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Fur Ball brings 50s style — and money for Watauga Humane Society

DEAD RINGER? Grace Dorsey was all smiles as “Lucille Ball”. Her “I Love Lucy” TV show was a 1950s must-see in many American homes.

Sep. 15, 2019. BLOWING ROCK, NC — Mother Goose would surely have been proud Saturday night. The dogs ran away with more than a couple of silver spoons.

Photographic images by M.J. Keathley, edited by David Rogers for Blowing Rock News

The Watauga Humane Society danced the night away in blue jeans and bobbie socks at the organization’s 22nd Annual Fur Ball Saturday night.

Dr. Tim Koch (soda jerk) and Dr. Bill Cody (“The Fonz”) wasted no effort in living up to their adopted characters.

The Blowing Rock Country Club threw out their dress code by allowing the “sock hop” gala to rock the clubhouse, replete with poodle skirts and levis. “Accessorizing” the event was  an elegant auction, plenty of hula hoops, and jitterbug lessons. 

This year’s Fur Ball also celebrated the Watauga Humane Society’s 50th anniversary.

“We’ve been a fixture in the High Country for many years, helping alleviate the problem of stray, unwanted and unloved dogs, cats, and other animal pets,” said Watauga Humane Society president Alice Roess, “but the need for what we do remains a serious concern in this region. During just the first four months of 2019, we brought 449 animals into our faciity. More than a third of those were strays and almost a quarter more were simply surrendered by their owners or guardians.

Dance instructor Addie Bobbitt and husband Mark Sijthoff (recently married) were in the swing of things…

“According to the latest numbers we have seen,” Roess added, “more than 900 pets have been adopted this year already, thanks to the wonderful support we have from the High Country community.”

The Cats Jumped Over The Moon, Too…

Generous (money) gifts rolled into Humane Society coffers to the sounds of the Lucky Strikes, a popular band in the region, based in Banner Elk. The “fur babies” of the High Country will reap the benefits from Saturday night’s festivities. An estimated 150 patrons of the Humane Society were in attendance and many more had already sent contributions.

Pet “bling”, anyone?

On average, the Watauga Humane Society rescues more than 2,500 animals each year, according to Roess. With an annual operating budget of $760,000, the Watauga County government contributes about $84,000, she noted to Blowing Rock News at the event. Last year, the Fur Ball raised $140,000 and Roess is hoping to top that this year. The remainder of the budget is made up from other fundraising events, such as WinterPaws during Winterfest, private contributions, and small fees from operations for such things as adoptions.

To learn more about the work of the Watauga Humane Society, as well as to get involved, please visit www.wataugahumane.org.



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