fundraise for their respective foundations, Beta Theta Pi fundraises for already existing charities, Pallas said. This year, the fraternity chose the Jed Foundation, a non-profit that focuses on mental health issues and suicide prevention in youth.

Pallas said the philanthropy choice was unanimous within the fraternity because mental health and suicide have affected many members personally or within their circle of friends and family.

“Beta and Bowties” will take place from 5 to 9 p.m. on March 22 at the Beta Theta Phi chapter’s house at 814 S. Main St in Mount Pleasant.

The event will provide an all-you-can-eat pasta dinner. Tickets are $4 if purchased in advance from a member, or $5 at the door.

Attire is not formal, though fraternity members wear formal dress to serve attendees, Pallas said.

On the day of the fundraiser, an affiliated Snapchat filter will be available from noon to 5 p.m. Those who submit a filtered snap to their story and show the snap to a fraternity member at the event will be entered into a drawing to win a $40 gift card to the Blue Gator Sports Pub and Grill.

Students who cannot attend the event but still wish to support the cause can donate to the fraternity’s Give Butter page at givebutter.com/hbohab. 


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