by marlys good
The Hands Across the Saddle (HATS) fundraiser held Saturday evening garnered a thumbs-up from event-goers, and featured entertainer Gary Mule Deer got rave reviews as he kept the 200-plus attendees laughing and clapping for over an hour.
“Attendance was down a bit, but the money was where it was last year,” said committee member Scott Good. “The whole evening went smooth, the best yet.”
Figures have yet to be broken down into categories for the separate parts of the event, tickets, donations, raffles, heads and tails, silent and live auctions, but more than $60,000 was raised, all of which goes to help people from Park, Hot Springs, Washakie and Big Horn counties who need a helping hand.
Not a negative response had been reported, with one attendee going so far as to call it “the best HATS ever.”
Prep work for 2015’s HATS VII has already begun. Chris Dalin and Robb Howe of Lisa’s Restaurant have volunteered their services (they’ll have to work hard to beat this year’s meal), Pat Erickson and Lilly Cruise, who provided the pre-dinner music, are looking forward to coming back, and “we’re already working on the entertainer,” Good said.
After final figures are in, organizers will evaluate the results to see what “to keep and what to tweak” next year.