The event was held on Saturday, May 6, at the Blu Grotto, at Monmouth Park Racetrack, Oceanport, NJ, from 3:30 PM-7:30 PM.
Since 1947, hundreds of local charitable organizations have been recipients of over $10M in grant contributions from MPCF. This year’s Kentucky Derby Party raised nearly $300K to strategically fund local charities related to health, those at risk in the community, and those in need of special services. Apart from the MPCF Director of Operations position held by Debi Heptig, the charity is managed by a volunteer board of trustees, supported by volunteer committees.
Heptig commented, “MPCF is anchored with incredible volunteers who roll up their sleeves and work tirelessly raising funds to strategically benefit local charities. We are continuing the legacy of community giving set forth in 1947 by the founders of MPCF, and there is something really unique and exciting about that! It’s an honor to be a part of MPCF.”
MPCF Executive Board Members; President Maureen Lloyd and Secretary Linda Sirico, served as the 2023 Kentucky Derby Party Co-Chairs. The event honored John and Robin Klein, Executive Chairman of Provident Bank; Chris Martin, and Diane Turton.
Co-Chairs, Lloyd and Sirico commented, “We are truly humbled by the overwhelming community support provided to make this event such a great success. Thank you to our amazing Kentucky Derby Committee, supportive honorees, dedicated board members, sponsor partners, volunteers, and every single person who attended our 18th Annual Kentucky Derby Party! Of course we give special thanks to our Director of Operations, Debi Heptig.”
The day was sunny and temperatures perfect for the elegant, tented affair, which included live entertainment, simulcasting of the Kentucky Derby, with betting available, an open bar and whiskey station, passed hors d’oeuvres, delicious buffet of chef specialties, hat parade and contest, photo booth, horseshoe tournament, live and silent auctions, a 50/50 raffle, lively conversations, lots of laughter, smiles and fun!
The event was emceed by MPCF Trustee and Director of Community Relations for NJ Natural Gas, Thomas Hayes who welcomed everyone to the event and later orchestrated the live auction.
MPCF Trustee, Warren Diamond commented to the guests, “I think this is one of the premier events in the county, everybody just comes out every year, and has a wonderful time…so happy to see everyone smiling, this is a fundraiser that everybody loves, and I am so happy to be a part of it.”
The MPCF Kentucky Derby Party each year gives special recognition and thanks to our Veterans, of which many are sponsored guests for the event. The National Anthem was sung live by vocalist; Gigi Abinader, entertainment was provided by McCoy, Haney and Vanderweerd, featuring vocalist; Dakota Diehl. This year’s Hat Parade & Contest judges were Holly Schult, Silvana Buckley and Perry Beneduce. Winners for the Ladies Hat Contest were “Classy Chassis”-Linda Sirico,”Too Hot to Trot”- Sabine Jarvis,”Bats in the Belfry”-Todd Katz,”Hat-A-Tude”-Marta Quinn,”Ride ‘Em”-Ann Winn,”Dapper Dan” -Terence Wall, Best Couple:”Daily Double”-Lydia & Timothy DiAssi.