The annual Forest Park Forever Hat Luncheon was held June 8th at the World’s Fair Pavilion. 2017 marked the 27th anniversary of the popular event which is hosted by the Women’s Committee of Forest Park Forever. As the largest fundraiser for Forest Park, this year’s event raised $450,000 towards the restoration and maintenance of the park.

Lesley S Hoffarth, P.E., Forest Park Forever President and Executive Director, said: “We are so thrilled to have 1,200 fans of Forest Park attending our Hat Luncheon. Their support helps us care for this amazing place.”

The guests arrived to cocktails and judging for the Hat Contest, followed by a sit down lunch with centerpieces provided by area florists. The Gateway Men’s Chorus performed as guests arrived as well as during lunch.

Emcee Carol Daniels of KMOX, introduced St Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson who joked with the crowd that she was wearing her “mayoral hat” for the event. Vanessa F. Cooksey and Carolyn G. Farrell were this year’s co-chairs. Presenting sponsors included: Edward Jones, Emerson, Judy Jones, Stifel, and Wells Fargo Advisors.

The Hat Contest, sponsored by Stifel, awarded winners in the following categories: Best Table Theme, Dapper Dudes, Fascinator, Romantic, Vintage, Whimsical, and People’s Choice. Judges for the contest were Cheree Berry, Shannon Berry Meyer, Simon Kelly, Sheila Little-Forrest, Krista Tolbert, and Laurie Waters. Towards end of the event, winners graced the stage showing off their stunning headwear.

Photos by Christina Kling-Garrett