Nonprofit Action for Animals teamed up with Farm 23 and Footbridge Brewery to raise $1,000 May 29. AFA has only had a pawful of opportunities to have large fundraisers and none until Farm 23 where people could comfortably roam maskless, worry less about distancing and enjoy burgers and dogs while mingling.
Farm 23’s Laura Puchalski donated all proceeds from her Maine blueberry crumb pie with vanilla ice cream to AFA. The bee wery unveiled its new brew “Companion” and its commitment of a portion of proceeds from that brew to AFA.
Brewery co-owners Dan and Pnina Pangburn were set up in their tent for giving out Companion tastings. Pnina was wrapped up in a blanket and Dan was tolerating the cold wind and rain.
“We're having a beautiful time in this wonderful, wonderful warm weather,” Dan jested. “We're trying to give a little more of a diverse audience for Action for Animals by using the beer scene and the craft brew scene ...”
AFA Secretary & Communications Coordinator Faye McNall said turnout was encouraging for the kickoff of the 2021 fundraising season because this summer will be busy with the Butterball-palooza on the Boothbay Common July 18 and an evening cruise aboard Pink Lady with live music Sept. 11.
“Butterball-palooza … is going to be a fair-type event. We're going to have a fortune teller, face painter, events for dogs. We'll bring out all our merchandise and have vendors there as well. Oceanside Golf Resort is going to donate some food for our summer event (and) Liz who runs East Boothbay General Store is going to help us out with catering for the Boothbay event.”
Owen Cox, 11, of Chef Owen’s Odd Kitchen (COOK), supplied the handcrafted dog treats for the day’s festivities. He said his mother’s cooking inspired him to start his Youtube channel nearly two years ago, but the dogs inspired him to concoct his own treats. “I looked up some recipes, got the ingredients and started cooking … I just thought dog treats would be nice for the dogs.”
AFA Founder Giselle Armstrong said Chef Owen will officially make the organization’s dog treats now. It is important for future generations to get involved in protecting animals, she said.
Though the weather could have been better, Armstrong said she and the AFA board are just glad everyone can get out together now. “We've enountered snow storms when we've been out – Pumpkinfest a couple years ago and Halloween – but we've stuck it out. I think people just want to get out and do things.”
Said McNall, “This just being our big opening day for the season, it's wonderful and people are so responsive.”
For more information about AFA Maine, visit www.actionforanimalsmaine.com