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IU graduate organizes variety show benefiting Middle Way House


New Wings, the emergency shelter for assault victims at the Middle Way House, offers 24-hour crisis intervention. Middle Way House, a shelter in Bloomington for those affected by domestic violence and sexual assault, is one of many organizations that celebrated Purple Thursday for Domestic Violence Awareness Month. File photo / Indiana Daily Student Buy Photos

On Sunday a Christmas variety show benefiting local nonprofit Middle Way House will take place in Alumni Hall in the Indiana Memorial Union.

Middle Way House provides shelter for women and children fleeing violence at home, according to the nonprofit’s website.

The Ernie Jo Christmas Spectacular will feature performances by a cappella group Resting Pitch Face, dance group Movement Exchange, local band Boney Junes, the Hoosier Pops Orchestra and a short original musical accompanied by the Ernie Jo Symphony Orchestra, according to the event website.

While the event is free, there is a suggested donation of $10, according to the event’s website.

IU graduate and event creator Ernie Jo Fipps said he reached out to as many IU student organizations as possible while planning the event and has already received nearly $2,500 in donations. He said if the event is successful, he should be able to raise at least $5,000 more for Middle Way 

“It’ll be a fun event,” Fipps said. “We just like music and entertaining people. We thought if we could use that to help people as well then we should.”

Fipps said he was inspired to create his own event for charity after being involved with Chi Alpha Christian Ministry while at IU. He said he chose to donate to Middle Way House because the organization recently lost some of its government funding. He said he would like to continue the event in the 

“If all goes well, it would be really awesome to make this a yearly staple and have a yearly fundraiser,” he said. “We would definitely love to do it again and keep having an opportunity to give back to the community.”

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