Cinco de Meow, a fundraiser for P.A.W.S. Animal Adoption Center, is set for Tuesday, May 6.

Playing off the traditional May 5 celebration of Mexican culture known as Cinco de Mayo, the annual daylong event encourages people to hang up their aprons and enjoy breakfast, lunch, or dinner out at any of several participating restaurants. Each restaurant will make a donation to help care for pets awaiting adoption at the Rockport-based nonprofit.

P.A.W.S. Director of Development Joelle Albury said the initiative has two purposes, “The first is to raise funds and awareness of the cats and dogs available for adoption at the center; the second is to benefit local businesses by motivating people to eat out.”

Donations play an essential role in P.A.W.S.’ efforts to house, feed, and find “forever homes” for the region’s homeless animals, said Albury. In 2013, she said, the center’s bills for veterinary care alone came to approximately $37,800.

“Since 2012, when Cinco de Meow began, the feedback from both restaurants and attendees has been overwhelmingly positive,” Albury commented. “We’ve gotten requests to expand the activity to cover our entire service area, which includes Camden, Rockport, Lincolnville, Northport, Islesboro, Belfast, Searsmont, Liberty, and Swanville.”

P.A.W.S.’ website,, has more information about Cinco de Meow, along with a sample letter that people can use to ask their favorite eateries to support the cause. Interested restaurant owners are asked to visit the website or contact Joelle Albury at 390-0935 for details; restaurants should sign up early to be included in all promotions.