Family-friendly Howl-O-Ween Wildlife Fundraiser to raise funds for SWFL wildlife

By Tony Coppolino, general manager for Matanzas on the Bay

Mina, the Great horned owl

We’re fortunate enough to live in a region as beautiful as Southwest Florida, and our native wildlife is a big part of what makes this area such a special place to live and visit. Protecting and caring for these beloved creatures is crucial so that we can enjoy their presence for years to come.

That’s why Matanzas on the Bay on Fort Myers Beach is partnering with the Clinic for the Rehabilitation of Wildlife (CROW) to host a family-friendly, Halloween and animal-themed fundraiser on Saturday, Oct. 26.

Featuring great music, mouthwatering food, and fun activities, the CROW Howl-O-Ween Wildlife Fundraiser offers a day of fun for all ages.

Children can have their faces painted by animal artists and participate in pumpkin painting, fun games and animal-themed arts and crafts activities.

GiGi, the Virginia opossum

CROW’s wildlife experts will also lead interactive, educational sessions exploring Florida’s fascinating animal residents. You’ll even have a chance to meet some of the clinic’s engaging and lovable wildlife ambassadors, like Lola, the American kestrel, or GiGi, the Virginia opossum!

In addition to live music by talented guitarist and singer Scotty Bryan, guests can also enjoy a $14 buffet featuring some of Matanzas on the Bay’s most popular dishes, including ribs, bacon-wrapped shrimp, pizza, corn on the cob, potato salad and pineapple coleslaw. Craft beer from Fort Myers Brewing Company will also be available for purchase.

Morgan Hester, CROW wildlife rehabilitator, with Animal Ambassador Talon, a red-tailed hawk

Most importantly, proceeds from the Howl-O-Ween Wildlife Fundraiser will help CROW continue to operate its teaching hospital to save the sick, injured and orphaned native and migratory wildlife of Southwest Florida and beyond. We’ll also have a selection of raffle drawings and will be collecting direct donations for CROW throughout the event.

Through veterinary care, public education programs and its visitor center, CROW works to improve the health of the environment, humans and animals through wildlife medicine. This year alone, the nonprofit clinic has served more than 4,300 wildlife patients.

CROW’s efforts also help Southwest Florida remain a must-see destination for locals and visitors to enjoy magnificent native wildlife.

We hope you will join us in supporting CROW at our Howl-O-Ween Wildlife Fundraiser on Saturday, Oct. 26. Festivities will take place from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Matanzas on the Bay, 416 Crescent St. on Fort Myers Beach.

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About the Author

Tony Coppolino is the general manager of Matanzas on the Bay. A staple of the Fort Myers Beach community since its doors opened in 1984, Matanzas on the Bay is best known for its fresh seafood, lively atmosphere and stunning waterfront views. Open daily from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., the restaurant is located at 416 Crescent St. on Fort Myers Beach. To learn more about Matanzas on the Bay and its offerings, visit www.MatanzasOnTheBay.com or call 239-463-3838.