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“Typically, a craft-beer event is only about the beer,” said Julia Pesek, Community Outreach Coordinator of the MSPCA at Nevins Farm in Methuen. “This one will help save lives.”

A fundraiser for animals of all sizes, “Tails & Ales” will take place on Saturday, July 26th from 5 to 8 p.m. under tents at Nevins Farm. Sponsored by Andover’s Shawsheen Village Liquors and Whole Foods Market in Andover, the event will feature samples of approximately three dozen New England beers from 10 breweries.

Among the local breweries are Jack’s Abby, Foolproof, Tuckerman’s, Mayflower, Harpoon, Element, Clown Shoes, Ipswich and Berkshire Brewing Company. Maine Beer, one of the hottest breweries at the moment, will also be participating.

One hundred percent of ticket sales will benefit the animals and programs of Nevins Farm. Additionally, 10 percent of any beer orders will also be donated by Shawsheen Village Liquors. 

Michael and Sheri Helman, the liquor store’s owners, were the originators of the immensely popular Hair of the Dog Wine Tasting and Art Show, an annual spring event that also benefits the MSPCA at Nevins Farm. Last year the couple decided to inaugurate this event.

“Each year as the popularity of ‘Hair of the Dog’ wine tasting grew so did the requests to add more beers,” said Ms. Helman. “So between the soaring popularity of craft beer and the requests we decided it was time create a separate festival of local craft beers.”

The Helmans, whose Hair of the Dog has raised over $100,000 for Nevins Farm, adopted their dog, Jake, from Nevins Farm over 15 years ago. And while Jake has recently crossed the rainbow bridge, his spirit is quite alive at these fundraising events

“We love making a difference in the lives of animals,” said Ms. Helman. “this year we took our new rescue dog, Hannah, to Nevins for training classes, and it still amazes me at the work they do to help a whole menagerie. Most people know they find homes for dogs and cats, but they do so much more.” 

One of only three Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals facilities in the state, the MSPCA at Nevins Farm runs an adoption service for animals, large and small, from kittens to horses. Over 7000 animals are helped each year, Ms. Pesek said. “Our facility is one of the largest open-admission centers in the state.” As an open admissions facility, the MSPCA at Nevins Farm takes in all animals, regardless of their health, breed, behavior or age, and places no time limits on how long they can stay up for adoption in the shelter.

“All services are made possible through donations, and through special events like Tails & Ales,” Ms. Pesek said. “Without the support of our community, we wouldn’t be able to run the diverse programs we offer.”

Besides the beer samplings, a delicious assortment of hors d’oeuvres will be on hand, catered by Whole Foods Market in association with local vendors, e.g., Cedar’s Mediterranean Foods, Grillo’s Pickles, Nola’s Fresh Salsa, and Grafton Cheese. And back by popular demand, you can enjoy these treats while listening to the energetic blend of rock and blues music from the White Street Band.

There are also three special raffle prizes to be drawn at the event. One is Shelton, a three-foot tall dog sculpture by Dale Rogers. A smaller version of the one located on Route 495, it was donated to the cause by the Helmans.  “Shelton represents the spirit of every dog who needs a good home,” said Ms. Helman. On the night of Tails & Ales, he will find one.

The second special raffle prize is a getaway to the North Conway area. It includes a two-night stay at The Notchland Inn in Hart’s Location, New Hampshire, which is listed among the most romantic inns in North America. The owners, Les Schoof and Ed Butler, own Bernese Mountain Dogs and are very active in their local humane society. Included with this stay is a private tour of Tuckerman’s Brewing Company in North Conway.

The third lucky raffle prize winner will enjoy a fabulous beer lover’s kit, which will include treats and tools that every beer aficionado needs to call his own.