Marin Humane Brings Together Animal Aficionados to Raise Funds to Support our Furry Friends at Annual Gala

Animal aficionados and their furry friends traveled from across the Bay Area to Novato on September 25 to partake in Marin Humane’s 2021 Gala, “Together at Last.” 

Held on the expansive lawn at Marin Humane’s campus, the sold-out affair drew more than 350 guests all sharing a love of animals. Several brought their well-behaved canine companions with them; others visited the event’s star attraction — a “pawparazzi” photo booth in which guests could snuggle and take photos with adorable, adoptable kittens and puppies.

Marin Humane Veterinarian Dr. Monica Ortiz
Veterinarian Dr. Monica Ortiz

The evening kicked off with a cocktail hour and silent auction, with guests sipping specialty cocktails like the “Moscow Mutt” and the “Cat Scratch Spritzer” made with vodka donated by Tito’s Vodka and noshing on delicious vegetarian appetizers, including vegan cheese donated by Miyoko’s Creamery.

Guests also enjoyed a plant-based dinner by Marin-based Sage Catering, while they learned more about the work Marin Humane does every day on behalf of animals and the people who love them. A live auction following dinner offered a number of packages from which to choose, but one item stood out in particular —cases of red wine personalized with the purchaser’s own pet photo on the label.

Paul Shapiro, Toni Okamoto Shapiro and Eddie
Paul Shapiro, Toni Okamoto Shapiro and Eddie

The event raised $575,000, which will enable the non-profit to strengthen its community engagement efforts as well as provide additional funding for a program designed to help lower income families offset animal expenses. “We’re immensely grateful to our generous donors, who are helping improve the lives of animals — and people — throughout Marin,” said Nancy McKenney, CEO of Marin Humane.

Event guests included  Miyoko Schinner of Miyoko’s Creamery, Cheryl Popp of  Sausalito Books by the Bay, Michael Lappert of Lappert’s Ice Cream, Paul Shapiro of The Better Meat Co, Marin County District Attorney Lori Frugoli and Marin County Supervisor Damon Connelly.

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A freelance writer in Marin who writes about family, kids and parenting, Glass is the mother to one son, one dog and a hamster named Miss Geri. When she’s not writing, trekking up steep hills in Marin or driving her kid to sports practice, she and her family spend time in their tiny cabin in Lake Tahoe. She avidly supports the California Academy of Sciences, a world class science museum and research institution, and the Institute on Aging which provides much needed services to Bay Area seniors and disabled adults. Glass is obsessed with baking the perfect loaf of banana bread, something she makes so often she no longer needs to look at a recipe card.

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