PAWS for a cause

Around 200 people turned out Saturday night at Rum Point for some barefoot fun to support PAWS, a nonprofit group that assists animals in the eastern districts.

The fundraiser drew its largest crowd since it was launched in 2012.

“It was a fantastic evening,” said Giuseppe Gatta, president of PAWS – Protection of Animal Welfare Society. “The turnout was overwhelming.” Some guests arrived by car, others by boat with a sunset sail arranged by Red Sail Sports. But everyone opened up their pocketbooks to assist the animals.

Guests gathered on the beach for a buffet dinner, silent and live auctions and some lighthearted entertainment highlighted by a Broadway revue featuring “showgirls” cavorting to Abba tunes. A performance by “Queen” Angela Adams was also a crowd-pleaser. The New York singer and off-Broadway performer organizes and choreographs the charity’s show each year.

The lively crowd took the bidding to great heights on a variety of silent auction items, including a selection of wine, restaurant gift certificates, ceramics imported from Mexico, weekend stays at local hotels and condos, jewelry and artwork.

After dinner, it was on to the live auction with Andrew Bacon serving as auctioneer. A highlight of the live auction was a long weekend stay in a private villa in Jamaica, donated by Brian Uzzell.

The money raised will assist with the group’s spay and neuter program, financial assistance for vet treatments and pet food for people who cannot afford it, and materials to build pet shelters made by inmates at Northward Prison.

PAWS also houses animals at Pet Paradise until homes can be found for them. To raise money, it operates a thrift store in Bodden Town. Giuseppe and Susanna Gatta of the Lighthouse Restaurant in Breakers, along with Alex Stewart and Marleine Gagnon, founded PAWS in 2010.

If interested in adopting a PAWS dog or cat, call 916-1731 or 916-3957.

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PAWS founder Giuseppe Gatta plays it up to the tune of Abba’s ‘Take a Chance on Me.’ Photos of dogs and cats available for adoption were paraded on stage. – PHOTOS: JENNY GABRUCH

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Dr. Sook Yin, Susanna Gatta and Diane Brazelton.

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Lorene Stewart, Susan Gabruch and Fraser Allen.

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A performance by Broadway ‘showgirls’ was a big hit with the crowd. From left, Jerome Ameline, Vico Testori, Giuseppe Gatta, MC Andrew Bacon, Keith Griffin and Radames Tognazzo. – PHOTOS: MICHELLE HAYES
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