The Third Annual Progressive Dinner Party, hosted by the McPherson Museum and the McPherson Opera House, is getting those attending in the Irish spirit.

"It is right before St. Patrick's Day, so we've made that part of the theme, but not overall. It's not an Irish dinner, but we've just picked that up and there will be green decorations," said Anna Ruxlow, director of the McPherson Museum.

The night will begin with appetizers at 6 p.m. on March 15 at The Clayworks, located at 107 N. Main St, sponsored by Home State Bank & Trust and The Clayworks.

"Last year they (Clayworks) did dessert and the opera house did appetizers. The reason why the dinner is at the museum this years is due to space," Ruxlow noted.

After appetizers, attendees can head over to the museum, located at 1111 E. Kansas Ave., for a sit-down plated dinner, which consists of a sliced beef brisket with Irish cream beef sauce, mashed potatoes, steamed vegetables and a roll.

This year, the museum and opera house decided to extend the time of the dinner so attendees don't feel rushed, along with a new caterer.

"We extended the time so people had more time at their leisure. We are also having Knackies Catering & BBQ helping us out for the evening," Ruxlow said.

For those who crave a glass of wine with fine dining, wine will be offered at the Clayworks and the museum.

"Sometimes when people have a nice meal like that, you want a glass of wine. We have gotten sponsors that will take care of the wine for us," Ruxlow noted.

When guests are finished with their meal, the next stop is dessert at the opera house, located at 219 S. Main St. Guests can enjoy Irish coffee while listening to Irish music.

"Those will be options if people want to indulge. We will also have regular coffee and an assortment of desserts," said Diane Fallis, business director of the opera house.

Tickets cost $50 per person, and proceeds go toward operating costs of both the museum and opera house. Only 90 tickets are being sold and are available to purchase until March 12.

"I've been encouraging people who know they can't go or are busy, but want to support us, to buy a ticket and pay it forward. Give it to someone in who normally wouldn't get to enjoy something like this," Ruxlow added.

"I've had people say to me, 'that's an expensive ticket for a dinner.' It's not just a dinner. It's a night out and an experience. It's not meant to be sit down, eat dinner and go home, it'll be an experience," Fallis said.

Last year, the event raised $2,200 for both the museum and the opera house.

"That's a utility payment for one month for both of us. That's one month we don't have to come up with funds from elsewhere," Ruxlow added.

For Fallis, continuing this tradition is a way to bring old and new faces to experience the unique atmosphere the evening has to offer.

"It's a great way for the community to come together. For guests visiting McPherson, it’s a way for them to take advantage of seeing these three spaces and seeing what they have to offer and supporting us. We both need financial support, so fundraisers like this really help us a lot," Fallis noted.

Ruxlow is proud to continue the third annual dinner, as it showcases the support of the community.

"It has been very successful, it's very enjoyable. People call me and tell me how much they enjoy getting to come to different places. We set the dinner where the fossils are in the museum and people enjoy eating out there — it has a certain ambiance about it," Ruxlow said.

For more information, call the museum at 620-241-8464 and the opera house at 620-241-1952.

Contact Brooke Haas by email at or follow her on Twitter @ MacSentinel.