If you’re on HSBC’s email list, you probably got an invitation to The Humane Society Phoenixville’s First Friday art show this Friday. It will be a blast and we hope you make it. The art by Matthew Mazurkiewicz is really good. Some of you might also have wondered, like the one email I received from a supporter did, what happened to Furry Fridays in Reading and why are they in Phoenixville?
We had hoped it would be self-evident by now why we weren’t having any in Reading at the Scholar Center because we had expected to have half our building demolished as we started construction on our new animal housing and nationally accredited community animal hospital. Unfortunately, our planned start last Spring became a planned start of last Fall as we waited for construction approvals from the City of Reading. As is always the case with best laid plans, things were delayed and we decided it would be smarter and safer to wait until this Spring to break ground.
Since shows have to be booked well in advance, it meant we had to decide not to host any shows in Reading while we wait. But when one door shuts, another opens, and the door that opened was in Phoenixville. Specifically, the door to our new cat adoption center and dedicated gallery space at The Humane Society Phoenixville & Art Deska Gallery. The artists who had been so generous to offer their support through art shows were able to bring their work in support of newest effort to help animals, and in a setting which is made for art. In fact, from April through October, the entire town shuts down on First Friday evenings just so we can have a showing. OK, not just for us, but it’s a huge party and makes for a great and busy opening.
As always, the reason we have these shows at all is to introduce people to our mission, get folks in to see animals for adoption, remind people that our adoption centers are happy and inviting places, and to show our appreciation for the artists in the region who have done so much through the years to raise funds and awareness for our mission by making some of our animal welfare supporters aware of their fantastic art. Since The Humane Society Phoenixville is new, it needs the attention.
By the way, what’s the deal with The Humane Society Phoenixville, anyway? Glad you asked! Well, HSBC has always known that the needs of animals don’t stop at some line on a map, that people will or can only go so far for adoptions and other services we provide, and that some of our locations can only provide so much. That’s why we opened the County’s first free public dog park in Exeter, our first cat and small animal adoption satellite in Douglassville, put our mobile adoption and VetMobile on the road, and recently opened The Humane Society Phoenixville.
It has been a great way to get more cats adopted- our toughest challenge to adopt because of the sheer numbers flooding shelters- and to bring much needed program and veterinary support to the pets of underserved and at risk populations in the immediate Phoenixville area. Funds raised at that location are dedicated to helping animals in that community, hence, its own unique name. Of course, it is run with the same drive to help animals and focus on high quality and effective services. It had the added benefit of being in a former art gallery so, duh, we had to have our artist friends involved. More on The Humane Society Phoenixville soon, keep checking back.
So, to review: Thought we were building in Reading so we didn’t schedule shows but we got delayed; were lucky enough to have a new spot where we could have the art shows while we wait; we expect that we will finally break ground in Spring on our Scholar Center reservations- more on that soon, too; we love all the artists who have helped us be not only a great animal organization but a great arts organization, and we hope everyone takes a drive to Phoenixville to check out Friday’s showing. Anything else? Oh, right! That merger thing we mentioned a while back is finally about to be final, allowing our new bigger organization to help animals in need right here at home and across SE Pennsylvania. You can bet there will be much more on that later. Whew.
Wow, we’ve been busy.