Utica, NY (WIBX) - Thanks to the money raised at the Mayor's Benefit Gala, two non-profit groups are in receipt of $22,500.00 each. First lady, Sue Palmieri joked about being nervous having to carry around the large checks that were delivered at the Stevens-Swan Humane Society this morning. "I've never carried this much money in my purse in my life! I'm a little bit nervous...took a wrong turn getting here," she said.

This year, the two beneficiaries of the funds are The Children's Museum of History, Natural History, Science & Technology and the Stevens-Swan Humane Society. Marlene Brown, Executive Director at the Children's Museum, says the money will be used to improve some exhibits. She said, "And then the bulk of it it's going in a savings account for the beginning of what's going to be a STEM Center in back of the Museum--Science, Technology, Engineering and Math."

Jerry Kraus, spokesperson for the Humane Society says their portion will help pay for an upgrade at the shelter. This year, the Mayor's Ball raised $62,475.00 for charity. Mayor Palmieri says over 1200 people attended the annual event at the Radisson Hotel in downtown Utica. Giving all the accolades to his wife, Mayor Rob Palmieri said he's already looking forward to next year's Gala and hopes to raise even more money for charity. "It's just a reflection of Utica, New York, and how the people come out, how they participate, how they provide a great, great opportunity for services that are in need," he said.