A Toast to the Speed

The Speed Art Museum’s Keep the Ball Rolling campaign to continue celebrating art for everyone, forever


By Elizabeth Scinta
Photos by Kathryn Harrington and Andrea Hutchinson


As we approach the first Saturday of March, it is usually filled with men searching for their cummerbunds and women selecting their loveliest gowns to grace the halls of the Speed Art Museum. This year is a bit different as the highly anticipated annual in-person Speed Ball will not be taking place. However, the Speed Art Museum has a magnificent alternative for the whole community to engage and celebrate art forever through a virtual experience with a few surprises in-store. 

The Speed Art Museum implemented The Keep the Ball Rolling campaign as a way to continue to fundraise, as the Speed Ball is typically the museum’s largest annual fundraiser and keeps the community engaged, explained Matthew Schuhmann, the Associate Director of Advancement at the Speed Art Museum. “Being able to still provide some kind of virtual event for the community to celebrate while raising those critical dollars for the mission of the museum is incredibly important,” Schuhmann said.

On March 6, the first Saturday of the month, the Speed will pay tribute to the Speed Ball by hosting a free virtual event entitled “Toast to the Speed: A Celebration of the Keep the Ball Rolling campaign.” The event will be held on the Speed Art Museum’s YouTube Live channel beginning at 7 p.m. and is free to the public; no registration is required for the event. “It’s really to thank the community and thank all of our supporters for continuing to support us during a difficult year. It’s going to have some messages from our Board Chair, our Speed Ball Co-Chairs and some of our leadership. We’ll also have an art presentation from Belgian artist Isabelle de Borchgrave and a special musical performance from Ben Folds,” explained Schuhmann. Yes, you read that right, Ben Folds!

Ben Folds.

The Keep the Ball Rolling campaign will continue until the end of September, so spread the word to friends and family to further your support. Donations can be made on their website here. Schuhmann explained the best way to help support the museum is to celebrate art and visit if you’re comfortable. “We hope that you’ll come and enjoy the Speed. Tell your friends and family about the virtual events we have going on. If you feel comfortable, we are following all of the CDC guidelines to keep the museum safe and clean for people to attend. We want that sense of community; finding ways to celebrate art in whatever way is comfortable for you is a wonderful way to support the Speed right now.”

Just because the Speed Ball isn’t taking place doesn’t mean you can’t still dress to the nines for the Toast to the Speed! In fact, The Voice-Tribune team encourages it! Take a look at one of our recent fashion editorials, Home Couture, for inspiration on how to dress and celebrate at home. Also, keep an eye out for an article in the March issue of The Voice-Tribune for more history on the Speed Ball! 


Toast to the Speed: A Celebration of the Keep the Ball Rolling Campaign
Speed Art Museum YouTube Live Channel
March 6, 2021, at 7 p.m.