We've heard a lot in recent years about the importance of musical experience for students, especially at the middle school level.

However, it's taken a lot of effort to make sure that students can afford instruments, and that's where a local event by the Rotary Club of Missoula is helping.

Now it's your chance to jump in and show support for "In Tune Missoula", which raised over $12,000 last year to help defray the cost of musical instruments for students in Missoula County Public Schools.

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Big results from music education

Groups like the Save the Music Foundation have done studies showing how learning a musical instrument can help students' brain functions, improving cognitive performance and fine motor skills. But there are also additional benefits, such as self-expression, stress relief and confidence building, developing fine motor skills, and helping them with other studies, like math and language.

In Tune Missoula

In 2023, Rotarians decided to take action to make sure all middle school students who'd like to be in a music program have that opportunity.

This year, a special effort is being aimed at organizing a choir camp this summer in Missoula. And the fundraising is expanding to include students at Hellcat Elementary and Target Range.

Fundraiser next week

This year, In Tune Missoula is set for Thursday, April 4th, from 6 to 8:30 pm at Zootown Arts Community Center. Of course, there will be musical performances, including the University of Montana's Connor Racicot Jazz Quartet and Northern Lights.

The event will feature refreshments, with a silent auction including items such as a hand-crafted electric guitar, a vintage banjo, and an overnight stay at Double Arrow Lodge. Also, a private wine tasting for 5 at the Ranch Club.

Tickets are $50 each and are available online.

If you'd like to make a direct contribution to In Tune Missoula, you can contact Treasurer Kathy Schulte.

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Gallery Credit: Chris Wolfe