Friday, March 17, 2017

Cat Camp NYC - A Cat Lover's Delight

Living in New York City definitely has its perks. Admittedly, at times I am a “jaded New Yorker”, not being able to see past the traffic that takes me an hour to navigate the 10 miles to my office, or the train delays that turn a 50-minute commute into 90 minutes. But when Cat Camp NYC was announced, right here in my backyard, I was happier than ever to live here. 


New York City’s first feline-focused symposium.



cat camp nyc|meow parlour


Christina Ha is not only the founder of New York City’s first cat café (Meow Parlour), she is the founder of the first feline-focused symposium in New York City. Cat Camp NYC was a two-day convention celebrating cats and the people who love them. With over 2,500 attendees, I would say the event was a success! (I'm going to apologize for the quality of some of the photos; my camera decided to go on the fritz right in the middle of everything!) 

I enjoyed seeing familiar faces from the blogging world, and I had a great time spending the weekend with Deb Barnes of Zee and Zoey and Laura Zaccardi of Squeedunk Cats


cat camp nyc|meow parlour


I ran into the mom of one of Lola and Lexy’s Instagram friends, @mrpawesome. (We posted his rescue story and you can read it here.) 


cat camp nyc|meow parlour

And look at this cutie, Mac, of @Littleman_Mika


cat camp nyc|meow parlour


Let’s Make Cats Lives Better


The theme that infused the event was enhancing cats’ lives. The Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals, New York City Feral Cat Initiative, and the Paw Project were just a few of the organizations represented there. The Cat Rescuers and Catnip Nation are two documentary films that tell the stories of volunteers who rescue and care for feral cats on the streets. The Cat Rescuers was filmed in Brooklyn, in many areas that I work in. I was able to speak to one of the filmmakers about the huge problem in Canarsie, one of the areas it was filmed in. Catnip Nation was partially filmed in Rockland County, my (and Lexy’s) hometown. I am looking forward to blogging about both films in the future to bring attention to this important matter. 


cat camp nyc|meow parlour

One organization that really impacted me was the Urban Resource Institute of NYC. This agency that works with victims of domestic violence runs a program called URIPALS: People and Animals Living Safely. This innovative program is the only one of its kind in New York City, assisting pet owners facing domestic violence by allowing their pets into the shelter. It almost brought tears to my eyes discussing it with the representative. This is also a subject you will hear more about on the blog in the near future. 


Artwork, t-shirts, and cat toys – oh my!


There were 49 vendors at Cat Camp, all selling cat-themed clothing, wares and of course toys, treats, beds, hats and much more for kitties. 


cat camp nyc|meow parlour


cat camp nyc|meow parlour


Jamie Shelman of The Dancing Cat, whose artwork I love, was one of the vendors. The first thing I said to her was “You painted a picture of my friend’s cat!” She had a copy of the print of Pickles (CEO of Sweet Pickles Designs) and I couldn’t resist buying it. 


cat camp nyc|meow parlour

I was delighted to meet Terri, the owner of Honeycat Cosmetics. Her products are not only high quality, but they are cruelty-free! Music to my ears! Some of them are vegan as well. You’ll be hearing more about Honey Cat in the future on our blog. 


cat camp nyc|meow parlour

I really need to get this cat tree from Pet Tree Houses for my girls. The company will custom make one depending on the size you need, and will not charge a large fee for doing so. 


cat camp nyc|meow parlour


Adopt, Don’t Shop! 

It’s no surprise that my favorite part was the adoption area. Rescues/shelters that were there included Kitty Kind, Patricia H. Ladew Foundation, Best Friends Society, Bronx Tails Cat Rescue, and Frankie’s Fund among others. The adoption area was jam packed with people and I heard many asking about certain cats. This beauty had a pending adoption! 


cat camp nyc|meow parlour

Speakers and Presentations

I was able to make a few of the presentations. Dr. Jennifer Conrad presented on the horrific effects of declawing. Assembly Woman Linda Rosenthal joined her on stage to talk about the legislation she is trying to push through in Albany to ban declawing in New York State. Hannah Shaw taught the audience how to take care of kittens. I learned a lot from both presentations. 


cat camp nyc|meow parlour
L to R: Dr. Jennifer Conrad, Assembly woman Linda Rosenthal, Hannah Shaw
Photo credit: Andrew Marttila. Used with permission.  

