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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

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Shuffle Function Show Spearheads KMSU Fundraising Efforts

Annual pledge drive runs through Friday, April 22 at 6 p.m.

Piper Cleaveland, Mankato Free Press, 4-22-2016

By the time you wake up today, Shelley Pierce and Tim Lind will be very, very tired.

Why? It’s the annual pledge drive for Minnesota State University’s KMSU radio station. And as usual it kicks off with a 24-hour pledge-drive marathon where Pierce and Lind, hosts of the popular Shuffle Function morning show, stay up for 24 hours pulling in as many donations as possible.

This will their 13th such 24-hour marathon, which runs until 6 p.m. today. Pierce and Lind will be live on the air, taking calls, playing games and giving out thank you gifts for any donations of $25 or more.

KMSU’s Shuffle Function is a listener-funded show that has relied on the generosity and support of its community for 15 years. Thanks to donations from their biannual fundraisers (one in the spring and one in the fall) Shuffle Function has been able to maintain their entirely commercial free broadcast of rock, jazz, and listener-requested music.

“The thing that makes us awesome,” Lind said, “is that we’re volunteer funded and we get to play whatever we want.”

All the money raised at this year’s Pledge Drive A-Go-Go — their name for the pledge drive — will go toward new equipment and upkeep for the station; all the essentials needed to keep Shuffle Function and all the rest of the programming on KMSU up and running. The radio station’s goal of $35,000 will be chipped away at by many of the programs the station airs. Shuffle Function, though, is the program that spearheads the station’s efforts and brings in the most money.

The 24-hour marathon is their way to “get people’s attention,” Lind said. Pierce compared it to the same draw of watching Nascar: there’s always the anticipation of witnessing an epic crash. People want to know, she said, “at what point won’t we be able to form complete sentences?”

“There’s no way to prepare or train for it,” said Lind. So once the 24 hours begins, anything can happen.

The hosts have a volunteer group that they call their “team sisters” who come in every year to help with the phones and take down pledge information. Where Lind will have coffee to support him, Pierce has been caffeine free for the past few months now and will be doing her best to “gut it out.”

But what really motivates them through it is the encouragement and donations they recieve from their listeners. “When the lines start lighting up and we get a lot of supporters calling in,” Lind says, “that’s better than any caffeine.”

To encourage regular pledge calls, Lind and Pierce will be offering games and prizes throughout.

Their popular Radio Roulette segment will be returning this year, once at 9 a.m and once at noon, offering whoever calls in a chance to pick a number assigned to a random K-Tel record to then play a mystery song chosen by chance.

Pledge drive gifts are also available, including T-shirts, hats, music collection and the very desired ‘become program director for the day’ prize.

More information on the pledge drive is available at

The entire version of this story can be read in a print copy of the Mankato Free Press. Call the Mankato Free Press at 625-4451 or (800) 657-4662 to find out how to purchase a print copy. The Free Press also prints select stories online at

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