Shoppers gathered on the second floor of the Downing Student Union Monday night to browse the different items for sale by local boutiques as part of a fundraiser held by Midnight on the Hill.
Mindy Johnson, assistant director of student activities, said Midnight on the Hill is a student-led organization dedicated to spreading awareness for the cause of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Each year, the organization hosts a series of events called Awareness Week to raise funds for St. Jude and spread the word of their main event in March.
“Awareness week is a good opportunity for the students to get their programming efforts out there so students and faculty know that there is a philanthropic group on campus raising money for St. Jude,” Johnson said.
Local businesses including boutique Steel Mill and Co., Matilda Jane and Stella and Dot set up displays of their merchandise available for purchase in DSU.
Alexis Mueller and Shelby Gibson manned a table from their boutique, Steel Mill and Co. and said they were drawn to the event as a way to give back.
“We’re currently looking into getting more involved in the community,” Mueller said. “We’re also trying to get our name out there before we open up our Lexington location.”
Gibson said their company was all about women supporting women and that they were all about anything women-based, which was why the event originally appealed to them.
Owensboro junior Haley Davis said she was largely responsible for planning the event.
Davis is the co-executive director of Midnight on the Hill, and said that she had been preparing all day for the event.
“We were wanting to do something that would bring a lot of people together,” Davis said.
Davis said senior Shelby Reynolds was in charge of putting the Girls Night together and the two of them contacted local boutiques through the aid of social media.
“Our focus in planning was something fun to bring people in that would also be able to give back,” Davis said.
Reynolds said she agreed of the larger purpose for the evening.
“We wanted to find a way to bring people together,” Reynolds said “I think a great way to do that is to get a bunch of girls together and letting them shop.”
Reynolds said that the boutiques involved each promised to give 20 percent of their proceeds from the evening to St. Jude, which will help Midnight on the Hill to reach their $30,000 fundraising goal.
To Reynolds, the event was more than her goal of finding a way to make fundraising fun.
“As college students, there are so many opportunities through which we can give back.” Reynolds said. “Not just giving money, but gathering together as a community and doing it for a greater cause.”
News reporter Abbigail Nutter can be reached at 270-745-6011 and [email protected] her on Twitter at @abbeynutter.