What a great celebration of people’s love for animals we had on Saturday evening at the Jefferson for our fifteenth annual Fur Ball! It was truly the biggest and the best one ever. Because number fifteen deserved to be an even more special occasion than our Fur Balls usually are, we did some new fun things and had some special surprises in store for the guests. The evening’s Cinderella theme was apropos of the magical nature of the evening. Of course, the Fur Ball is our sole source of funding for the Cinderella Fund which is what we tap to pay for veterinary care and rehabilitation for the thousands of sick and injured homeless animals who come in to our loving care each year. Without the Fur Ball, we would never be able to save their lives. So, the fun has a very serious purpose. And, I am so deeply grateful to the title sponsor BB&T who made this lifesaving event possible for us.
After we moved up to the ballroom, it was my great pleasure to present the Ellen Glasgow Award to MARTIN's Food Markets which is one of our most devoted and generous corporate donors, giving us all of the food, litter and treats the animals in our care need. The award was accepted by Jim Scanlon, the Regional Vice President of Martin’s and a dedicated member of our Board. He spoke inspiringly of Martin’s belief in the Richmond SPCA and our mission and even took the occasion to announce an additional gift of support that they will make to our fund to buy a much needed new van. A delicious dinner followed, and the remarkable piece de resistance of the meal was a dessert that looked like a beautiful Cinderella slipper made of white chocolate filled with delicious chocolate truffles. It was a true work of art by Jefferson pastry chef Sara Ayyash and I ate every single delectable bite of mine.
After dessert, we showed a video that reflected the remarkable film making talents of our staff member Louis Handler. It was a Richmond SPCA Cinderella Story. It told the story of a little homeless dog (portrayed by our own alumnus Hoover) who received the veterinary care she needed thanks to the Cinderella Fund and then went to an adoption event where she attended a fantasy ball and met her perfect adopter there. They went off together in a gorgeous carriage and then arrived at the Fur Ball. It was absolutely adorable and made everyone in the audience laugh. You should take a look at it on YouTube. After the video ended, Emerson and Bekkah Hughes sang the gorgeous Rogers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella song “Ten Minutes Ago” to the piano accompaniment of Kathy Hughes. Their voices were stunningly beautiful. The Fur Ball guests were thrilled and delighted by the video and the singing and even more so when we presented Hoover live and in person. Everyone laughed when I confessed to them that Hoover, who is now much loved in his forever home with one of our volunteers, is actually a "Cinderfella." Hoover was the perfect choice for the role, despite the differing gender, because he really did come to us very sick and in need of Cinderella Fund care and now is healthy and very happy.
The fifteenth annual Fur Ball was a huge success for us. While we are still counting, it is clear that the event significantly exceeded our monetary goal for the evening. It also gave our very best friends and supporters a magical evening that they will long remember with their beloved pets. There is nothing more rewarding for us than to know that we will have the resources for the coming year to provide the veterinary care and rehabilitation that thousands of wonderful homeless animals will need. I am so very grateful to the Fur Ball guests whose generosity will make that possible and to our wonderful Fur Ball Chair Pat Manning without whom none of this would have happened.
Robin Robertson Starr is the chief executive officer of the Richmond SPCA. To read her biography or that of our other bloggers, please click here. Before posting a comment, please review our comment guidelines. Please note that our comment policy requires both your first and last name to be used as your screen name.