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Legacy of Love Begins on Track

November 20, 2017

Del Mar, CA … The odds-on favorite at the Del Mar Racetrack on November 18, 2017 was not a horse, but a young San Marcos couple deeply in love. On this warm and sunny, picture-perfect morning, romance was in the air … and at the Don Diego Legacy Brick Fountain at the Del Mar Fairgrounds.

Michael Pettinato, 26, orchestrated his marriage proposal to perfection. First he purchased and customized a brick with a heart inscribed: “Katie Brown, 2017: Will You Marry Me? –Michael Pettinato.” Then he invited their families to “hide” above the Fountain where, promptly at 11:30 am, he entered the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club Stretch Run Gate with Katie, fibbing that he wanted to show her a Don Diego Legacy Brick his mother had bought for installation at the Fountain. Michael led Katie to the spot, unveiled the brick, got down on one knee, popped open up a jewelry box to reveal a gorgeous engagement ring, and popped the question: “Katie: will you marry me?”

Astonished to tears, Katie Brown, 25, screamed, “YES!” As they embraced and kissed, their families cheered. Even race fans walking by who typically would be buried in betting odds applauded and extended their good wishes to the ecstatic couple. The Del Mar Thoroughbred Club graciously hosted the entire Pettinato and Brown families for an afternoon they will not soon forget.

Once Katie caught her breath, the bride-to-be confided, “I’ve been hoping Michael would ask me to marry him. This very morning, I had a weird feeling and thought, ‘Wouldn’t it be cool if he proposed at the track?’ But I had no idea he actually would!”

Michael said that a couple years […]

11/29/17|0 Comments

A Del Mar Fairgrounds Legacy Brick Makes A Unique Holiday Gift

October 19, 2017

Del Mar, CA … Give that special someone a one-of-a-kind holiday gift as unique as the recipient: a personalized Brick permanently enshrined at the Del Mar Fairgrounds’ Legacy Fountain.

Don Diego Legacy Bricks begin at $150. A replica can be purchased to embellish home or office. Information and online purchase are at dondiegoscholarship.org.

The hundreds of customized Legacy Bricks already lining the pathway to the Fountain celebrate people’s lives and commemorate magical moments at the San Diego County Fair and Racetrack. Inscriptions run from the heartfelt to the humorous, together telling a story of cherished relationships and fun times with friends and family.

Don Diego Executive Director Chana Mannen states, “Making the gift even more meaningful, each Brick purchase is a donation that enables the Don Diego Scholarship Foundation to build a better San Diego, one scholarship at a time.”

The Don Diego Scholarship Foundation was named for Don Diego, AKA Tom Hernandez, who served as the Fair’s welcoming goodwill ambassador from 1947-1984.

Since its inception in 1986, the Foundation has awarded approximately $862,000 in scholarships to 204 students and in agriculture education grants. More information is at  dondiegoscholarship.org and facebook.com/DonDiegoScholarship.

10/29/17|0 Comments

Sarah Drown

Oklahoma State University
$10,000
FFA & Spanjian Scholarships

“My mother cried when I told her I’d won not one but two Don Diego scholarships. I plan to pursue a double major in Agriculture Communications and Agriculture Business, with future steps perhaps in ag journalism or law school. When I got involved with FFA, I discovered my passion and my path.”

06/03/17|0 Comments

Kalee Cummings

Claremont McKenna College
$5,000
4-H Scholarship

“I currently am a 4-H State Ambassador helping lead the way for the organization to a global stage. I have come a long way starting at 4-H at age eight when I thought I was just learning to train my dog. Thank you, Don Diego!”

06/03/17|0 Comments

Mary Moreno-Christian

UC Davis
$5,000
Employee Scholarship

“Working as a Camp Del Mar counselor during the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club’s racemeets helped me I became a more effective and independent leader. I plan to major in Engineering and will strive to increase the number of women and Latinas in the STEM field.”

06/03/17|0 Comments

Jessica Xu

MIT
$5,000
Exhibitor/Participant Scholarship

“I served as San Diego Youth Space Program project manager, where I led 20 students from seven high schools to design and build experimental modules sent to the International Space Station. I’ve learned that a positive attitude can make a seemingly insurmountable mountain into a conquerable hill.”

06/03/17|0 Comments

Kyle Murray

Montana State University
$5,000
Junior Livestock Auction Scholarship

“I have won Showmanship awards and Blue Ribbons in Meat Pen Poultry. In 2016, my chickens won 4-H Champion and Reserve Grand Champion honors. Experiencing the enthusiastic support of the community as I took my poultry across the auction block is something I will remember for a long time.”

06/03/17|0 Comments