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Briggs benefit slated

By Staff | Sep 11, 2009

Anne Small, right, and Christine Parfitt are co-chairs of the animal shelter benefit auction, which benefits animals like Hans, the dachshund and Henry the kitty.

The Briggs Animal Adoption Center (BAAC) and Spay Today will host the third biennial Whiskers and Wags Woof It Up! silent auction and fun raffle on Sept. 25 at Charles Town Races & Slots.

The 6 to 9 p.m. event, featuring heavy hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar, will be held in the Skyline Ballroom. Dress is casual.

Shepherdstown’s Anne Small and Christine Parfitt are co-chairwomen of the Auction Committee.

Small said last week local businesses and individuals have come forth with some impressive and valuable auction items, including a Mexico resort stay, airline tickets, private wine tastings and limited-edition artworks and jewelry.

“Really, we’ve gotten some amazing donations,” Small said.

Local auctioneer Marty Kable will conduct the auction.

Caroline Gregg, a professional harpist from the Washington, D.C. metro area will provide music. She played with the National Symphony Orchestra for 15 years touring Japan, Europe and South America and accompanied the Washington Opera on their tour to Japan with Placido Domingo and Jose Cerreras.

Local artists whose works will be offered are Robyn Young, Craig Winkel and Mike Austin, among others.

Small is Chairwoman of Spay Today and the BAAC Community Development Board. She also is a co-founder of Spay Today and has been involved in advocacy for animals and animal rescue for years.

“I just have a great passion for animals,” Small said.

Small noted there are parts of the community where people don’t feel it is necessary to spay or neuter animals. But this leads to overpopulation and suffering as the animals lack adequate sources of food and water and fall prey to all sorts of diseases, she said.

When Shepherd University purchased the Tabler farm outside Shepherdstown, Small helped trap and found homes for about 80 cats.

Last year, the National Humane Education Society (NHES) provided $10,000 for spaying and neutering animals in Jefferson County. That’s money well-spent, according to Small, who points to the startling NHES statistic that one female cat and her offspring have the potential to produce 420,000 cats over seven years.

Through its 15 participating veterinarians, Spay Today spayed or neutered nearly 5,000 animals from July 1, 2008 through June 30, 2009, primarily from West Virginia’s Eastern Panhandle counties. But the center also serves Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia.

For the unfortunate animals who have been abandoned or need homes, the BAAC is equipped with a large cattery that can house about 100 cats. At the center off U.S. 340 near Charles Town some 120 volunteers take turns caring for all the dogs and cats.

“There have to be advocates,” Small said. “It’s a happy, healthy place.”

– Tickets for The Briggs Animal Adoption Center (BAAC) and Spay Today Whiskers and Wags Woof It Up! benefit are $40. For more information, tickets and/or donations, call (304) 724-6558 or e-mail development@nhes.org. Visit www.nhes.org and www.baacs.org