PICKENS COUNTY — Leadership Pickens County Class of 2018 is excited about this year’s non-profit community project at the Pickens County Animal Shelter (formerly named Upstate SPCA): The creation of “Leadership Legacy Park.”
“Leadership Legacy Park at the Pickens County Animal Shelter will be a great addition to the animal shelter,” said Sharon Johnson, information specialist for the County. “This outdoor park area gives people and pets a place to connect with the goal of increasing adoptions and decreasing the number of pets that linger in shelters. Or worse — are euthanized.”
The county animal shelter is the only animal shelter in Pickens County providing refuge for all stray or abandoned animals. Other shelters can deny animals for any reason, she said.
Students from the School District of Pickens County are also involved in the project and will join the class in painting “an inviting space that encourages animal adoptions” adjacent to the shelter on Prison Camp Road.
“In this space, we’re creating an exterior wall art mural with painted animal paw prints with donor names on the paws as well as painted fire hydrants throughout the park, also with donor names or logos,” Johnson said. “This is an excellent opportunity for the entire community to come out, donate and even adopt a pet.”
The idea, Johnson said, was to have a place where potential adopters can spend some time with a dog or puppy outside the shelter itself.
Drew Sisco, director of operations for the shelter, stated it was not uncommon to see animals take on a drastically different personality once they were outside the facility’s walls.
“You see it all the time. Inside, they’re frightened, it’s noisy, it’s stressful,” he said. “You get these same animals out on a walk — and they turn into a whole new dog. Happy. Relaxed.”
In total, Leadership Pickens County is hoping to raise $10,000 to create the dog park, and are welcoming any and all community participation.
The campaign is already underway but an upcoming fundraiser at the Appalachian Ale House in downtown Pickens is hoped to help bring some needed financing — as well as find forever homes for a few pups and kitties.
On Feb. 27 — also known as “World Spay Day” — the shelter’s recently unveiled mobile adoption unit will be parked outside the Ale House at 205 E. Main Street for “Barks and Brews” starting at 5:30 p.m.
In addition to having pets available for adoption on site (and, you know, beer…) there will also be a silent auction with proceeds going to help the shelter and the envisioned baLeadership Legacy Park.
Donations can also be made through www.gofundme.com/leadershiplegacypark.