By GWEN SISSON
For those who can’t make it to the Kentucky Derby, Starkville’s Junior Auxiliary is giving residents the chance to wear their favorite hat and raise money for children throughout Oktibbeha County.
Jamie Perry, co-chair of the event, said the party begins at 4 p.m. on May 7, at the home of Larry and Janet Mullins. Tickets are $40 each and can be purchased from any Junior Auxiliary member or from Occasions, George Sherman Clothiers or Kim’s Hallmark. The event is open to the public.
Cocktails and hor d’oevuers will be served poolside and music will be provided by Party of Five. Croquet and horseshoes will be available for anyone interested, and televisions will be available for watching the Kentucky Derby with coverage beginning at 5 p.m.
Perry said there will also be opportunities to donate to specific JA projects during the party for anyone interested in “betting” on the race.
“Derby attire is appropriate and hats are obviously encouraged,” Perry said. “We will even have a judging for ‘Best Hat’ and ‘Most Dapper.’”
Perry said the purpose of the event is to raise money for all Junior Auxiliary projects as well as honor business and corporate sponsors. Proceeds from the event will be used for Junior Auxiliary projects such as Adopt-A-Class, Child Assistance, Safety Town, JA Pals, Stuff the Sleigh and Girl Talk.
“Junior Auxiliary’s major fundraiser for the past seven or eight years has been ‘Go Fish’ and the chapter felt like it was time for something new,” Perry said.
Perry said there was interest in doing a more dressy affair as well as changing the event from a fall event to a spring event.
“A Kentucky Derby party seemed like a natural choice and something new and different for the Starkville community,” Perry said.
Mary Love Tagert, current Junior Auxilary president of the Starkville chapter, said JA is made up of a group of women who are committed to being active community participants and leaders.
“Our particular goal as JA volunteers is to help better the lives of the children of Oktibbeha County and we hope this event will be a fun way for the community to help us achieve that goal,” said Tagert.
For more information about the event, contact Perry at firstname.lastname@example.org .