saratoga_hat_day_2014_hat_entries_signing_in_.jpg

saratoga_hat_day_2014_an_entrant_signing_in.jpg

saratoga_hat_day_2014_Donna_Cerasuolo_close_up.jpg

saratoga_hat_day_2014_Kathleen_Christopher.jpg

saratoga_hat_day_2014_fashionable_saratoga_closeup_entrants_.jpg

saratoga_hat_day_2014_kids_contestants.jpg

saratoga_hat_day_2014_coors_light_guy.jpg

saratoga_hat_day_2014_composite1.jpg

saratoga_hat_day_2014_composite2.jpg

saratoga_hat_day_2014_composite3.jpg

Saratoga Hat Day 2014

fashionable saratoga entrants

Entrants in the "Fashionable Saratoga" category.

By Kaitlin Resler

Once again the ever-stylish Kaitlin Resler was AOA's representative on the judges' panel for the Saratoga Race Course's hat contest, which was this past Sunday. Here's her recap -- with photos -- of the annual Saratoga event.

I've just started to get those pangs of worry that summer is moving fast, that it's going to be over any minute, and then I realized that track season in Saratoga just started, and there's plenty of time! That's really just the summer activity touchstone that marks the height of summer, mid-July and all.

This past Sunday I got to judge the hat contest again, with a little more insight into what to expect (last year was my first time at the contest, and my first time to the track since I was a little kid!), and yet was still blown away by all the contestants!

There are a bunch of photos above in large format -- click or scroll all the way up.

This year it seemed there were a few less entries than last (last year was the 150th anniversary of the track, so it was a pretty big turn out), but it was still a well attended event. It was hot, but not too hot, sunny with fluffy cartoon clouds, a perfect day to mill around. In between popping into the booth with fellow judges Leigh Hornbeck from the Times Union and Heather from 103.1, I took a few walks to take some quick snaps of a few entries.

Donna Cerasuolo

One of the first people I gabbed with was Donna Cerasuolo, in an outfit that was perfectly coordinated with her hat, she ended up placing in the 'Fashionable Saratoga' category. From Gloversville, Donna crafts hats often, letting the hat design come forward as it evolves (this is her second year entering the hat contest) and shares her creations in a display she titles "Waltz of the Hats," a reference to her dancing years!

saratoga_hat_day_2014_shay_tracey_hat_back.jpg

One of my favorite hats was in the kid's entries, by Shay Tracey, in a hat she also made herself! Shay enjoys riding herself, and her hat was themed in support of Rosie Napravnik, the only female jockey this year. This is her first year entering the hat contest, and she ended up placing in the kid's category!

Kathleen Christopher

Not in the contest, but sporting a pretty amazing hat in support of Saratoga and the contest, Kathleen "The Hat Lady" Christopher made her hat out of foam shapes (saved by friends over the years--her hats have won the contest 4 times, some worn by her and some by her son or husband) and pictures of interesting or famous personalities -- all centered around a baseball hat sporting signatures from all the people pictured!

It was really hard to miss the tall, shiny, trophy-like pagoda hat that surfaced around the area every now and then. 2014 is the year of the horse, according to the Chinese calendar, and for her 3rd year entering the contest, this one was one of the winners for the "Uniquely Saratoga" category!

kids category

Judging this is always pretty hard, so many people put so much effort into their designs (one girl had dry ice in her hat so that the horse on the top appeared to be leaving everyone in it's dust!), and the creativity really shines. Lots of fashionable options show up--fascinators seem to really be the thing lately, along with a few vintage confections (always a favorite with me), and of course sun hats float around in abundance.

One of the sole male entries sported an outfit, bordering on armor, built out of Coors Light boxes and cans -- he was a huge crowd favorite, but in the end we chose entries that really seemed to illustrate the "Saratogian" aspect of the contest. Another of the winners popped up on her pointe shoes, which also circled her hat, a nice reference to the ballet and ballet shoes adorning Broadway downtown.

The whole day was a real blast! The contest always draws a good mixture of first timers--some from far away, many from local areas--and really has a great sense of fun and camaraderie. I only got the tiniest sliver of sunburn, met some more great local people, made sad eyes as we left without a Shake Shack burger (next time), and was totally inspired to step up my hat game!

Kaitlin Resler writes about all the pretty things at All This Happiness

Earlier on AOA:
+ Photos from Hat Day 2013 at Saratoga
+ Shopping Hudson with Jess and Kaitlin

Comments

Katheline 'The Hat Lady' had a photo of my favoite radio announcer David Allen on her hat!

Philip Treacy would be tickled.

Say Something!

We'd really like you to take part in the conversation here at All Over Albany. But we do have a few rules here. Don't worry, they're easy. The first: be kind. The second: treat everyone else with the same respect you'd like to see in return. Cool? Great, post away. Comments are moderated so it might take a little while for your comment to show up. Thanks for being patient.

The Scoop

Ever wish you had a smart, savvy friend with the inside line on what's happening around the Capital Region? You know, the kind of stuff that makes your life just a little bit better? Yeah, we do, too. That's why we created All Over Albany. Find out more.

Recently on All Over Albany

Today's moment of spring

A little more than a week ago Helen sent along a pic of some beautiful robin eggs from her downtown Albany backyard (photo left). And... (more)

Small Change

This is interesting: Small Change is a new crowdfunding site aimed at helping gather funding for small real estate development projects, the kind that banks... (more)

Freedom Park 2017 concert series lineup

The schedule for this summer's series of free concerts at Freedom Park in Scotia is out. As usual, it's a big lineup with multiple concerts... (more)

Upcoming RCHS tours and talks: Troy landmarks, Prohibition, abolition, Aaron Burr's slumber

The Rensselaer County Historical Society has a handful of tours and talks coming up over the next month (or so) that look interesting.. They range... (more)

Drawing: American Music Festival + Peck's Arcade

The Albany Symphony's American Music Festival returns May 31-June 4 in Troy. We have a pair of festival passes and we're giving them away. BUT... (more)

Recent Comments

I've found that anecdotes from neighbors, friends, or internet "strangers" can only take you so far. If you haven't already, I strongly recommend you get out there and visit these schools during the school year, during the school day to get a feel for things. In the last few months, my wife and I have made a series of visits to our local elementary, middle + high-school. During those visits, we had the chance to talk to multiple teachers and see the kids "in action". It was very VERY telling in a lot of ways - both good and bad.

Drawing: American Music Festival + Peck's Arcade

...has 43 comments, most recently from Jessica RW

Experiences to share about Albany schools?

...has 34 comments, most recently from RP

A "self-sustaining, power-generating island unto itself" in Albany

...has 2 comments, most recently from daleyplanit

Albany talking trash over the next month

...has 4 comments, most recently from Sam

They came from the Capital Region

...has 89 comments, most recently from John