More than 400 animal lovers arrived July 13 at the Doral at Desert Princess Hotel to support Pegasus Therapeutic Riding and the Humane Society of the Desert, beneficiaries of the 16th annual Pets On Parade (POP) awards luncheon.
Host Dan McGrath welcomed guests and did a fine job as “live” auctioneer. Lori Carmen was persuasive in describing the work accomplished at both Pegasus Therapeutic Riding and the Humane Society.
Pegasus Therapeutic Riding brings exercise and therapy to riders of all ages with disabilities and gentle horses live out their final years helping the disabled. The Humane Society, a no kill shelter, provides loving homes for animals brought there.
The concept of Pets On Parade came from Lori Sarner, founder and president of Pegasus. It was her idea to partner with another animal-oriented organization to hold a fundraising luncheon in the middle of summer when there is little to do in an area known for its busy winter season.
The success of POP each year is due to the value of the two non-profit organizations that benefit from the event and planning by event chairs Malinda Bustos, president of the Humane Society, Pamela Moffitt Green and Robin Montgomery, Pegasus executive director. There is equal hard work put in by a committee that includes Albeth Paris Grass, Gloria Nelson, Rene Perle, Linda Norman Thomas, Kathy Hart, Steve Kotalik, Leana Bonamici, Larry and Mike Pedersen, and Jennifer Hamilton.
Palm Springs Life was presenting sponsor and Joan Page McKenna, senior editor, presented the publication’s “Cutest Pet Award” to Roxie Davenport and her human companion, Paul Jankowski. Roxie is featured on the August cover of Palm Springs Life under the title, “Portrait of a Lady.”
Julie Rosser sang Circle of Life with the California Ballet Opera Singers directed by Cliff Plummer, a sensational introduction to the Circle of Life Award presented by Riverside County Supervisor John Benoit’s wife, Sheryl, to Lindi Biggi, for her 33-year devotion to animals in the Coachella Valley and the organization she founded, Loving All Animals.