Eatontown, NJ – The Monmouth County SPCA held their 2021 Fur Ball Gala on the first Friday in October at the Molly Pitcher Inn in Red Bank. The sold-out, outdoor event brought together 300 of the shelter’s supporters and friends to celebrate 75 years of existence as the Monmouth County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

Monmouth County SPCA leadership welcomed special guest, Ursula Goetz, who for two decades, lead the organization towards its present-day success by means of policy changes for shelter animals, a capital campaign for a major renovation and the establishment of the Vogel Spay/Neuter Clinic.

MCSPCA Executive Director, Ross Licitra Former MCSPCA Executive Director, Ursula Goetz MCSPCA Associate Executive Director Barbara Lovell.  Credit: Victor Bubadias Photography
MCSPCA Executive Director, Ross Licitra Former MCSPCA Executive Director, Ursula Goetz MCSPCA Associate Executive Director Barbara Lovell. Credit: Victor Bubadias Photography

This year’s theme celebrated the organization’s 75th anniversary and featured an entire history exhibit with photos, news clippings, videos and literature dating back to 1945. To pay tribute to the 1940’s decade, the tremendous sounds of Sandy Sasso’s Swingin’ Big Band filled the tented promenade and filtered out to the Navesink River throughout the evening. Many of the event’s guests dressed in their best 1940’s attire while table decor included big band sheet music, brass instruments, vinyl records and freshly cut floral arrangements.

The highlights of the evening’s program were the puppies and dogs in attendance who had all been rescued and given a second chance by the Monmouth County SPCA. Chaplain Matty Guiliano lead a spirited pledge program encouraging guests to donate to the shelter’s lifesaving programs and helped raise over $45,000. Other fundraising components of the event included the live and silent auctions with carefully curated items and experiences, and the 50/50 raffle with a total of over $23,000, where a lucky resident of Millstone won over $11,000. The success of the event would not have been possible without the support of our 75th Anniversary Sponsors, The Hesse Companies, Fran & Paul Turner, Kaseya and the Cooper Voccola Family Foundation. The Monmouth County SPCA would also like to thank the event co-chairs, Andrew & Allison Grossman and Christian & Monica Peter. For a full list of sponsors, please visit the event website (

Executive Director of the Monmouth County SPCA, Ross Licitra adds, “I am so proud of this organization and how far we’ve come in our 75 years of existence. From a small, modest brick building, to a 21st century, state-of-the-art campus, the Monmouth County SPCA has evolved to be the beacon for all things animal welfare in the state of New Jersey and beyond. I can’t thank Ursula and the hundreds of other people who have paved the way for our success enough. We will continue to advocate, protect and create happy lives for all animals that come to us – today, tomorrow and for the next 75 years!”

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Jackson Pines and Cranston Dean in residency at Langosta Lounge in Asbury Park
Jackson Pines and Cranston Dean at Langosta

With the success of the Fur Ball under their collar, the Monmouth County SPCA will now be focusing on their first-annual Doggy Paddle Polar Plunge on Saturday, November 27th at D’jais in Belmar. Info for the Polar Plunge can be found here (  For questions about upcoming events, or how to get involved, please email [email protected] or call 732-440-1548.

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