Men in seersucker suits. Women donning their finest hats. Bartenders pouring up Mint Juleps…
On Saturday, May 7, 2016, Hotel Indigo in College Park, GA was filled with men and women in celebration of the Kentucky Derby. The fellas came out dressed to impress with seersucker suits (not just pants or blazers–suits), bowties, and the finest shoes. Not to be outdone by their male counterparts, the ladies sported big hats, sundresses, and stilettos.
As soon as you walked into the beautiful lobby of Hotel Indigo, you were offered the oh-so-appropriate Mint Julep with an extra splash of champagne. The aromas from the delicious spread of food enticed as guests were greeted by the event staff. And what a vision! A beautiful cake created by CEO Custom Cakes to celebrate the Kentucky Derby was on display tempting everyone on diets to forego them.
The food was divine to say the least. The presentation was flawless and catered to all walks of life. Even though I don’t eat pork, I did that day! It was so good too! Perfectly tender, it melted in my mouth and the seasoning coupled with the jelly that accompanied it tantalized my taste-buds. They had mini desserts for those of us who embrace adulthood by indulging in sweets prior to eating more savory options. I will say this–no one left hungry!
The weather agreed with the event which was perfect since there were three areas to enjoy it in. There was a room dedicated to “bidding” on the horseraces and a patio area for the cigar connoisseurs by Cigaros of Georgia. I’m not a smoker but I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that the scent was delicious when you went outside. It wasn’t too hot and the patio furniture encouraged interaction. And there was bourbon by J.R. Revelry. Quite possibly THE best bourbon that I’ve ever tasted in my life. As in I can’t drink any other bourbon besides this in my life. This is the bourbon that’s in those fancy carafe’s that you see in movies that people drink without mixing it with something because it’s just.that.smooth. Best part? It’s locally owned!
Besides eating and drinking, there were other things to participate in as well. There were raffles for some rather amazing gifts. Auctioned off were hotel stays, gift boxes, gift certificates and more. I’ve never “bet” on a horse or anything before but I did it that day! And I won! There were three races that attendees could “bet” on. There was a mock betting window and everything. This was a lot of fun–especially since I won two of the three races!
Who doesn’t love a good photobooth? Ok, so all women pretty much love photobooths and we drag our men in there to take goofy photos with us. But the spread was great! There were costumes that catered to both men and women and the pictures came out great! They kept copies of all the photos taken to put into a book for people to sign as a keepsake for the event which I thought was a nice touch.
There were prizes awarded based on what you wore so please believe that next year my husband and I will be dressed to the nine’s ready to win! There was a hat contest where all the ladies showed their hats off. There was also a best dressed couple contest. I loved this! My husband and I have been married for 2 years but this gave us some great #couplegoals because these duos came out coordinated, grown, and classy! Who needs to meet and network on the golf course when you can do it at a derby celebration?
This was a good time had by many but it wasn’t for naught. The proceeds of this beautiful event benefited the South Fulton Arrow Youth Council. Arrow is a rigorous leadership training program for students 13-22 with a simple mission: Vision + Hard Work = Students Success.
Prior to this event, I didn’t know about the Arrows (what they affectionately call themselves), but as a mother of two whose passion is children, this charity is close to my heart. It takes a village to raise a child and this charity provides just that–the positive village to raise upstanding children. Check out their website to learn more about their core values and how you can help.
The First Annual SOFU Charity Kentucky Derby Soiree was a great success and I can’t wait for next year!