Shillelagh Club gives back to community

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WEST ORANGE, NJ — The West Orange Shillelagh Club ended a weeklong fundraiser, during which it raised $1,000 for Paws Animal Rescue as a participant in Negroni Week, a national fundraising effort in which bars sell Campari-based drinks and donate portions of the proceeds to charities. The Shillelagh Club’s “A Drink for Your Paws” event sent funds to Paws, an animal rescue organization in Montclair that rescues, shelters and adopts out abandoned cats and dogs in Essex County.

“Paws animal rescue is an important part of our community,” Caitlin O’Keeffe, the Shillelagh Club bar manager, said in an email to the West Orange Chronicle on June 11. “They operate on a purely volunteer basis and rely on support from local businesses and families, which we tried to bring together. It’s important to be working for a greater cause. We are fortunate to have skills and assets to share with the community.”

One June 3, the Shillelagh Club kicked off the event with live entertainment and jewelry sales from Gems by Jensen, which also donated proceeds to Paws.

“The drink sales continued all week and were supported heavily by our customers and groups like Shillelagh Pipe and Drums, Emeralds, and Women of Irish Heritage, who use our facilities to host their meetings and gatherings,” O’Keeffe said. “The campaign ran from June 3 through June 10, and generated $1,000 in total.”

According to O’Keeffe, the Shillelagh Club’s fundraising efforts did not end with the Paws donations. A larger scale event is planned for Saturday, Sept. 15, when volunteers can shave their heads to raise money for St. Baldrick’s Foundation, which funds research for childhood cancer.

“Participants would get donations to shave their heads and all proceeds are donated to childhood cancer patients,” she said. “That yearly fundraiser is closing in on its million dollar mark, in the next year or so.”

Animal rescue efforts will also remain on the Shillelagh Club’s calendar in September.

“Similar to our Paws event, but on a much larger scale, we have an event called ‘Luck of the Pup’ on Sept. 29,” O’Keeffe said. “And that will generate money to support five different local animal shelters. Last year they got 11 dogs rescued at the inaugural event.”

Photos Courtesy of Caitlin O’Keeffe