Go Wild in Palm Springs this Fall: Autumn Events for Animal Lovers!


14089162_1801970703420047_4591650787922395503_nMojave Animal Protection will host a Blessing Of The Animals event on Sunday, October 2, 2016 from 10:00am – 1:00pm at the Art Queen stage at 61855 Twentynine Palms Highway in Joshua Tree, California. Ordained Minister Charlie Ohnsted will perform blessings. The public is encouraged to bring their animals to be blessed. The day’s schedule will include specific “blessing times” for elderly, service, special needs and adoptable animals. The K9 unit from Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center in 29 Palms will be honored at 12 noon. Portions of the event will be broadcast live on their Facebook page.

Kelly Overton, Mojave Animal Protection’s Executive Director explains, “Our Blessing of the Animals is neither sacred nor secular—it is a celebration of all animals and the people and organizations that care for and protect them. This isn’t only for dogs and cats, we welcome people to bring their goats, horses and birds—all animals that can safely attend are welcome. We hope this will grow into an annual event for the area’s animal lovers. The day is about building community—people’s love for animals can break through political, cultural and economic barriers.”

Those attending are encouraged to bring blankets, towels and pet beds for distribution to local animal shelters. Tax deductible contributions to cover the cost of the event can be made at: https://www.gofundme.com/blessingofanimals



SpayGhetti_Postcard_2016_webJoin Loving All Animals for their 7th annual “Spay-Ghetti & No Balls” Pasta Dinner and Silent Auction, to be held on Thursday, October 13th from 4:00pm to 8:00pm at the BG Bird Gardens, 73179 Joshua Tree Street in Palm Desert. Their mission is to join with other local and national Animal Welfare Organizations to maximize programs intended to stop the killing of adoptable animals. Core services include: E-Adopt Network, Pet Adoption Fairs, Pets to People transportation via Mobile Mutts, Yappy Hours – Party with your Pets, Pet Participation at Community Events, Fundraising for local Animal Welfare Groups, Exotic Bird Sanctuary, and Foster Network Pet Therapy Visits.


Loving All Animals makes every effort to participate in the many other non-profit organizations operating in Greater Palm Springs. Often they bring adoptable animals to these events in hopes that the exposure will find them their new family.  It is not at all unusual to find a Pet Pal with adoptable dog in tow, walking the streets of El Paseo, Village Fest in Palm Springs or the Art Show in La Quinta.

When possible, Loving All Animals will embrace the opportunity to organize a community event for the benefit of animals, as was the case in the mass spay/neuter weekend at the Duroville Trailer Park.  With the assistance of seventy volunteers, the Humane Society of the United States, PetSmart Charities, Animal Samaritans, Save A Pet and several local veterinarians and their staff, over 200 dogs were altered at no cost to the owners.



YOTC_LaunchParty_EventThe Living Desert Zoo and Gardens is launching a year-long conservation effort focused on saving the cheetah from extinction. To kick off its “Year of the Cheetah” campaign, on Saturday, October 1, 2016, The Living Desert is hosting a daytime event from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and evening event, from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

The Year of the Cheetah launch party begins at 10 a.m. at the recently remodeled cheetah exhibit, new Cheetah Conservation Outpost and throughout the park. Guests can get up-close and personal with the cheetahs, and even snap a couple selfies with the fastest land animals on earth through the new observation window. The day’s events also include special cheetah zookeeper chats, behind-the-scenes tours (additional cost), a Cheetah Spot Challenge scavenger hunt, food trucks and beer garden, Cheetah Tales story times, animal encounters, face painting, and live entertainment by the festive Zulluu band. The Year of the Cheetah daytime event is free to members or with park paid admission.

When the sun goes down, the disco ball comes out and the Saturday Night Cheetah disco party begins. Kicking off with a cocktail reception at 6 p.m., guests will enjoy a photo booth, followed by a barbeque dinner and introduction to Year of the Cheetah. The evening continues with a disco dance party and dessert. And at 9 p.m. guests can gather to do the Hustle. Admission to Saturday Night Cheetah is $40 for members and $50 for non-members; tickets are available at livingdesert.org.

“The Living Desert has always been a conservation and preservation organization with a focus on saving endangered species,” said Allen Monroe, President/CEO of The Living Desert. “Year of the Cheetah is comprised of fun, yet educational festivities designed to help bring attention to the decreasing population of this amazing animal and to support programs that work tirelessly to protect them.”

The Living Desert is home to five cheetahs. Ntombi, aged 17, has lived at The Living Desert since 2010 and is the oldest female cheetah in the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ (AZA) population; Pula, aged 15, has lived at The Living Desert since 2011. And with much excitement, the zoo recently welcomed three 1-year-old sisters – Sudi, Kali, Bela. The sisters will celebrate their second birthday on October 1 during the Year of the Cheetah festivities.

the_living_desert_cheetah-1473970291-8391The Living Desert has selected three cheetah conservation projects to support during the year including the Sahara Conservation Fund’s Termit & Tin Toumma Project in Niger; Cheetah Conservation Fund’s Livestock Guarding Dog Program; and Action for Cheetahs in Kenya’s Ongoing Research Programs.

“Every time someone visits The Living Desert, they help save endangered species,” added Monroe. “We strive to encourage everyone to get involved, and efforts like Year of the Cheetah make it easy for people of all ages to make a big difference.”

Cheetahs are now extinct in more than 20 countries and are Africa’s most endangered cats. According to the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), in less than 20 years, the cheetah could be extinct, as there are less than 7,500 remaining in the wild.

Cheetahs can run at speeds up to 70 mph and reach that speed in just three seconds. Distinguishing the cheetah from other cats is its “tear marks” that run from the inside corners of their eyes down to the outside edges of their mouth. These marks help reflect the glare of the sun when they are hunting during the day.

Additional Year of the Cheetah events include an essay contest for students and a celebration on International Cheetah Day to be held December 4. For more information on Year of the Cheetah visit www.yearofthecheetah.org.

The Living Desert is open daily through September 30 from 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and October 1 to May 30 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information about upcoming events and activities, please call (760) 346-5694 or visit www.LivingDesert.org.

About David J Castello

David J Castello is the Editor-in-Chief and Chief Operating Officer for the Castello Cities Internet Network (PalmSprings.com, Nashville.com, WestPalmBeach.com, etc). His debut novel, The Diary of an Immortal (1945-1959) was published in 2016.

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