Generally speaking, when you tell someone that you’re throwing a birthday party for a dog, people do a double take. But that hasn’t deterred the fine folks at Rich’s Auto Center (2135 Sandpoint Rd) from holding a public party in honor of their shop dog, “Charlie” for the past 2 years. Of course, all the usual decorations from a real birthday party are there, but as soon as you walk in you can tell that this is a very special and different type of event designed to unite the community around helping families and pets in the area.
On Saturday, October 23 from 1-4pm, Charlie cordially invites anyone (including friendly leashed dogs) who would like to come to Rich’s Auto Center and celebrate his 10th birthday with him. There will be light refreshments for human guests, a play area for dogs, Meet & Greet with adoptable foster dogs from the Fort Wayne Pitbull Coalition, and vendors with educational information about dog training, microchipping and more.
But, Charlie isn’t hoping for gifts for him, he’s asking for pet food donations (right now Pet Food Pantry is in dire need of kitty food!!!) and financial contributions to the Fort Wayne Pet Food Pantry who serve his pet friends throughout the community. Each donation at the event enters guests to win $250 worth of service at Rich’s Auto Center. Pet food or financial donations can also be dropped off previous to the event, during regular business hours. If you’d like to donate the day of, but can’t stay, there will be volunteers who will be accepting drive-through donations.
According to Charlie’s owner, Cindy Elzey, “Charlie loves to be around furry friends and cares that their basic needs are met, like food, safety, shelter and most of all love! The past two years were so successful, Charlie is excited for this year’s party and hopes that you will consider helping those pets in dire need this year too!”
As you might imagine, over the past year and a half of the pandemic, volunteers at Fort Wayne Pet Food Pantry have been incredibly busy helping families (including pets) stay together by removing one of the biggest burdens, the cost of pet food.
“Deciding whether to surrender a pet member of the family to a shelter is one of the hardest decisions a family has to make.” Rochele Watson, Executive Director of The Fort Wayne Pet Food Pantry continues, “The Pantry is here to help keep families together and pets in their loving homes simply by reducing one of the largest costs and determining factors for those struggling financially, pet food.”
The Fort Wayne Pet Food Pantry is a 501(c)(3) organization which provides pet food at no cost for pet owners in Northern Indiana who cannot afford to care for their pets. In 2020, Fort Wayne Pet Food Pantry distributed 76,517 pounds of pet food for all types of animals. Since its founding 10 years ago, the pantry has helped dramatically reduce the number of animals surrendered to local shelters. You can learn more about Fort Wayne Pet Food Pantry’s Community Distributions at fwpetfoodpantry.com
No RSVP is necessary to come to the party, so, come out and enjoy a visit with Charlie at Rich’s Auto Center where there is a history of servicing our community through our business and hands on commitment to local non-profit organizations. For information about the event, please call Rich’s Auto Center at (260) 747-8145 or follow the event on Facebook by searching Charlie’s Birthday Bash or www.facebook.com/events/3099787346762575/