Talking Pets: Mark your calendars for these upcoming events

February 1, 2013 

Now that the holidays are over, it's time to mark your calendars for upcoming animal-related fundraisers.

First up is the Mardi Gras Craft Beer Festival set for 4-9 p.m. Saturday on Old Main Street in downtown Bradenton.

There will be craft beers and Cajun food to sample, with entertainment will be provided by the Gumbo Boogie and Mumbo Gumbo Bands.

Dogs are welcome at this event, but they must be wearing their current county rabies tag and be leashed (8 feet maximum).

Proceeds will benefit the No Kill Manatee fund.

For more information, go to www.CraftBeerExpo.org.

The following weekend, Cat Depot in Sarasota will celebrate its 10th anniversary with the Forget Me Not Gala 6:30-10:30 p.m. Feb. 9 at Laurel Oak Country Club, 2700 Gary Player Blvd., Sarasota.

Guests will dine at a buffet with an open bar and be entertained by gala emcee and auctioneer Tim Wilkins, a veteran stand-up comedian, TV and radio personality, speaker and writer.

Music will be provided by Full Swing Productions with DJ Tom DiSarro, who has donated his services for several Cat Depot events.

Highlight of the evening will be the live and silent auctions, with more than $30,000 in items and prizes donated for the event. Silent auction items include a CD autographed by Justin Bieber, tickets to "Les Miserables," hotel packages, and certificates to area day spas, theaters and restaurants.

Reservations are $150, with proceeds going to help homeless cats and kittens with food and medical care.

Information and reservations can be obtained by calling 941-366-2404 or visiting www.CatDepot.org.

Cat Depot will also host Dr. Sherry Zenor, who will talk about "Cats in the Dog House" 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Feb. 23 at the Cat Depot Education Center, 2542 17th St., Sarasota.

Dr. Zenor, a feline-exclusive veterinarian in Sarasota, will offer advice about what to do when "good cats go bad."

Registration fee is $10; call Corey at 941-366-2404 to reserve a spot.

The seventh annual Paws in Motion Walk-A-Thon to benefit the Humane Society of Manatee County will begin at 9 a.m. March 9 at Riverwalk in Bradenton.

Registration begins at 8 a.m.; the walk starts at 9 a.m. Minimum donation: $25 per walker, maximum of two dogs per walker, but if you don't have a dog, that's OK, too.

The first 500 walkers will receive a "goody wag bag" and a pass to the Doggie Fun Zone, sponsored by Pet's Life Naturally, with a challenging obstacle course. Lots of vendors will be on hand with pet-friendly items, and there will be entertainment and prizes.

Here's some more incentive to participate: The person who raises the most money for this year's walk-a-thon will be offered the opportunity for their pet to be the "spokespet" for the 2014 event.

For more information, call 941-747-8808, ext. 310, or visit www.humanemanatee.org. You can also register online at www.firstgiving.com/humanesocietymanatee.

If your organization is planning an event, be sure to email it to us so we can get the word out to the community. Manatee County loves its animals!

M.K. Means, Herald copy editor, can be reached at 941-745-7054. Follow her on Twitter @BradentonPets.

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