Midwest FurFest Raises $92,000 for SitStayRead!

 Certified Reading Assistance Dog, Trogdor, loving all the attention at Midwest FurFest.

Certified Reading Assistance Dog, Trogdor, loving all the attention at Midwest FurFest.

$92,000 raised for SitStayRead at the 2018 Midwest FurFest.

 Executive Director Mara O’Brien accepts a check for $50,000 from the Midwest FurFest.

Executive Director Mara O’Brien accepts a check for $50,000 from the Midwest FurFest.

CHICAGO - This past weekend, the 19th annual Midwest FurFest, a convention for the furry fandom, was held at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare Convention Center in Rosemont, IL. At the three-day convention, attendees celebrated their community by gathering for an array of panels, dances, concerts, meet-ups, auctions, artists’ showcases, including opportunities to merchandise from fandom artists, and so much more!

Every year, the FurFest picks an animal-centric charity to benefit, and this year they chose SitStayRead! With a long history of philanthropy, the FurFest community has given over $449,000 to charities since 2000.

This year’s convention was their largest yet, drawing over 10,700 attendees from 30 countries and giving their largest gift amount to any charity in their history! From donations, charity auction sales, charity events, and the FurFest itself, SitStayRead received over $92,000 in donations.

I don’t know if I will ever have words to describe SitStayRead’s experience this weekend at Midwest Fur Fest. The community at the Midwest Fur Fest were truly some of the kindest, most generous, giving and inclusive people I have met in my life. I feel so blessed to have had the opportunity - both for SitStayRead and personally - to be part of the Midwest Fur Fest! The donations will touch SO many lives (both Human and Canine) - and will make a difference in the lives of those we serve!
— Mara O’Brien, Executive Director of SitStayRead

SitStayRead would like to thank the entire FurFest community for all that they have done for the organization and for the students we serve. The money raised this weekend will go so far in helping to reach more students in more schools with more dogs. We are so grateful for the compassion and kindness experienced this weekend. Thank you to the entire FurFest community for letting SitStayRead into your home and accepting us - and our dogs! - with open arms. We’ll always remember this magical weekend!