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Fundraiser will put competitors to Missoula County Public Schools test

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Are you as smart as an MCPS student?

That’s the question and the contest for a Thursday, Sept. 27, fundraiser to support Missoula County Public Schools programming.

The event, which is hosted by the nonprofit Missoula Education Foundation, will be held at the MCT Center for the Performing Arts to raise money for the foundation’s enhanced education in MCPS schools.

Missoula Mayor John Engen and actor Eric Pierpoint will host the question-and-answer competition.

The questions are gleaned from MCPS curriculum and other sources.

The lively event is an opportunity for contestants to demonstrate their knowledge and win prizes, and each competitor will receive a bid number to use to respond to the questions.

In the final round, high scorers will compete for the grand prize: a two-night stay at the luxurious Triple Creek Ranch in Darby.

Rules for the contest will be announced the evening of the event, and the audience is advised to come with a sense of humor.

“We won’t be following a particular game show format to the letter,” said organizer and MEF executive director Marta Pierpoint. “We have developed some rules to make the contest a little loose, maybe even chaotic, and hopefully fun.”

Contestants will be able to tap into a “lifeline” team of students from the MEF student board.

Not everyone has to participate in the fun and games as a contestant, Pierpoint said.

“We realize that not everyone wants to be in the spotlight, but that doesn’t mean they can’t join the fun and support the foundation,” she said. “A good audience is as important as the contest and we encourage people to come watch, enjoy some appetizers and bid on some special live and silent auction items.”

The Missoula Education Foundation works with the school district to enhance educational opportunities. The foundation supports the Creative Grants program established in 2008, and provides grants to teachers seeking to launch innovative ideas in the classroom. The foundation also provides scholarships to students who have faced hardship in high school and who aspire to postsecondary education.

Reporter Betsy Cohen can be reached at 523-5253 or at

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