Far Hills Race Meeting celebrates 100th anniversary

Kensi Garvin, Athlete of the Issue editor/staff writer

On Saturday October 16th, the 100th Far Hills Race meeting was held, or better known as “The Hunt.” 30,000 attendees including local residents and visitors from all over Far Hills filled Moorland Farms with trucks loaded with hay bales and good spirits. After a two year hiatus due to COVID-19, fans were excited for what would be the 100th meet.

Senior Norah Tobin who attended the races explained, “It was super fun and great weather until it started pouring on everyone, but it was still a great time with my friends.” 

As people piled in on the morning of October 17th, vendors, local food trucks and tailgates surrounded the farm continuing with an ambiance of the fall tradition. Attendees made sure to arrive decked out in their best plaid, preppy, and sophisticated outfits. Some typical outfits for boys may include khaki pants, a flannel or button up shirt and vest. The girls outfits vary year upon year bringing in the new trends each time. This year, some popular styles included leather, sweater vests and button up shirts. “The Hunt” style attire returned in a big way for the 100th meet. Students of Bernards High School put on their best attire ahead of the races.

Students also had the privilege of seeing Senior Kaleigh Reaves sing the national anthem to start off the races. Kaleigh recaps her singing of the national anthem as “incredibly nerve wracking, as [she] hasn’t performed for more than a few hundred people in the past, nonetheless over 30,000! An overall once in a lifetime experience!!” Kaleigh’s performance was also broadcasted on FS2 (Fox Sports 2 Network). Fox Sports 2 streamed the races for three hours, the first time it has ever been broadcasted. The races were also produced by The New York Racing Association, and aired for those who couldn’t make it. As locals attend to watch the horses, the steeplechase races that took place assisted six beneficiary groups to support local healthcare organizations. Some of those groups this year included, RWJBarnabas Health, Community in Crisis and more. In total, the Far Hills Race Meeting has raised over $18 million in past years to local health care organizations. 

After a great day of racing and fun, the Hunt saw a downpour late in the afternoon. Attendees ran to their cars in an attempt to avoid the rain, and Bedminster saw major traffic late that afternoon. As last year’s cancelation was a huge blow to many families, the return of the Far Hills Races was a success.