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Boys Town North Florida ‘Racing for the Roses’ Spirit of Youth Gala

Dancing for Roses

​Boys Town North Florida was thrilled to host their 17th annual Spirit of Youth Gala, this year debuting a new “Racing for the Roses" Kentucky Derby theme. Throughout the evening more than 200 attendees danced and enjoyed soulful, live music and savored delicious southern cuisine all while honoring our distinguished speakers and awardees. 

After a two-year hiatus, the evening radiated an infectious energy; both returning and new attendees gathered to marvel in the sights and soak up the southern, rustic charm provided by The Space at Feather Oaks. Taking place on May 7th, the day of the Kentucky Derby, the beautifully renovated barn space fostered the perfect derby-evening experience.

Spectators Enjoying the ConcertThe evening featured a brief but impactful program: a heartfelt, deeply personal testimony from youth alumnus Moniece Jackson both inspired and intently engaged the crowd; she shared how her experience at Boys Town North Florida changed the trajectory of her future. Attendees were astonished at Moniece's resilience and passion to give back to a community she was once felt resentful at. Her story reminded the audience of the important work that happens daily at Boys Town. In addition, long-time friends and donors Dale and Pamela Tadlock were honored with the Spirit of Youth award for their contributions and dedication supporting Boys Town over the years.

Boys Towns Employees posing for a pictureUpon conclusion of the program, guests sporting bowties and fascinators enjoyed a livestream broadcast of the 148th Kentucky Derby, cheering loudly for their horse and jockey duo to come out as the victor. For the remainder of the evening, guests soaked up the fabulous food, entertainment and environment while bidding on curated auction items, visiting the bourbon and cigar bars and playing competitive games of cornhole.

Boys Town North Florida thanks the following sponsors and vendors for making the 17th Spirit of Youth Gala one to remember: ​

SPONSORS: Dermatology Associates, Visiting Angels, Walmart, Tally Mac Shack, RJ Young, MDWD Wealth Management Group, Southeastern Plastic Surgery, JTKE, LLC, North Florida Financial, Leon County Sheriff's Office, Akbar Law Firm and McBurrows Law, Sheri and Matt Bryan, Jill and Tim Meenan, Anne and Greg Martin, Abby and Will Pichard, Leslie and Charley Redding, Mark and Sally Rosser.

VENDORS: Tallahassee Nights Live, Crouton and Company, FUMA Cigars, Capital City Bourbon, Fizz & Foam, and SarahVi Photography. Also, Hearth and Soul and Nic's Toggery as contest judges.

We are grateful for the continued support received from our North Florida community and look forward to gathering next year for the 18th annual Spirit of Youth Gala, celebrating Boys Town North Florida's 40th anniversary.

Boys Town - Dancing to the music