BALTIMORE — On Sunday, May 28, 2017, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., Epsilon Omega chapter and the Epsilon Omega Foundation hosted the 5th Annual AKA Day at the Races at Pimlico Race Course. The event boasted over 300 guests and included a lavish buffet brunch, a silent auction, a raffle, and live horse racing all in the name of charity.
This year, WBAL’s news anchor, Jason Newton, served as the guest emcee of the very popular “Hat-itude” contest where attendees donned beautiful hats and fascinators with gloves to complete the winning look.
“The Epsilon Omega chapter just celebrated its 95th Anniversary, and one of the first ways in which the charter members began giving back to the Baltimore City community was to establish a college scholarship fund. This event puts the fun in fundraising and supports the vision of our charter members by continuing to help students from our city go on to pursue their dreams of higher education. We are very proud that for 95 years our chapter has assisted students from our city in achieving their professional goals by awarding a four-year college scholarship to students who have gone on to become attorneys, doctors, professors, nurses and even a marine biologist,” said event Chairman Cylia Lowe-Smith, Esq. who created the event five years ago.
The event has grown every year and is a very popular component is the Epsilon Omega Scholarship Fund Raffle, which gives guests an opportunity to win great prizes for a great cause.
This year’s co-chair Shante Jones along with Erinn Gross and Tiffany Wallace added a silent auction that was very well received, and all the proceeds from the raffle and silent auction went to Scholarship Fund.
The success of this fundraiser is due in large part to the wonderful partnerships that have been established with local businesses such as Mano Swartz Furs, Charles “Chizel It” Harris, Basignani Winery, and Margie Hicks Custom Made Unique Hats; all have supported the Day at the Races with generous donations every year since its inception.
With the popularity of the event steadily increasing, growing year-after-year, this year’s affair again included guests from the Maryland, District of Columbia and Virginia area along with guests from as far as New York, Pennsylvania and even Atlanta, making the 5th Annual event so popular it sold out weeks in advance!
There were also a number of very special guests such as the International Secretary of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. Mrs. Charletta Wilson Jacks who served as the guest judge for the Hat-itude contest!
“Now more than ever is the time for a laser focus on increasing opportunities for excellence in education. The Epsilon Omega Foundation is to be applauded for accomplishing this task and hitting the bull’s-eye,” Jacks said.
In addition to hosting a current International Directorate member, several other former board members were in attendance to show support for this great cause, including: 27th North Atlantic Regional Director Regional Director, Erma Barron; the 29th North Atlantic Regional Director, C. Edith Booker; former International Secretary and current International Risk Management Chairman, Susan Simms Marsh; and former Undergraduate Member at Large and current North Atlantic Representative to the International Standards committee, Jacquie Jones.
“It was truly an honor to have so many current and former leaders in attendance.” Lowe-Smith remarked. “Alpha Kappa Alpha has grown to over 75,000 active members in 1,006 chapters throughout the world and to have the support of our leadership time and time again in our city is truly appreciated.”
Other noteworthy guests included: North Atlantic Representative to the International Membership Committee, Wanda King; North Atlantic Representative to the International Protocol Committee, April Hamilton; and the presidents of nine local AKA chapters.
The Epsilon Omega Foundation, Inc. is a non-profit and tax exempt, 501 (c) (3), corporation established to acquire resources to support and promote programs and services to meet the changing needs of citizens of the Baltimore metropolitan community.The Foundation was created and incorporated in 1991 with the mission to assist the Epsilon Omega chapter to meet the challenges of the community through service, education, and cultural development. For more information visit: