FORSYTH COUNTY — The Bark ‘n’ Boogie Ball was a wonderful night for guests and the animals they supported, said Lisa Leonard, president of the Forsyth County Humane Society.
A small army of volunteers was needed to host the gala, held this year at the Metropolitan Club in Alpharetta. Those efforts have shown approximately 75 percent of the funds raised last year, with more auction items still available at press time and the counting not yet completed.
“The Ball didn’t skip a beat in spite of a rocky economy,” Leonard said.
This year’s band, Haywire, was well received, she said. Costs were kept in line with last year despite an increase in basic expenses, because volunteers managed to find other cost savings.
While auction values and sales totals were comparable, bidders weren’t able to bid as high, Leonard said. That is a reflection of the stagnant U.S. economy, not the effort of volunteers or the generosity of attendees, she said.
“To pull off this kind of success when unemployment is higher than any since the Great Depression is inconceivable,” Leonard said.
The organization is still running a deficit, with funding running about 30 percent lower than in years past. This has forced the Humane Society to dip into rainy day assets.
If you missed the Bark ‘n’ Boogie Ball, Leonard said there are other ways to help out.
“Support our new Thrift Store,” she said. “Our grand opening is the second weekend in October.”
The Humane Society is relying on the store to even out their revenue flow and make the organization less dependent on the labor-intensive fundraisers. These large fundraisers cluster the Humane Society’s income into two annual peaks during the late spring and early fall.
Forsyth County residents can donate their gently-used treasures to the Thrift Store and shop for bargains.
The shop is a subsidiary non-profit, existing solely for the support of the Humane Society.
Leonard suggests following the Humane Society on Facebook, and regularly checking out www.forsythpets.org, where new opportunities to help, “wish lists” of needed shelter supplies and fun events are revealed throughout the year.