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Pets and Pilates pumps up support for Barrie SPCA

Flying Monkeys Craft Brewery hosted fundraiser Saturday; 'The whole health and wellness just really fits with the community of downtown Barrie'

People got their blood flowing Saturday morning outside of Flying Monkeys Craft Brewery.

Kelly Patterson-McGrath, a local certified pilates teacher, guided about a half-dozen people — some joined by their furry friends — in a 45-minute “gentle movement class” outside of the downtown brewery for its inaugural Pets and Pilates fundraiser for the Ontario SPCA Barrie Animal Centre.

Participants were invited to not only bring their mat, but also their pets, as well as a donation of pet food, supplies, or cash for the local animal shelter, which is located at 91 Patterson Rd.

Brewery co-owner Andrea Chiodo was one of the participants, telling BarrieToday she had never done pilates before, but was enjoying the workout.

“It’s lovely,” she said. “Plus, as soon as my legs start to burn, I have so many great things to look at, so it’s a good distraction.”

Katie Ryckman and her niece, Maddie Gomes, were among those who showed up to take part in the event. Ryckman said she had participated in similar events at the brewery in the past.

“I just love that they do the Open Air Dunlop and the street is open, and it’s for a good cause,” she said. “And I love pilates.”

The event, Chioto added, serves as a great way to bring the community together while raising items and funds for an important local organization.

“Kelly … has always been a regular supporter of the brewery and, years ago, we hosted a Pints and Pilates event. We have since outgrown the space and have too many events going on at the brewery right now and the patio is full, so we thought (with) Open Air Dunlop, we have a street open to us,” she said. “The whole health and wellness just really fits with the community of downtown Barrie.”

Given how well-known the brewery is for its dog-friendly patio, Chiodo said it made sense to tie the event in with a fundraiser for the Ontario SPCA Barrie Animal Centre.

“People have brought in gifts of toys, beds, dog food and monetary donations and we will do this for a couple of Saturdays during Open Air Dunlop,” Chiodo said.

“It’s for pets and with pets. We all bring our dogs, hang out, and socialize with people, too.”

Although a fundraising goal had not been set, every little bit helps, she added.

“Anything is great to support all of the causes (we) want to be involved with in the community.”