Animal lovers encouraged to lend a paw for annual PetWalk

PLATTSBURGH The Adirondack Humane Society has $30,000 in medical bills to cover each year. As a not-for-profit organization, one way they raise money to help cover their expenses is to host their annual PetWalk. The PetWalk began 14 years ago, said Lillian Cassidy, who has served as the treasurer for AHS for the past 10 years. They host the walk each year during National Be Kind to Animals Week. I guess they decided that it would be a good idea to try to celebrate it, said Cassidy. This year, the PetWalk will be held at Melissa L. Penfield Park on Boynton Avenue Sunday, May 4, beginning at 12 p.m. WPTZ News Channel 5 meteorologist Jim Moore will once again serve as honorary chairperson of the event. After registration, Moore will begin with some brief remarks, followed by a message from AHS president Carol Newcomb. Each year, the AHS also has someone from the community give a blessing for all the animals. Then, the walk begins. There are three different ways in which money is raised, said Cassidy. We have a corporate solicitation which goes out and that will typically bring in about $5,000, explained Cassidy. Then we have people who register to walk and they get sponsor sheets and they approach people in the public for money. The final way, said Cassidy, is people pay when they arrive at the PetWalk. There is a $5 pre-registration fee or $7 for those who register the day of the walk. However, the day is not only about the walk. There are also events which put the animals center stage. Awards are given out for the loudest bark, best trick, highest jump, fastest tail wag, and pet/owner look-a-like. Dont think dogs are the only animals allowed. Weve had llamas that have come. Weve had goats, said Cassidy. And a pot belly pig one year. The goal for AHS is to raises $10,000. Some years we have [surpassed the goal] and other years its been just barely over it depending on the weather, Cassidy said. Rain or shine, Cassidy encourages the community to come out and support the AHS. For more information on the PetWalk or to look into animal adoption call 561-PAWS (7297).

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