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Music City Animal Rescue Celebrates 10 Years of Caring in Nashville

by Rich and Laura Lynch

The Music City Animal Rescue (MCAR) hosted a celebratory fundraiser at the legendary Copperline Ranch - the former exclusive Nashville retreat of country music icon Kenny Rogers - to commemorate their 10th Anniversary on October 21, 2023.

The one time home of Kenny Rogers served as a great setting for this event.

Nestled on more than 20 acres of scenic countryside, Copperline's spacious barn provided a welcoming atmosphere for an engaging evening of live music paired with delicious food and drinks. The event was hosted by the personable Cerrito - a popular musician who has toured with Charo, recorded with two-time CMA Female Vocalist of the Year Janie Fricke and many more.

The charismatic Cerrito kept the proceeding moving right along.

MCAR founder and Director Vickie Harris was on hand to thank the volunteers for their dedicated service. On the MCAR website she states - "We wish that there was no need for our services, and we pray that someday there will be no more unwanted animals, but until that day arrives, we are strong advocates for SPAY and NEUTER of all pets. All animals adopted through MCAR will be altered prior to adoption as well as fully vetted." Also in attendance was friend to the organization Joan Greene who was instrumental in helping pull off the evening's momentous celebration.

Vickie Harris, Joan Greene, Philip Russell and Les Kerr in Nashville.

Music City Animal Rescue is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization that rescues abandoned, abused or neglected animals in and around the Middle Tennessee area. They are a foster-based network of highly dedicated individuals that care for critters in their homes while looking for furever homes. From the moment an animal comes into MCAR's program it is treated as part of the family.

Happy Anniversary Music City Animal Rescue!

First, they are socialized with humans along with other animals at the appropriate time and they are NEVER euthanized to make room for more. All of their foster parents are committed to seeing that everyone finds their purrfect place. We also learned that quite a few fosters "fail" which means that the critters are adopted by their caretakers.

Flowers were arranged to look like cats and dogs.

On Saturday we met Alan who was tending to the fire pit. He shared that the above has happened to him more than once as his wife and daughter are active members of MCAR so quite a few cats have come into their home over the years. For him, all it took was a cute kitten to show concern for him while he was recovering from surgery to be won over.

A look inside the barn at Copperline Ranch.

Prior to the concert we also had the pleasure of talking with Bethany Van Meter who recently wrote a book about her dog River called I See With My Heart! What makes River and his story so unique is that he was a rescue with infected eyes which resulted in their removal. The book is how animals with special needs can adapt and enjoy a happy life.

Jack McKeon - who knew??? This talented artist won many new fans on this night.

Bethany is an example of the kind of caring people who support MCAR. Others give generous financial donations to aid the cause. Many of their sponsors contributed items for the extensive silent auction which included artwork, food & drink baskets, packs for pets, signed items, collectibles from the band Chicago and the Tennessee Titans and much more. All the proceeds went to MCAR.

Before the main event and on the patio, Jack McKeon with his Band entertained guests. Jack is part of Nashville's new generation of bluegrass, country and folk artists. McKeon's style has been compared to John Prine and Guy Clark. His original music melds contemporary and traditional sounds and we particularly liked his song "Last Slice of Heaven" with its on-target commentary on over-development. That tune was played during their set on the main stage inside the barn.

This autographed book about an inspiring pet was one of the many silent auction items.

Philip Russell along with his talented team kicked things off with a creative take of "Margaritaville" followed by "The Joker". Philip Russell is a prolific singer-songwriter from Kingston Springs, TN. Russell is also Loretta Lynn's son-in-law. He has written hit songs for artists such as Bobby Goldsboro, Tommy Cash and Loretta Lynn. Philip with his band were spot on all night.

Cerrito joined the group to sing the George Jones classic "She Thinks I Still Care" with the twist of it being sung in both English and Spanish which is part of Cerrito's signature sound. Funny enough he is an Italian from Rhode Island who has a passion for country music. A bit later Les Kerr would engage us with his innovative style that blended bluegrass, blues, Cajun and rock. His set included a tasty tribute to southern home cooking. He also talked about seeing Kenny Rogers live in the early days when The Gambler was a hippie.

The award-winning Herrick put their ample skill on display for a good cause.

Cerrito returned to perform "Layin Low Down in Mexico" and the animated "Hot Pepper Girls" which included some audience participation. Between the music Cerrito talked about MCAR's work and thanked all the sponsors and volunteers. The last act was Herrick who are a female fronted country/soul band that boasts an impressive list of music awards. The trio's rocking set was a mix of covers and originals that included a potent take on Dolly Parton's "Joline" and a stripped-down version of Journey's "Faithfully".

Saturday's event was a celebration of caring and a fundraiser to support the mission of Music City Animal Rescue which is to rescue and rehabilitate lost, abused, or abandoned animals by providing them with food, shelter, medical care and love while finding them permanent homes. There is always a need for adoptions and/or fosters so if you are able to join MCAR as a caretaker or financial donor please visit their website.

A great night was had by all at the Copperline Ranch.

Related Links: For more information on MUSIC CITY ANIMAL RESCUE and the other organizations mentioned please visit the following links - Music City Animal Rescue | Cerrito | Jack McKeon | Herrick | Les Kerr | River Van Meter | Copperline Ranch


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