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The First Annual Furry Fashion Show Taking Place On The North Fork

Sydney A. Braat

There will be plenty of runway ready cuties. (Courtesy Photo)

The North Fork Animal Welfare League (NFAWL) will host its biggest and first fully sustainable green event of 2019, the First Annual Furry Fashion Show, on Saturday, May 18 from 12 to 4 p.m. Taking place on private estate gardens in Cutchogue, the fundraiser is appropriate for all-ages and includes what is bound to be one of the cutest fashion shows of the season - with pets and handlers dressed in costumes, a delicious luncheon, pet-themed vendors, ice cream, Chinese auction, raffles, and more. Every attendee will receive a goody bag filled with pet-centric items, including a free spay/neuter voucher from NFAWL. The First Annual Furry Fashion Show is further supporting the community by being an environmentally-friendly event with non-plastic, recyclable materials used throughout the day.

"We really wanted to create an event that engaged the whole community and the First Annual Furry Fashion Show does just that," Gillian Pultz, NFAWL Executive Director, noted. "We've invited our volunteers to walk NFAWL's rescue dogs to help promote adoptions. And we reached out to our East End animal shelter partners to invite them to be part of the show to expand their adoptable animals' exposure, further promoting the concept of adoption as the best way to get a companion animal."

All well-behaved pet-friendly pets are welcome to attend the event, and even encouraged to participate. "The Fashion Show is also open to every type of socialized animal - beyond dogs - we expect miniature horses, donkeys, and possibly a parrot or two, filling out the runway lineup," Pultz relayed. Awards and prizes are up for grabs in categories like creativity, pet-person lookalike, and most flamboyant. In addition to the runway ready animals, guests may bring their furry family members to be part of the audience. "We're looking forward to a really fun day for everyone - whether they're watching or participating in the show!" Pultz explained.

This unique fundraiser will help raise the funding needed to complete the $1.4 million renovation project on the new Riverhead Animal Shelter. Community businesses are joining forces to help ensure this event is a success. The Chinese auction items are supported by local wineries, cafes, and a variety of shops, along with over a dozen original artworks donated by the Old Town Art & Crafts Guild in Cutchogue. The extensive local support for the fundraiser further solidifies our community's commitment to saving more companion animals' lives.

"As always, we're thrilled that a large cross-section of our community's private sector is supporting our cause; it underscores how important helping animals in need is to them and their clientele," says Pultz. "We hope local pet-lovers will be joining us in droves to celebrate the kickoff of summer by sharing a wonderful afternoon under the flowering trees with their furry family members and friends. From the original artwork created by North Fork native cartoonist, Rob White (used on all the event's marketing collateral), to the overwhelming support the event is generating from local businesses and organizations, we are excited to have the whole community come out and share in this family-fun filled day!"

Tickets to the event are $50 for adults and $25 for children (ages 5-15). Kids under 5 are free. Reserve your tickets by visiting www.eventbrite.com.

Tickets are also available for purchase at Southold Animal Shelter's front desk (165 Peconic Lane, Peconic, NY 11958). Call for more information: 631-765-1811 ext. 1.

The Furry Fashion Show will take place at 26850 Main Road in Cutchogue. For more information about North Fork Animal Welfare League, visit nfawl.org

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