shelter Gives Back: Rocky Mountain Raptor Program

Rocky Mountain Raptor Program LogoI’ve always been fascinated by raptors. I grew up in an area heavily populated with bald eagles, and despite seeing them hundreds of times over the years, my sense of awe never went away.

Currently, there’s a red-tail hawk that I see regularly out on my daily walks with the dog. He no longer flies away when we walk beneath his giant cottonwood, but rather watches us closely should we try anything tricky.

I was first introduced to the Rocky Mountain Raptor Program  more than a decade ago at the  Colorado  Renaissance  Festival in Larkspur. Since learning about them at the festival, I have visited the facility twice and have written several freelance articles about the program.

Golden Eagle FB

Click on this photo of a Golden Eagle to head over to the RMRP's Facebook page!

I’m happy to announce that the Rocky Mountain Raptor Program  (RMRP) is the April 2012 recipient of free ad space on HeidiTown through my Gives Back Campaign.

The RMRP is located in Fort Collins, but they service approximately 100,000 square miles, an area about the size of the state of Colorado. They take in raptors from north of Longmont, well into Wyoming and all along the northeastern plains.

RMRP averages about one admission and several injured raptor calls each day, and more than 70% of treatable raptors are released for A Second Chance At Freedom. Several days each week they provide education programs somewhere in the region.

The program started in 1979, as a student club rehabilitating injured raptors. It has grown to seven staff members and 200 volunteers who put in thousands of hours each year. On average they take in 275 birds every year, although some year the number is much, much higher.

I would encourage you to visit the Rocky Mountain Raptor Program online at and browse this comprehensive site. Learn about the educational programs they offer and when and where you can meet their birds. I believe in what they do at RMRP, and hope that you will check them out. Give Back: Longhopes Donkey Shelter

Longhopes logoThe Gives Back campaign kicked off last month. Throughout the year, one Colorado-based nonprofit of my choosing will receive free HeidiTown ad space for one month. On the first Monday of each month, I highlight the chosen nonprofit.

This month’s recipient of the Gives Back campaign is Longhopes Donkey Shelter.

Few animals have a more persistent stereotype than donkeys. They are portrayed as stubborn and generally obnoxious, but this isn’t exactly true. Donkeys are also often considered to be just a different sort of horse, and this couldn’t be further from the truth. The donkeys I have met have personalities closer to dogs than horses.

Christine & baby donkey

Christine & a baby donkey. Who knew donkeys liked hugs?

I met the owner of Longhopes Donkey Shelter, Kathy Dean, several years ago at Burro Days  in Fairplay, Colorado.  Just last month, I finally had the chance to visit the shelter, located in Bennett, Colorado.

My giving circle, People With Compassion with Pets, had voted to “adopt” one of the donkeys at Longhopes, just $300/year. Donkeys are fairly inexpensive animals, and the $300 provides care and food for one donkey for year.

My friend, Christine, and I got to tour the facility and meet all the donkeys. Some were small, some were big, some were shy, but most were very outgoing, nudging us for attention.

There are lots of people in Colorado, who are great candidates for donkey ownership. You need at least two or more acres of land and a small, sturdy shelter. Donkeys are very social and often bonded, so Longhopes only adopts them out in pairs. The adoption fee for a pair is $550, and this includes spay/neuter and vaccinations.

Donkey nose

Photo by H.M. Kerr-Schlaefer, all rights reserved. Photos by H. M. Kerr-Schlaefer, all rights reserved.

Learn more about Longhopes Donkey Shelter and see all their adoptable donkeys at A tour of the Bennett facility must be prearranged. Longhopes also has an active Facebook page where new photos are frequently posted. While cash donations are welcome anytime, the shelter is always in need of hay and farm supplies.

I recently wrote a full article about Longhopes Donkey Shelter in a local newspaper. If you’d like, you can read it here.


Win tickets to Fall Harvest Brewfest, annual fundraiser for Animal House

Fall Harvest Brewfest 2011 logoI am dog person. I can’t imagine coming home to a house without having an excited canine there to greet me.   While some people ooh and aww over babies, I’m the person who will get overly excited about a new puppy or newly adopted dog. Let’s face it, dogs are awesome and many of us couldn’t live without ours.

That being said, this week’s give away is a pair of tickets to Fall Harvest Brewfest, the annual fundraiser for Animal House, a no-kill dog shelter in Fort Collins, Colorado. Animal House specializes in second chances. They obtain dogs from other shelters; dogs that have been slated for euthanasia.

This is the 3rd Annual Fall Harvest Brewfest and it’s being held at Drake Center in Fort Collins on October 15, 2011. There will be over 20 craft breweries in attendance as well as several micro-distilleries (including my personal favorite, Dancing Pines Distillery, in Loveland).   To satisfy your growling tummy, there will be craft-beer inspired food pairings served throughout the evening.

Draco from Animal House

Draco is a 3-yr-old shepherd mix looking for his forever home. Learn more at

So here’s the deal folks, enter to win a pair of tickets to Fall Harvest Brewfest here by telling me your best dog tale. I know it’s a little work, but it can be simple. For example, our German Shepherd likes to talk to the cat.   Here’s another, when our German Shepherd pees in snow she covers it up – true story! We have no idea why she does this, but we find it highly amusing.

I will pick a winner sometimes on Friday afternoon (October 7, 2011) – we have guests coming to town, so I can’t give you a specific time, because I won’t stick with it.   Just be sure to have your entry in by noon on Friday.

If you don’t win, I encourage you to buy a ticket to this event. Tickets can be purchased at Tickets are $35 and include your night of fun and the warm fuzzy feeling that you drank for a great cause.   You can also join the Fall Harvest Brewfest and the Animal House on Facebook.


It’s a HeidiTown giveaway – drink for a good cause

Today’s HeidiTown contest is courtesy of Dancing Pines Distillery. This brand new distillery in Loveland is giving away two tickets to Fall Harvest Brewfest, the annual fundraiser for Animal House Rescue in Fort Collins.

Fall Harvest Brewfest is a celebration of good drink from local breweries and Dancing Pines Distillery. It will raise much-needed funds for Animal House, one of only two non-kill shelters in Northern Colorado. The event is this Saturday, October 2 at The Drake Center in Fort Collins.

Read all about the brewfest by clicking here.

Dancing Pines Distillery is located at 1527 Taurus Court in Loveland. Photo by H.M. Kerr-Schlaefer

Dancing Pines is a small, family-run distillery that opened this summer in Loveland, Colorado. October hours are 4-7 p.m. every Friday evening. They are located at 1527 Taurus Court. Stop in to try or buy their espresso liqueur, chai liqueur, rum, or whatever else they’ve recently distilled in their imported copper still. Dancing Pines products will be available in liquor stores on October 8, 2010.

Visit Dancing Pines on Facebook.

ENTER TO WIN two tickets to Fall Harvest Brewfest by leaving a comment here telling the Mayor you’d like to be a winner! The winner will be chosen at random at 9 a.m. on Thursday, Sept. 30, and will be contacted via email.

To purchase tickets to Fall Harvest Brewfest visit

*You must be 21 or older to be eligible to win this prize.








Summer 2016 –  Featured Nonprofit

National Mill Dog Rescue

Featured Festival:

Subscribe to!
Latest Pins on Pinterest
  • Follow Me on Pinterest