Tracy Wil­son Mourn­ing’s youth men­tor­ing pro­gram, Honey Shine, holds the most in­spir­ing event of the sea­son.

Ocean Drive - - Contents - BY LAU­REN EPSTEIN

Fif­teen years ago, Tracy Mourn­ing—mo­ti­va­tional speaker, broad­cast jour­nal­ist, and wife of Miami Heat leg­end Alonzo Mourn­ing— dreamed of show­ing girls in the un­der­served com­mu­ni­ties of Miami-dade County a world of op­por­tu­ni­ties. Since then, her non­profit or­ga­ni­za­tion, Honey Shine, has pro­vided them with in­valu­able ex­pe­ri­ences, help­ing to ex­pand their hori­zons and build their con­fi­dence, cre­at­ing a com- mu­nity of strong young women able to march into the fu­ture. On May 13, Honey Shine holds the an­nual Hats Off Lun­cheon, which raises funds for a sixweek sum­mer camp (with free trans­porta­tion) that of­fers bal­anced meals, swim­ming lessons, art and dance classes, STEM and ro­bot­ics pro­grams, and more—at no cost. Marla Wil­son, the or­ga­ni­za­tion’s na­tional ex­ec­u­tive vice pres­i­dent, tells us about the event and how Honey Shine con­tin­ues to change lives year after year.

What: The 15th an­nual Hats Off Lun­cheon

When: Satur­day, May 13

Where: Loews Miami Beach Ho­tel, 1601 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, 305604-1601; loew­sho­

What’s the high­light of the event? The fash­ion show. We’ve se­lected a num­ber of girls to walk an 80-foot run­way. They’ve each recorded a voice-over that tells the au­di­ence who they are, how long they’ve been in Honey Shine, what Honey Shine means to them, and why they shine. They’re walk­ing the run­way with pur­pose and they’re show­ing you their sense of pride and self-es­teem. Is there a dress code? All the women and men wear a hat, a fas­ci­na­tor— some peo­ple might go Bil­lie Hol­i­day on you and put a gar­de­nia in their hair. It’s all about the hats and the shoes. In your own words, what is the mis­sion of Honey Shine? To en­cour­age the balanc­ing of mind, body, and soul in young girls and women by teach­ing them and speak­ing to them about all the op­por­tu­ni­ties that ex­ist in this world, and hav­ing con­ver­sa­tions about the is­sues they’re fac­ing. It’s re­ally about the char­ac­ter devel­op­ment of the girls. hon­

Scenes from last year’s Hats Off Lun­cheon. ƜƤƧƜƤƯƢƬƞ ƟƫƨƦ ƭƨʃ ƥƞɵƭ: The af­ter­party; (ƥ ƭƨ ƫ ) Tracy Mourn­ing, Olen Kalkus, Linda Coll, and Marla Wil­son at the an­nual award cer­e­mony; a bid­der in the on­line auc­tion; the Honey Bugs fash­ion show; guests...

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