VERNON, NJ- Pass It Along hosted their first annual Night At The Races event on Friday, November 13, 2015 at the Red Tail Lodge in Mountain Creek, Vernon. Approximately 450 people were there for the races and for a featured performance by local favorites, From Good Homes.

A Night at the Races is a themed fundraiser that uses real races that have been pre-recorded and narrated by top announcers. The night had a Kentucky Derby “feel” and those that attended certainly dressed to impress. Big hats, bright colors and the thrills of the race were hard to miss! The band played two sets and kept everyone going on the dance floor.

Pass It Along was able to raise over $40,000 from the event. All proceeds will be used to fund and expand the workshop series that Pass It Along provides at no cost to both middle schools and high schools titled “Discover Your Passion & Purpose”, in which the topics of Self-Awareness, Gratitude and Service are explored through group discussion, experiential exercises, media and interactive games.

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 “It is with heartfelt gratitude that we extend to everyone who attended, donated and is simply a part of our organization: a great big thank you!” Diane Taylor, CEO & founder of Pass It Along, said “Your time and your support make it possible for us to do what we do! We have seen our program change teen’s lives in a real and meaningful way and we thank you again for your wonderful and impressive generosity.”

Proceeds will also be used for the various leadership programs throughout the year that Pass It Along has been offering since 2001, as well as the afterschool club with volunteerism opportunities that both the students and members of the community are then given the opportunity to participate.

Susan Earl, Committee Chair for the event said, “The night was filled with laughter, good music, dancing, great food and exciting races.” She also thanked all of her committee members and other evening volunteers. “An event like this one needs a solid team you can depend on-without them this event would not have been possible.”

Thanks to the generosity of Mountain Creek as the presenting sponsor, the Red Tail Lodge proved to be a fantastic location for the event. The VIP Lounge sponsored by Pass It Along’s Visionary Sponsors had an ambiance to be envied, with many General Admission tickets being upgraded that evening. Visionary Sponsors include Orthopedic Specialty Group, Specialty Surgical Center, Brazil Brothers, Newton Medical Center and Thor Labs.

The event also had well over $20,000 in prizes and silent auction items- some of the most sought after were the: J. Thomas Jewelers two separate $1,000 gift certificates, NJ Devils tickets plus a ride in the Zamboni, Eastern Propane’s outdoor heater, Sussex Bike’s two lady cruiser bikes, Brooklyn Nets tickets, gym and pool memberships to local gyms and spas, and many more.

The food during the event came from several of the local restaurants. Pass It Along wants to thank The Wheelhouse by Krave, Upstream Grille, Tanti Baci, Perona Farms for providing all the different stations at the Red Tail Lodge allowing all those that attended to try different types of cuisines throughout the evening.

They also thank Mrs. Damico & the Sparta High School Baking Department, Sodexo and Café Pierrot for their delicious cookies and deserts.

The planning committee is already working on the Night At The Races event for 2016. For more information contact Lorena Sergent lorena@passitalong.org or visit their website:  http://www.passitalong.org/