Belmont Child Care Association hosted its third annual Spring Fling Hat Luncheon and Fashion Show at The Garden City Hotel on May 31.
The gala event, attended by 265 guests, raised funds to contribute to the care and education of the sons and daughters of New York thoroughbred racing backstretch workers who would not otherwise have the means for trusted and quality child care.
“Our mission is to provide a safe, supportive and academically inspiring environment. We are committed to promoting early childhood education, molding young minds and encouraging the fulfillment of dreams,” said Joanne K. Adams, executive director, Belmont Child Care Association (BCCA). “The Spring Fling is one of our most important events of the year. We honor individuals from the local community and the thoroughbred racing industry who give their time and resources to BCCA. As we raise funds, we also have fun. Guests wear hats to the luncheon as they do to the races. They enjoy a seasonal fashion show, buy raffles and bid in a live auction. The top item is part-ownership of a thoroughbred racing horse.”
The honorees at this year’s Spring Fling Hat Luncheon were Nancy Kelly and Roberta Doheny. Nancy Kelly is the 2018 BCCA Thoroughbred Horse Racing Industry Honoree. For more than 30 years, the Westbury resident has raised awareness and funds for charities associated with industry. Formerly with The Jockey Club and New York Racing Association (NYRA), she has been a board director of BCCA since its inception in 1998.
Roberta Doheny is the 2018 BCCA Community Honoree. The life-long Point Lookout resident is an owner and operator of a fifth-generational business, Scotty’s Fishing Station on Reynolds Channel, and the Buoy Bar Waterfront Grill, providing a unique and memorable experience for BCCA children to learn about fishing techniques and water safety at the annual Scotty’s Fishing Fun Event.
In homage to the longstanding hat-wear-ing tradition at horse races, guests always wear hats to the Spring Fling. The fashionable fundraiser, held one week before the annual Belmont Stakes, includes a seasonal fashion show and auction where guests may bid for part-ownership in a thoroughbred racehorse.
Spring Fling sponsors are The Garden City Hotel, Jackson Family Wines, Neiman Marcus and NYRA. Funds are contributed on behalf of key racing events including The Belmont Stakes Carnation, The Preakness Black-Eyed Susan, The Kentucky Derby Rose and The Kentucky Oaks Lily. Top retailers, beauty and health service providers, and the hospitality industry from across Long Island donate in-kind raffles and auction prizes. The Garden City Chamber of Commerce is also a donor.
BCCA, a 501c3 nonprofit organization was established in 1998 to create a child care center, Anna House, at Belmont Park providing early childhood education and development programs for the children of New York thoroughbred racing backstretch workers at Belmont Park, Aqueduct Race Track and Saratoga Race Course.