Party for the Pets, a first time event held at the Elks Lodge in Perry, raised over $800 dollars in cash donations for two animal shelters, P.E.T.S. in Panora and the Humane Society of Perry. Funds gathered from the event were later split equally and donated to both shelters.


“It definitely exceeded our expectations,” Amber Green, Elks Lodge Officer and animal volunteer said. “I was hopeful for at least 25 people, and one of the helpers mentioned that there were about 65 to 70 people.”


The event was planned as a way to give back to two shelters both Elks Lodge members, Amber Green and Shawna Trogdon have helped with in the past.


Their relationship with the shelters began a few years back.


“Shawna adopted a kitty from us and Amber then adopted from us, so I would say two to three years [the shelter has worked with them],” Cindy Waters, Panora P.E.T.S volunteer said. “We needed some help with litter; we use a lot of litter and we asked if there was anybody who could help.”


Green and her boyfriend, Eric Derry, along with Shawna and her boyfriend, Mike Jung, began to make regular weekend trips hauling litter.


After realizing how many items could be donated to the shelter, details for the event started to fall into place.


Party for the Pets attendees were asked to either bring in a $5.00 cash entry fee, which later provided them with a plate to enjoy grilled goods as well as baked treats.


“Just strictly based on cash, Panora got over $500 and Perry got over $325,” Green said. “It was over $800 dollars total with cash donation.”


A donation table was also set up at the Elks Lodge, holding items such as cat treats, cat litter, and cat food.


“There was two carloads of tangible donations,” Green said. “We loaded up to my car on Sunday; there was a lot of treats and a lot of cat food.”


Volunteers were appreciative of the efforts as all of the funds go directly towards animals in need.


“We’re a pretty small group,” Waters said. “It was just so heart touching; the effort that they put into it, the financial and everything they did - they planned it, it was really touching.”


For those who missed the Elks Lodge event and have a desire to give back, Waters outlines items the Panora P.E.T.S. shelter is in need of, items that can also be donated to the Humane Society of Perry.


“Cleaning supplies, paper towels, toilet paper, and laundry detergent,” Waters said.


Shelters are also benefiting from social media.


“One of the other things we’re finding is that social media is huge,” Waters said. “If they like the page and then share a post, we’ve gotten so many adoptions that way.”


Green believes the event was a success.


“We’re just extremely thankful,” Green said.