During the 25th annual Taste of Carteret Nov. 15, you can help choose the names of the four diamondback terrapins joining the Outer Banks Wildlife Shelter’s educational ambassadors, which include a screech owl, turkey vulture and leuscistic rat snake.
Taking place 6-10 p.m. Friday, Nov. 15, at the Crystal Coast Civic Center in Morehead City, tickets, $35, are available now online for the buffet-style dinner and silent auction that benefits the nonprofit animal hospital.
Attendees can also meet the ambassadors, wildlife that are permanent residents of OWLS, located on N.C. 24 between Swansboro and Morehead City, and cast their $1 votes to name the terrapins.
OWLS cares for native North Carolina wildlife that has been injured, is sick or orphaned. OWLS has an exam room, surgery, x-ray, and an intensive care unit and carries the proper permits necessary to legally care for wild animals. The shelter does not receive state or federal funding to operate the animal hospital and depends on support from the public.
During Taste of Carteret, there will be a silent auction, music with Now & Then, an open bar and a buffet featuring food donated by Carteret County restaurants, including Amos Mosquito’s Restaurant & Bar, Buffalo Wild Wings, Chick-Fil-A, Circa 81 Tapas & Cocktaileria, Class Act Catering, Clawson’s 1905 Restaurant and Pub , Fat Fellas BBQ and Grille, Crazy Lady Cakes, Floyd’s 1921, Frank’s Pizza and Subs, Longhorn Steakhouse, The Monkey Bar And Grill, Olive Garden, Roland’s Barbeque, Sagebrush Steakhouse and Smithfield’s Chicken ‘N Bar-B-Q.
Outer Banks Wildlife Shelter executive director Brooke Breen said that folks can bid on gift certificates, jewelry, handmade art items and more during the silent auction. The donations come from private donations and businesses and anyone who wants to donate food, auction items or funds can reach out to the shelter.
She said last year after Hurricane Florence they still hosted the annual dinner but barely broke even.
“We are still struggling with repairs and low donations,” she said. “We need our community like never before.”
Breen said they just found out that the state is allowing the rehabilitation of rabies vector species.
“We are trying to prepare for the whole new class of animals, including a new wing to the building,” she said. “That means we will be allowed to rehab foxes, bats, skunks and raccoons again. This is a huge step for us and we are excited to have the opportunity to serve these animals.”
Tours of the hospital are offered 2 p.m. Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays for $3 a person. Call OWLS for more details at 252-240-1200.