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Algonquin Cat To Host Fashion Show & Fundraiser For Local Animal Rescue

By Susan Richard

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) Some fabulous felines take to the catwalk to benefit their fellow furries in need of homes.

Manhattan's Algonquin Hotel hosts its Annual Celebration & Cat Fashion Show on Thursday, August 3rd from 5:00 to 7:30 p.m.

The Algonquin, which is known for the legendary Dorothy Parker and the Algonquin Round Table, is also home to the famed Algonquin Cat. For years it was believed that the hotel had a feline mascot since the 1930s, when a stray named Rusty wandered in. However, the hotel recently discovered the origins date back even further, to the late 1920s.

matilda at algonquin
Algonquin Cat Matilda III hard at work. (Photo Credit: Algonquin Hotel/Facebook Page)

After the Algonquin acquired an out-of-print book written by the hotel's first general manager, Frank Case, a chapter was discovered about a cat named Billy. According to the account, the cat later named Rusty appeared two days after Billy passed. Actor John Barrymore was a resident at the time, and Rusty was renamed Hamlet in his honor. (Hamlet is said to have been Barrymore's greatest stage role.)

Hamlet, the first official Algonquin Cat (Photo Credit: Algonquin Hotel/Facebook Page)

The Algonquin has had a total of 11 cats, including Billy. The lineage includes seven Hamlets and three Matildas, all of whom have been rescues. The current Matilda began her residence in December of 2010. "She was left in a box outside the North Shore Animal League", the Algonquin's Alice de Almeida told 1010 WINS, "so it's very important for everyone to realize how many "kids" are out there that need forever homes."

This year's party will feature eight fancy felines strutting their stuff in one-of-a-kind outfits designed by animal fashion designer Ada Nieves along with a performance from cast members from the Broadway show CATS.

Tickets are $60 with 100% of the proceeds benefiting the Mayor's Alliance for NYC's Animals. The event aims to raise $10,000 for the Mayor's Alliance, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with the goal of transforming New York into a no-kill city through several primary initiatives: the Wheels of Hope program, NYC Feral Cat Initiative and Adoptapalooza mega adoption events.

ALGONQUIN CAT fashion show
Algonquin Cat Fashion Show Models (Photo Credit: Algonquin Hotel/Facebook Page)

An on-site mobile adoption unit will be in front of the hotel from 3:00 to 7:00 p.m. with available cats from Mayor's Alliance partner Linda's Cat Assistance.

For additional information, to purchase tickets, or to bid on Silent Auction items, click HERE.

The Algonquin Hotel is located at 59 W 44th Street, New York, New York 10036.  Matilda can also be found found on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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