"Welcome, the coat check and bunnies are to the right." Although the bunnies were not the Playboy variety, few guests were disappointed since they came to support the four-legged kind anyway. More than 450 animal lovers gathered at the Circuit Center for Animal Friends' 13th annual "Black Tie & Tails: Recycled Pets Are Best" gala Saturday night. The green-friendly party hosted by honorary chairs Rosemary and Howard Loevner was a sold-out success, raising $402,000 for humane programing, including $86,000 for rescue and care of animals.
All the dogs, cats and rabbits that mingled with partygoers were looking for new homes, and 20 lucky dogs and cats found them. "My boyfriend [Dennis Allison] adopted these kittens. Aren't they the cutest things in the world?" purred Victoria Martin as she cuddled her new little friends. But none of the animals went home that night. "We like people to sleep on it and then come to the shelter the next day to pick them up," explained event co-chair Sarah McKean (with PJ Maloney).
The other co-chairs Tracey Eakin (with Larry) and Cindy Russell (with Andy) and the event's honorary artist "Wayno" (Wayne Honath) made the rounds during the VIP cocktail hour. Unleashing their passion for pets were board chair Marleen Ashton, Animal Friends director David Swisher, WTAE's Andrew Stockey, DA Stephen Zappala with Mary, Bob Fragasso, Catherine and Mark Loevner, Judy and Dr. Ron Linaburg, Joel and Mia Bernard, and so many more.