In November 2014, MPA entered into an agreement with Bowling Green State University (“BGSU”) in Bowling Green, Ohio to donate two copies of every piece of printed Vitak-Elsnic music in its inventory to the BGSU Music Library. The donated music is referred to as the “Vitak-Elsnic Collection.” The donation filled 24 boxes and consists of thousands of individual selections. MPA retained all commercial rights to the music as well as all copyrights. MPA and BGSU agreed that “the donation shall be used by Bowling Green State University and its faculty, staff, students and authorized third parties for educational, research or other non-commercial purposes.”
BGSU began the task of archiving the Collection and, with full support from MPA, established a Polka Preservation Fund in November 2015. The university then launched a crowd funding campaign for the Fund that is now permanently established and will be used for
• Ongoing cataloging and processing of donated materials;
• Digitization of materials to assist patrons with access and research;
• Promotional and outreach efforts in collaboration with area ensembles;
• Student travel to perform pieces from the collection or present on polka topics at conferences; and
• Acquisition of related polka materials and reference resources.
The 2015 BGSU crowd funding campaign for the Polka Preservation Fund was the initial effort to provide financial resources for archiving and utilization of the Vitak-Elsnic Collection. The university has developed a brochure that describes the Fund and provides information to potential donors. MPA, consistent with its corporate goals and objectives, has committed to work with organizations and professional musicians, as well as individuals that appreciate the importance of polka to America’s musical heritage, to actively encourage donations to the Fund.