Taking place on Saturday, February 1, 2020, at Grand Old House, Hatitude is one of the biggest annual fundraisers for the National Trust for the Cayman Islands, attracting glamorous sets of friends often with their daughters, who get the rare chance to show off their finest hats for the day.
Now in its seventh year, Hatitude has usually been held on a Sunday; but the upcoming 2020 event marks a change from the past.
Nadia Hardie, the National Trust’s executive director, explains: “Traditionally Hatitude has been a Sunday brunch, but this year we are trying a slightly new format to make it more affordable. The theme is ‘High Tea by the Sea,’ and along with the high tea will be the obligatory bubbles kindly sponsored by Jacques Scott. Grand Old House will be serving traditional tea sandwiches, quiche, scones with cream and jam and lovely pastry selections.”
The focus of the day is very much on dressing up for the theme, and Hardie says that all attendees are encouraged to wear hats to the event.
“Guests are encouraged to create their own hats to fit the annual theme, and there is a competition for the best hat, with female, male and children categories,” she says. “We always have a fun raffle as well, and there will be plenty of other surprises, too.”
Women, in particular, love the opportunity to dress up and wear hats, Hardie states, and show off their creativity, all for a great cause — protecting and preserving Cayman’s environment and historical sites across all three islands.
“The hat competition is always fiercely contested!” she confirms. Hardie says that the National Trust encourages families to attend, especially with children.
“We always have a kids’ craft corner, and there are plenty of activities to keep the children busy whilst their parents sit back and relax and enjoy some time with friends in the most beautiful setting,” Hardie says. “It’s always lovely and cool under the new gazebo at the Grand Old House. It’s a lovely afternoon out and not too many events encourage children, so I think parents appreciate being able to bring their kids along to something where they are entertained as well.”
Hatitude is an event that is always well attended, Hardie advises. In January 2019, His Excellency the Governor Martyn Roper and his wife, Elisabeth, attended; and the event was emceed by Cynthia Hew. Last year’s theme was “Birds of a Feather,” and guests were encouraged to style their outfit and hat around Cayman’s wild birds. As a result, a riot of colours, feathers and plumage adorned event-goers’ hats.
“Last year we invited customised photo booth providers Party Booth, and that was greatly enjoyed by many — kids, but most especially the adults! We plan on having them attend again for 2020,” Hardie says.
Proceeds will go towards the great work that the National Trust undertakes, including protecting and preserving wildlife and buildings of national importance and providing tours, hikes and workshops for the public to enjoy.
Author: Stephanie Peacock