As I reflect back on Paws Crossed’s first year, I am excited and, quite honestly humbled, by the generosity of our community and I am grateful to so many that have walked side-by side with us. Almost exactly one year after the doors were shut on rescue in Elmsford, we will be reopening these doors as a new organization and celebrating with our community at our Grand Opening on September 17th!
The blindsiding closing announcement from the former animal rescue in July 2015, shocked our community. But out of this devastating announcement, Paws Crossed was born!!! We were quickly incorporated by August 4th 2015, (one year ago today!) and we began motions to fight for the property that had been a safe haven for countless pets for over eighty years. For many of our Legacy Dogs, (dogs that had lived at the rescue dating back to the Elmsford Animal Shelter) this property was the only home they had ever known. When the former animal rescue closed its doors on September 15th 2015, and all remaining pets were transferred to a rescue upstate, a tremendous void was immediately felt throughout Westchester County and beyond. We knew we had to step up to the plate so that this wonderful property could once again be used as a resource for our community and more importantly, for the pets that were so desperately counting on us. Together, with a passionate and dedicated team, and overwhelming community support, we decided to never give up...no matter what.
The past year has been a roller coaster of emotions with many celebrations along the way. The moments we all celebrated gave us the strength and motivation to push forward with never waning determination and incredible passion. In the past, I had lived by the saying “When you feel like quitting, remember why you started”… and I needed to be reminded of this every day. After the start of Paws Crossed, I didn’t need that reminder anymore… I never felt like quitting…and I never lost hope that we would accomplish our goals. This is all because of our incredibly loyal and caring staff members, hard-working board members, devoted volunteers and dedicated supporters. I know that our team at Paws Crossed has one goal in mind, and that is to “Rescue One By One Until There Are None.” This goal and mission is the driving force behind all that we do each and every day.
Paws Crossed signed for the property on June 2nd 2016, after a persistent 10-month pursuit. The feeling as we walked onto the property that day can only be described as pure joy and overwhelming emotion. Even though the property was overgrown and neglected, we could finally say that all of our dreams for Paws Crossed were no longer just dreams, but instead, now plans and goals! Growing up, my parents always told me that I could do anything if I put my mind to it and to never give up on anything that was important to me. I know that we have come as far as we have in such a short time because we, as an organization and community, refused to give up. Despite delays and set backs, we persevered, never losing sight of the end game...reestablishing a true no kill rescue in Westchester.
Recently our first residents arrived at Paws Crossed! Hearing dogs barking and seeing our kennels once again providing sanctuary to pets awaiting their forever homes brought tears of joy! Those happy faces and wagging tails have only driven home to us that this emotional and challenging journey to get here was worth every minute!
In just two quick months after signing, our rescue is already showing positive signs of life and rapidly transforming as contractors, painters, electricians, plumbers, and landscapers work their magic! Chapter One of our Capital Campaign: “Making a Home for the Animals”, is coming to a close and we can’t wait to write the rest of our story!
We invite you to join us for an emotional, exciting and fun filled day at our Grand Opening on September 17th from 12-3pm. We want to thank the community in person for all of their support and encouragement – and for keeping this story in the public’s hearts and minds. There will be a ribbon cutting ceremony, pet vendors, a pet fashion show, food and drink vendors, children’s activities, pet portraits, and much more! We welcome you to bring your whole family, including your well-behaved dogs!
We also want to invite you to our first annual “Autumn Tails” gala event hosted at the Renaissance in White Plains on October 21st from 7-11pm; tickets will go on sale soon!
Other upcoming events:
Russ Harper Benefit Concert at Canine Kindergarten in Verplank: Friday August 5th from 6:30-8:00pm. Bring your blankets, pets and wine for a great evening with great music!
Yappy Hour at Captain Lawrence Brewing Company: Unlimited beer, wine and soda from 6-9pm on September 8th, 9th and 10th.
2nd Annual Cocktails for a Cause at Ron Blacks in White Plains on September 21st from 6-9pm: Discounted drink specials, appetizer specials, and great raffle prizes!
A huge and heartfelt THANK YOU to everyone who has supported us through this journey and made our first year a success! We could never have made it this far without you. We invite you to continue on this journey with us and we welcome everyone to become part of our story.