LiFT Your Spirits 2020

Dear Friends,

As a worldwide community, it goes without saying that each of us are personally and immediately affected by COVID19; LiFT shares this vulnerability.

In the interest of our greater well being and in keeping with the spirit of our Derby roots, LiFT has made the decision to postpone our annual fundraising gala, LiFT Your Spirits, to September 5th 2020, which coincides with the new date announced by Churchill Downs for the 146th Kentucky Derby. More event communications will be forthcoming.

I DO believe through challenge and adversity we find unity and strength. COVID19 has impacted our common humanity but it also reminds us we are a global society, caring for one another. Our lives are intrinsically connected across countries, continents and diversities. During this time of social distancing and temporary isolation, let us remember how precious we are to one another.

Wishing each of you protection and peace,

Keli Mondello
Co-Founder & Chairman of the Board
LiFT Academy/LiFT University Transition Program


Please join us for the 7th Annual
"Lift Your Spirits at A Roaring Derby!"

This fantastic and fun evening benefiting Learning Independence For Tomorrow (LiFT) is a roaring '20s themed Derby party featuring the live Kentucky Derby viewing on two big screens, open bar, live music, a grand gourmet buffet, an exclusive silent auction and an exciting live auction, all benefiting the students of LiFT Academy and the LiFT University Transition program.

Order Tickets Now


Can't Make It? You Can Still Help!

Returning this year...

A Fun-Filled Speakeasy After Party from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m. as we celebrate the glamour and glitz of the 1920's.  We'll have music, dancing, and all sorts of delectables with an open bar.

  • 5:00 PM DOORS OPEN - Join us for passed appetizers, mint juleps, cocktails, games and other pre-race activities.
  • 6:50 PM (SCHEDULED POST TIME) - The 146th Kentucky Derby will be viewed LIVE.
  • 9:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. - Enjoy a Fun-Filled After Party and go all out celebrating the  speakeasy times of the roaring '20s!! It's time to party like Gatsby!
  • Derby attire is HIGHLY encouraged...even better if accentuated with the glamorous style of the roaring '20s.
  • Activities include a best dressed couples event and a ladies hat contest. 

Over the last several years we have seen the number of children identified with autism and other learning differences surge in the US. As this number grows, the need for supportive academic environments must grow as well. In our own Tampa Bay community, LiFT is responding to this need. 100% of the proceeds from this event will benefit our students at LiFT Academy and LiFT University Transition Program. 

This evening offers a meaningful way to support LiFT's mission to educate children and young adults in our community with neurodiversities including autism, spectrum disorders, Down syndrome, ADHD, and various other intellectual and learning delays.

Please join us for this great night and even greater cause!

Order Tickets Now


If you have any questions or need additional information, please contact Sandi Geller, sgeller@liftacademy.org or call 727-258-7659.


Interested in being more involved? Please see our sponsorship levels here.