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Kitten Yoga, Catstravaganza coming up this weekend in Lawrence

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The projected forecast for cuteness this weekend is high. 

Two kitten-centered events are scheduled to connect with and benefit the Lawrence Humane Society: Catstravaganza and Kitten Yoga. 

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As part of its Art For All series, the Lawrence Arts Center is hosting Catstravaganza from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 17 at 940 New Hampshire St. It’s free to attend. 

Participants can learn how to draw a cat with a visual tutorial, stay for storytime with the lead actress for the Arts Center’s upcoming “Fancy Nancy” production, and play with a couple of adoptable kittens from the Humane Society. 

“Basically it’s a self-guided art-for-all table and it gives you instructions on how to draw your own cute little cat, and we have magnetic boards where everyone has been posting their drawings of their cats all month long,” said Amanda Roberts, director of marketing and communications for the Arts Center. “… We are really excited that our Fancy Nancy is going to make an appearance and read some story books during the Catstravaganza event.”

Catstravaganza is a modified version of the Arts Center’s Kitty City, which featured adoptable kittens staying in a “city” built just for them for a couple of weeks last year. 

The Arts Center has historically been supportive of the Humane Society, said Elina Alterman, the Humane Society’s director of development and communications. 

“We love the Arts Center,” Alterman said. “We have a great partnership with them. We loved doing Kitty City last year. … So we just are always happy to get any kind of invitation from them.”

With things changing day to day, Alterman doesn’t know how many kittens will be at Catstravaganza. 

“I’m sure I will have some kittens there — my goal is to have at least three,” she said. “I’ll have some information for folks about fostering, adopting, and volunteering.” 

Keeping the cuteness quotient high, the Humane Society is also hosting another one of its kitten yoga sessions. 

Kitten Yoga is one of the Humane Society’s most popular and beloved fundraisers, Alterman said. During kitten season — the warm months — there is usually a kitten yoga session monthly. 

“The energy is always elevated,” said Monica Steinbach, Genesis Health Club exercise manager, who oversees the event. “There’s something relaxing about scratching some kitten who’s looking into your face as you’re also getting into a relaxing pose, because (you’re) still practicing yoga.” 

The kittens themselves do their own thing: paw the mat, climb the participants, nap in a patch of sunlight. 

“Some members even just stop the pose and they’ll just sit with the kitten and they’re just making, you know, that small connection in the moment,” Steinbach said. “And I think, yeah, everybody leaves a little bit more lifted, even if it didn’t necessarily work out for them to adopt a kitten.

“I think there’s a sense of just giving to the community by showing up and practicing yoga and registering to support the Humane Society.”

Kitten Yoga, which costs $25, is at 9 and 11 a.m. on Sunday, Sept. 18 at McCarthy Subaru of Lawrence, 2101 W. 29th Terrace. Registration is available at this link

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Chansi Long (she/her), Lawrence life reporter, can be reached at clong (at) lawrencekstimes (dot) com. Read more of her work for the Times here. Check out her staff bio here.

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