It was all sunshine and smiles on Saturday as guests arrived at the first ever “Bacon, Brews and Brims’ at the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame. This inaugural event attracted quite the crowd with its fun and festive theme, with close to 300 attendees coming to enjoy Derby Day in style and raise money for the National Museum of Racing. Upon arrival, guests were greeted with a perfectly mixed mint julep and an opportunity to snap their picture in the winner’s circle, standing next to a gorgeous Kentucky Derby trophy, awarded to Sunday Silence in 1989. Saratoga Trunk owner Natalie Sillery was also on hand with milliner Karen Sewell and some of her stunning hats and fascinators, ready to assist any of the ladies who had come sans-brim.
Committee members Alysa Arnold, Caroline Cardone and Katie Nemer all sparkled in their race day attire and ushered attendees into the museum to begin sipping and sampling. There were nearly 30 different vendors set up throughout the Museum and guests were able to stroll through the exhibits sipping bourbon, moonshine and craft beers while also stopping to taste sweet and savory bacon dishes. Several attendees were also overheard saying how pleased they were to have come to the event, as it was their first trip to the Racing Musem and how impressed they were with its scale and depth. The bacon themed fare was a huge hit and people gobbled up items from Druther’s fried bacon-wrapped string cheese with smoky marinara and arugula pesto to bacon peanut brittle from Longfellow’s, perfect bacon wrapped dates with manchego cheese from Boca Bistro and Kettle Belle cookies from Plum Dandy.
Both a best bacon dish and best dressed award were handed out before the race went off, with Berrylicious Bouquets winning for their chocolate covered bacon bark and Caroline Cardone taking home the best dressed award for her equestrian inspired Ralph Lauren wrap dress.
The Museum’s Hall of Fame room made a fitting backdrop for one of horse racings’ biggest events and guests, including the beloved Tom Durkin, packed in to watch it go off. Watching American Pharaoh take home the win and showing their support for this inaugural event were Mike and Linda Toohey, Stephanie and Dave Collins, Heath and Jeff Ames, Jen and Kyle Perry, Amy and Jared Cantanucci , Marcus and Julie Fuller, Rick Partyka and Jacob Hopper.
Also spotted enjoying the festivities were Erika Browne, Alyssa McLenning, Bo Goliber, Dennis McGowan, Erica McCarthy, Matt Tyler, Amy Preston, Andrew Parsons, Tressie Lafay, Alice Lakian and Matt Dalton.
After the event, we caught up with Hilary Hurley, the Director of Development for the Racing Museum, who was delighted with the day’s outcome, telling us “It was a beautiful, fun and thrilling day for the Museum's inaugural event. We are grateful to the community, vendors, and friends that came out to celebrate the kick-off of the racing season in style, while generating critical new dollars for the Museum. We look forward to next year's event, and welcoming another fabulous track season!’ Bacon, Brews and Brims netted $15,000 for the Museum, which will go towards educational programs and new exhibits.