I thoroughly enjoyed Lil Bub and Mike Bridavsky. Bub is probably one of the cutest cats I’ve ever seen. (Please don't tell Lola I said that!)



cat camp nyc|meow parlour|Lil Bub

It was so obvious and endearing to see how much Mike loves and adores her. It’s evident in the way he dotes on her, and in the look on his face when he’s watching videos of her or showing photos like the one on the far right to the audience. 


cat camp nyc|meow parlour|Lil Bub


I’m disappointed that I didn’t get to meet her. Her Meet n’ Greet raised approximately $16,000, which will go to the ASPCA, Meow Parlour, and KittyKind. Good job, Bub! 

Kate Benjamin of Hauspanther spoke about feline design and gave many ideas on how to share your living space with a cat while keeping asthetics in mind. I loved so many of the products she showed, and I wish I could make a super highway in my apartment. 

The highlight of the weekend was a Meet n’ Greet with Jackson Galaxy. I had my photo taken with him


cat camp nyc|meow parlour|Jackson Galaxy

and got my book autographed. He is such a nice guy! I mean really nice. His keynote was delivered to a packed room. Jackson is an energetic speaker and very entertaining. He spoke about his past and how he became a cat guy and left the audience with the idea that we can all do more to help cats. 

The event was definitely a success and I hope that Christina plans a Cat Camp in 2018. 
Dawn




37 comments:

  1. Wow, this sounds SO awesome! I hope that if there is a Cat Camp in 2018 that my human and I can come!

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  2. So sorry I missed this. I grew up in Canarsie so looking forward to seeing that film. And your photos are just wonderful so no worries!

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  3. we keep hearing awesome reviews....we hope they continue to do this (and mom wants to come too)

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  4. Looks like a great day! I don't often find out much information on cats since my main writing focus is dogs, but I have two cats of my own, and have had many over the years since childhood. All were rescues. I'm a New Yorker so I was especially interested. Thank you for sharing all the good work going on to benefit cats!

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  5. Great post guys, we loved reading your pawesome adventure!

    Happy St Patrick's Day!

    Bestest purrs

    Basil & Co xox

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  6. That sure looked like a wonderfully fun time!

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  7. waves two ewe lexy & lola....what a grate post bye yur mom :)

    we noe her hada awesum time...and hay...lola...how kewl iz that ...jackson
    galaxy has yur name on his vest !! ☺☺☺

    happee week oh end &
    lá sona st patrick le sláinte do gach ♣♣♣

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  8. Wow! So much to see and take in! I want that cat camouflage shirt ... I don't buy a lot of cat themed items ... but that shirt is awesome! What a gift that the three of you spent time together ... three of my most admired cat advocates in one place :)

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  9. Oh Wow! Looks like you had a great time I love the cat earbud charger, so adorable! How cool that you got to meet Jackson Galaxy!

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  10. Thanks so much for doing this post! I wanted to go to this and now I'm even sorrier that I didn't. I really would have loved to hear Jackson speak and also the talk on declawing as well as hear from the rescue organizations. I also really would have enjoyed the shopping!

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  11. How special that you got to attend Cat Camp! What a great event! Thanks so much for sharing your experience and photos. Maybe next year the mom can go to this. :)

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  12. So jealous!! Love, love, love that cat tree! The whole event sounds amazing, I would have had a blast. I don't know what I would have enjoyed more - meeting fellow cat lovers, learn about the incredible souls or rescue, enjoy the discussions or try to choose between the beautiful products for sale. What am I saying...why would I have to choose?

