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UPDATE: Bison fan wearing JMU jersey raises more than $15,000 for local school

Published: Dec. 17, 2021 at 5:47 PM CST
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FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) -UPDATE: The GoFundMe dedicated to Central Cass Treehouse has earned more than $15,000. Fundraiser organizer Matthew Fraase said as part of reaching the $15,000 goal his podcast co-host will get a tattoo of his rival team, the Montana Grizzles, when the friends make the trip to Frisco, TX for the FCS championship game.

“The entire FCS community won this week and for years to come” said Fraase, “amazing to see people come together.”

Original:

Hours before the FCS final four playoff game between North Dakota State University and James Madison University, die-hard Bison fan Matthew Fraase wasn’t wearing his usual green and gold, instead, he had on JMU purple.

“I couldn’t be more proud to be wearing it right now,” Fraase said with a smile.

Words, he never thought he would say. Fraase co-hosts a weekly podcast, FCS Fans Nation, where he and others get together to discuss the division they all love. This week a James Madison fan asked the hosts, ‘how much money would it take Matt Fraase to wear a James Madison jersey to the game on Friday?’

While Fraase said he wasn’t interested in the money for himself, his sister-in-law pointed to the Central Cass Treehouse, the school district’s food, and clothing pantry. He excitedly announced the $500 goal. Little did he know, the goal would be met within three hours on GoFundMe.

“I did not expect the firestorm that followed!” said Fraase.

He said the rival team’s fans weren’t satisfied with him wearing just a jersey.

“James Madison fans wanted more...how much to wear a hat...how much to wear socks...how much to through a JMU streamer when we score a touchdown?” Fraase explained.

FCS fans from across the country caught wind of the fundraiser and each new challenge was met, exceeding $12,000 before the playoff game.

Every dollar is going to the students in the Central Cass School District to buy food, hygiene items, clothes, and school supplies. The unique thing about the Central Cass Treehouse, it’s completely anonymous. Students can order what they need from the pantry through an app and have it delivered to their locker during class.

Founder and President of Central Cass Treehouse, Heidi Domier, said the money will go a long way for those students.

“We’re blown away by the support and generosity of the fans,” said Domier.

“People from Virginia to Washington to Illinois to Texas... all over the United States are helping Central Cass,” said Fraase, “I think that’s really powerful.”

The fundraiser isn’t stopping there. Another co-host of the podcast and has said if the GoFundMe gets to $15,000 he will get a small tattoo of the rival team.

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