If you’re thinking the annual Whiskers & Paws fundraiser might be a stuffy affair, you’re clearly barking up the wrong tree. Mark Hamilton will make certain of that — and that others know it’s OK to be a bit unleashed at the gathering.

Hamilton will be the guy in the dog outfit at the Wizard of Paws event at 7 p.m. Nov. 6 at Dancin’ DJ’s Event Center at FairOaks Mall, 2380 25th St. in Columbus.

“Some people sometimes run over and want to get pictures,” Hamilton said of his canine costume that includes an oversized T-shirt for the Bartholomew County Humane Society.

“It definitely gets a laugh.”

The annual get-together generates about $2,500 for the nonprofit society that houses and finds homes for area pets.

Back in the Day band will provide classic pop-rock music. A $25 ticket includes appetizers from Blackerby’s Hangar 5 Restaurant, dessert bar, door prizes, a 50/50 raffle and a silent auction. A cash bar will be available.

Organizers said they plan to use proceeds this year for additional equipment for the society’s still-new structure at 4110 E. County Road 200S and to finish the screened-in porch for cats. The society’s Cheryl Zuckschwerdt-Ellsbury said the organization would have to substitute other fundraisers if the Whiskers and Paws event didn’t exist.

Door prizes include wine baskets, restaurant and movie gift certificates, cookware and other items. While organizers put the finishing touches on this gathering, they already are casting an eye toward events next year to promote the humane society’s 50th anniversary, Zuckschwerdt-Ellsbury said.

“We’ll plan to go all out for that,” she said.

Hamilton mentioned that he and his wife, Penny, who have three dogs that are either pit bulls or pit bull mixes, always are willing to go all out for the humane society and its mission.

“I don’t get into too many conversations in which the topic of animals doesn’t come up,” he said.

A dog-gone good time

What: Whiskers & Paws’ Wizard of Paws fundraiser for the Bartholomew County Humane Society.

When: 7 to 9 p.m. Nov. 6.

Where: Dancin’ DJs at FairOaks Mall, 2380 25th St., Columbus

Tickets: $25, available at the mall office, Viewpoint Books and the humane society.

Information: 812-372-6063 or bartholomewhumane.org.

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Brian Blair is a reporter for The Republic. He can be reached at bblair@therepublic.com or 812-379-5672.