The Asbury Park nonprofit cat rescue, which announced the closure of its Cookman Avenue cat cafe in February 2021, will reopen in a warehouse at 1101 Memorial Drive at the corner of Third Avenue, with a soft opening planned for mid-February.
“I’ve been saying for a year that in a perfect world there would be a little warehouse that wanted to rent us about 2,000 square feet on Memorial somewhere and it would be really affordable,” said the founder and president of Catsbury Park, DJ Bornschein. “And it kind of came up out of the blue.
Catsbury Park will share the building with Good Boy Dog Training. The rescue works with local animal shelters and allows clients to spend time with cats available for adoption.
In the five years since it opened, Catsbury Park has found some famous friends, including pop star Kesha, who visited and boosted its mission in 2018, and internet famed feline Lil Bub, who appeared during cat conventions, rescue presented at Asbury Park and Philadelphia.
Unlike its former Cookman Avenue location, which was open from 2017 until the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in the spring of 2020, Catsbury Park’s Memorial Drive incarnation will not include a cafe.
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“At this point, we’re so respected and recognized in the cat rescue world that we don’t need to bother trying to sell people lattes and chocolate chip cookies that are costing us money. and waste our time (expenses) focused on helping cats,” Bornschein said.
However, Bornschein said he knew the cafe element was initially important in introducing the public to Catsbury Park and its mission.
“Cat cafes are quite popular now, but when we opened most people hadn’t heard of them,” he said. “We were the first in the state, in the region – so it all really helped grow Catsbury Park as a brand.”
Catsbury Park plans to hold events such as cat quizzes, cat bingo and cat yoga, with plenty of adoptable kittens on hand. There will be pop-up events starting in mid-February, followed by more regular times in March, Bornschein said.
Private tours for small groups will be available from Friday February 11 to Sunday February 13. For $100, a group of six guests (including children) can be among the first to visit Catsbury Park’s new cat lounge and spend an hour in the room full of adoptable felines. Human and cat treats are included with admission.
There are 10 reservation times available (6 p.m. to 7 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on February 11; 2 p.m. to 3 p.m., 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., 5 p.m. 7:30 p.m. on February 12 and 12-1 p.m., 1:30-2:30 p.m., 3-4 p.m. and 4:30-5:30 p.m. on February 13), which can be booked through catsburypark.com .
Alex Biese has been writing about local and national art, entertainment, culture and current affairs for over 15 years.
This article originally appeared on Asbury Park Press: Catsbury Park cat rescue finds new home in Asbury Park NJ