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  13. This was a most PAWESOME recap!!!! I sooo wished I could have gone. I am blessed that I have had a tree from Pet Tree Houses for the past maybe 3 years....I ADORE IT!!!! Have heard of HoneyCat Cosmetics and look forward to reading more about them on your blog. Hoping to get to Cat Camp next year but I will be at CatCon this August, but unfortunately it isn't as intimate as Cat Camp was. Once again, FABULOUS recap! catchatwithcarenandcody

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  14. This looks like a fabulous event for cat people! I want to go to one for dogs!

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  15. What a wonderful even that must have been. It was great that it was held in your city, which makes it easier to attend. I loved your recap and felt like I was almost there. How lucky you were to meet Bob too. We've read all his books - fantastic. Great job.

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  16. Nice photos, sounds like you had a good time.

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  17. Oh wow I know my friends at Place for Couts would love to show some of their adoptables there next year!!! Let me know if there is space (and if it costs a lot for a space...)

    This is THE most brilliant thing, and so exciting, How terrific for the Cat Community!!! Thank you for your repor and all the gorgeous STUFF * sighs*

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  18. Oh,

    and we want the cat tree.....

    Definitely!!!!

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  19. OH how I wish I could have gone! And I love theme...Cat Camp! That tree! Wouldn't;t it be great of all of our kitties could have one? And a super highway...a fantasy here as I couldn't ever do it or afford someone to do it for me but oh, what a super thing when you can! Loved seeing a familiar face...Zee and Zoey's mom and meeting you via a picture with Galaxy!

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  20. What a wonderful event! We were totally scheduled out last weekend, so we were not able to attend, even though we're so close to NYC. Maybe they will have it again next year!

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  21. I would have loved to attend this event. I didn't know about either of those two films but will definitely check them out. Also, love that cat pillow and look forward to your future post about Honeycat Cosmetics. And of course, I love your picture of Jackson Galaxy and would love to hear him speak.

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  22. What a great event! Sounds like a lot of fun and terrific awareness and fund raising. Thanks for sharing about this wonderful event.
    Love & Biscuits,
    Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them

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  23. That sounds pawesome!! I really need Mama to get me that cat tree too ;)

    xoxo,
    Matilda (& Matt)

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  24. That sounds like a pawsome event ! Thank you for sharing with us ! Purrs

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  25. Wow, awesome. If I had a cat, I'd be all over it.

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  26. What a fantastic event and as a Domestic Violence Survivor whose dog was the first to be allowed into a shelter over 10 years ago, thank you for high lighting this as so many do not know that it is possible.

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  27. This is crazy cat person paradise! LOL Does NYC have cat cafe's ...?

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  28. I love how you guys are changing ideas about cats with the cafes and camps and stuff. We sorely need more awareness efforts in other parts of the country too.

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  29. This sounds like such an amazing event! How cool that it was so close to you! I hope the sessions provided helpful information and I look forward to seeing all your future posts regarding the organizations, people, cats, and vendors you had a chance to meet while you were there!

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  30. That's awesome that you got to go to Cat Camp! Very jealous. I will be going to CatConLA, but I think Cat Camp looks so cool! I love that you got to meet Jackson Galaxy.

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  31. How incredibly fun! I've been to so many dog groups, but never a full-on cat event. I think I need to!

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  32. Sounds like such a cool event. Love that it was inspiration and fundraising and fun. L'il Bub is great and so many good speakers and products etc. Have not seen a Cat Camp in Toronto but we have some cafes.

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  33. This looks like it was so much fun! I would have gone if I lived close enough. We never get any cool kitty-themed events here in Detroit. Maybe events like this will pick up around the US! That would be really pawsome.

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  34. It sounds like you had a blast!! I'm so jealous! Especially that you got to meet Lil Bub and Jackson Galaxy!!! Here's to hoping that I can get up there for next year!

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  35. What a wonderful event! I wish I could have attended. I love that cat tree!

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  36. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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