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The Daily Evergreen

The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

‘We can’t help animals without money,’ Whitman County Humane Society to host annual Fur Ball

A night of food and fun for animal lovers returns 6–9 p.m. Feb. 24 at SEL Event Center
Luna, a puppy that was under the Whitman County Humane Society’s care, in the hands of a WCHS worker.

Whitman County Humane Society’s largest annual fundraiser, the 16th annual Fur Ball, is returning from 6–9 p.m. Feb. 24 at the Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories Event Center. This year’s Fur Ball will feature a plated dinner, auction and other events.

Jeff DeBoer, WCHS President and board of directors member, said the money raised will go to shelter operations. Between inflation and changes to minimum wage, DeBoer said WCHS has been struggling the last couple of years, and they need all the donations they can get.

“We can’t help animals without money, unfortunately,” said Amy Pilloud, WCHS board member and volunteer.

Pilloud said a single ticket is $100 and includes a three-course dinner with drinks. A full-table ticket is $800 and is meant for attendees who wish to participate in Fur Ball with friends and secure guaranteed seats beside familiar people. A full table ticket secures a table for eight.

Tickets may be purchased on the WCHS website under the Fur Ball information section.

The order of events is as follows:

  • Yappy Hour at 5 p.m.: Happy Hour with a play on words
    • Check-in
    • Appetizers and drinks
  • Fur Ball at 6 p.m.
    • Opening statement
    • Presentation from shelter managers
    • Thank you to biggest sponsors
    • Introduction of celebrity servers
  • Plated dinner at 6:30 p.m.
    • Silent auction during dinner
  • Parade of Pets at 7 p.m.
    • Parade of Pets will transition into live auction

“As an animal lover myself, there are unfortunately so many animals that, for whatever reason, get abandoned or need a new home due to situations the owner didn’t foresee,” Pilloud said. “Without our help, a lot of these animals would not have homes and maybe would not have a happy, healthy life.”

During Yappy Hour, which begins an hour before the Fur Ball, attendees can chat and examine auction items while checking into the event, Pilloud said.

At the Fur Ball, DeBoer said he will deliver an opening statement before Glenn Johnson, former Pullman Mayor and event emcee, discusses his portion of the program.

Shelter managers will then inform attendees of recent shelter happenings and ways to support WCHS, Pilloud said.

Celebrity servers will deliver drinks and ensure everyone is enjoying the event, Pilloud said. This year’s celebrity servers are Whitman County Sheriff Brett Myers; Mike Heston, Pullman Fire Department Chief; Pullman City Councilmember Nathan Weller; and Greg Umbright, Pullman Police Department Sergeant.

After the silent auction and dinner is Parade of Pets, a slideshow featuring adoptable pets, recently adopted pets and their stories.

DeBoer said he and his wife adopted a dog at the 2018 Fur Ball because of that year’s Parade of Pets.

The live auction will occur after Parade of Pets, and the Fur Ball will close, Pilloud said.

Targeted fundraisers, such as Raise the Paddle, will occur alongside the main Fur Ball events, DeBoer said. Currently, WCHS only has the capacity for eight dogs; Raise the Paddle will be dedicated to improving the WCHS dog building.

“The goal of the Humane Society is to make sure every pet finds that home that they can live a life and be happy and healthy,” Pilloud said.

The Fur Ball’s goal is to raise at least 25% of the yearly WCHS budget, Pilloud said.

The attendance goal is 300 people and the expected attendance is at least 250 people, she said. If you are unable to attend but would like to donate, you may do so on the WCHS website at the bottom of the Fur Ball information section.

DeBoer said volunteer capacity for Fur Ball is full, but volunteers are always needed and appreciated for future events. If you would like to volunteer for future events, visit the volunteering section on the WCHS website. Suggestions for future events can be emailed to [email protected].

“It’s a fun night to get out, dress up a little bit and have fun with friends, meet new people,” Pilloud said.

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About the Contributor
JULIA MESSEGEE, Evergreen reporter
Julia, who goes by Jules, is a sophomore from the Seattle area pursuing a degree in computer science at WSU Pullman. She started working at the Daily Evergreen in fall 2022. She enjoys writing about various topics and her hobbies, programming and journalism, are what led her to work in journalism while majoring in a STEM field.