‘Toast’ is on hold
Right about now all the Central Aroostook Humane Society board members would be soliciting sponsors, auction items, gathering merchandise, making calls, sending letters and preparing for our biggest fundraiser of the year: the Toast to the Animals. After COVID hit last year, all of our fundraising stopped. Many of us and our supporters were disappointed to cancel all our events.
Our hope this year was that all the craziness would have settled down and we could once again celebrate the animals at our Toast. Several concerns have made us put this popular event on hold. First and foremost, the reported cases here in Aroostook County have started to increase at an alarming rate. Our event draws several hundred supporters and the thought that we could be putting people at risk is frightening.
Our second concern is that we rely on many businesses and individuals to become sponsors, which basically enables us to hold this event. We also reach out to many businesses and people to donate to our silent auction, which brings in the bulk of our money raised. It’s been a tough 18 months for many, with businesses having to shut their doors or find alternative ways to keep some of their customers. Additionally, many folks were laid off or had hours cut. It’s been a struggle for everyone living through this pandemic.
The board felt that after such a difficult year, we couldn’t in good conscience go out soliciting and asking for donations. It just didn’t feel right. Our “Toast” is truly a special event and we will be 100 percent back next year, hopefully bigger and better.
We are so very thankful for our supporters. Even during this pandemic, so many have continued to give special donations, memorials of loved ones who have passed, kids foregoing birthday gifts to be able to fill our lobby with pet donations, and the continued support and followers on our shelter Facebook page. We are so fortunate to be a part of this amazing community called Aroostook County.
Stay safe — and remember to be responsible pet owners by spaying and neutering your pets.
Gloria J. Towle is the secretary and a member of the board of the Central Aroostook Humane Society.