Another season of world class racing is upon and with it, some of the best parties of the year. As fans from around the world poured through the gates of the Race Course on Friday morning, finishing touches were underway at the Rail Pavilion where Marylou Whitney and John Hendrickson hosted their Annual Opening Day Luncheon. On a day full of tradition, the luncheon feels like a Who's Who of Saratoga, with Mrs. Whitney and Mr. Hendrickson greeting old friends as everyone waits in anticipation to raise their glasses and toast to 'and they're off in Saratoga!" The guests at the luncheon all looked spectacular, with Mrs. Whitney resplendent in a yellow and white floral dress, pearls and matching hat, and Mr. Hendrickson in a pale pink jacket and printed tie.
Jane Wait was by Mrs.Whitney's side as were Maureen and Ed Lewi while guests sat down to nibble on a buffet lunch of salads and light fare, perfect for the warm day. In attendance were Charles and Candace Wait, along with son Charlie and his wife Natalie, who with a baby due in mid-August, absolutely glowed in a fitted maroon dress.
Joe and Gloria Dalton, Mike and Linda Toohey and Bill and Susan Dake sat together chatting about the season, while nearby our wonderful predecessor Jeanette Jordan was enjoying the luncheon with friends.
Heather Mabee was spotted chatting with her Aunt Linda Miller, there with her husband Leverett Miller, who are the owners of T-Square Stud, a thoroughbred horse farm in Florida. They were visiting from Palm Beach and it was a happy surprise reunion for Heather and Linda who were reminiscing about their summers in Saratoga, after the luncheon Heather was on her way to a second reunion in Boston to see her old college classmates.Meanwhile, Saratoga was buzzing with events leading up to opening day including Heather and Brian Straughter’s 4th Annual Finest Fillies, held on Thursday at Vapor Night Club. Participants like Jim Lavigne, Natalie Sillery, Colleen Carlson, Todd Shimkus, Susan Halstead raced their way to raising over $20,000 for local non-profit Jake’s Help from Heaven. Across town, Silverwood Home and Gallery hosted a huge crowd who came to see artist Tom Myott’s latest art opening, featuring his classic racing inspired pieces, brought to life through his signature dots, dashes and loose strokes.