"Broadway Barks" Supports Pets for Adoption
Through Broadway Barks, the New York theater community shines the spotlight on rescued pets.
The Broadway neon lights were bright and hot in New York City's Times Square on Saturday afternoon, when the bustling scene got a new kind of tourist: dogs and cats, all looking for permanent homes.
Gathered in the historic Schubert Alley, nestled between prominent theaters, these pets stood a good shot of getting their wish. The annual adopt-a-thon, hosted by the nonprofit organization Broadway Barks, generally yields around 200 adoptions.
Actress Mary Tyler Moore and Broadway star Bernadette Peters founded Broadway Barks 12 years ago, as a means of providing more attention to “the plight of thousands of homeless dogs and cats in the Metropolitan Area.”
Linking Broadway with shelters and rescue groups proves to be an unstoppable match: dozens of small-time rescue organizations gain public exposure and donations. Both the ASPCA and Pedigree yesterday donated $50,000 each to Broadway Barks, which will distribute the money to all of its participating organizations.
A little bit of Broadway talent doesn't hurt when trying to effectively showcase these animals, either.
More than 30 Broadway and television actors starring in “West Side Story,” “Mamma Mia,” “Promises, Promises,” “Memphis,” “In the Heights” and the “The Addams Family” graced the performing stage with adoptable pets, and put their performance chops to tell the animals' compelling stories.
“See how many perfect pets there are available,” Peters, who recently returned to Broadway in the musical revival of “A Little Night Music,” told the audience of several thousand. “You want a Jack Russell? We got them. You want a Great Dane? We got them.”
Moore then chimed in: “You want a mutt whose father was a German Shepherd, Doxen-mix, whose mother was a Pit Bull and Labrador Retriever-mix? We got them.”
While some of the dogs onstage had been found on the side of a highway or wandering the city streets, others were surrendered after their families had to relocate because of financial reasons.
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