The race meeting was also a fundraiser for Dolly’s Dream, the foundation that was established in memory of Amy (Dolly) Everett, who, at the age of only 14, took her own life after an extended period of bullying and cyberbullying.
Dolly left behind her parents, Tick and Kate, and her sister, Meg, who are now focused on using the money that has been donated by the community to help prevent other families from going through the same devastating experience. The Everetts, who live and work near Katherine, were guests of honour at the races and, as part of the fundraising, guests were invited to donate a gold coin in order to have a photograph of themselves with the Lexus Melbourne Cup trophy, which tours the country before the race that stops the nation each November.
The first race on the Katherine Cup program was the stock horse race, an event that’s open to station and local horses including sports horses, camp drafters and rodeo horses. The race was dedicated to Dolly’s memory and the competitors were non-professional jockeys riding in station or stock saddles. Meg Everett also took to the saddle to lead the entrants to the starting line.
Guests dressed to the nines for the races and many of them chose to wear blue and sported butterfly motifs, acknowledging Dolly’s favourite colour and member of the animal world she loved so dearly and left too early. At the end of the day, race goers of all ages rated the event a huge success and the organisers were happy to make a generous donation to the Dolly’s Dream coffers.
For more information, visit dollysdream.org.au