A unique partnership between a car dealership and area rescue groups is good news for animals looking for forever homes.

Phoenix Animal Care Coalition (PACC911) will host an adopt-a-thon at Earnhardt Ford on Saturday, Feb. 23.

The two have been teaming up for pet adoption events since 2009. In six events 247 pets have been adopted. This weekend more than 50 rescue groups will come together under the tent at Earnhardt Ford in an attempt to find homes for at least 60 more animals.

“One of the missions of PACC was to put on big adoption events,” said Bari Mears, president and founder of PACC. “We wanted to bring the rescue community together and allow them to showcase the animals in their care who otherwise would not be seen by the public. A lot of people don’t even know these groups exist. It allows everyone in the rescue community and the animals the best chance of adoption to have these big adoption events.”

There will be a DJ playing music and volunteers will be selling Grimaldi’s pizza by the slice to benefit the emergency medical fund, which provides financial aid to Valley nonprofits needing assistance. The real draw of the event will be the many animals looking for a home.

“There are dogs, cats, puppies, kittens, bunny rescue, even rat rescue,” Mears said. “Every animal has a story. This is one of the wonderful things about rescuing. A lot of the rescue groups are foster-home based. The animal lives in a home and is sometimes there for weeks or longer so the family can tell you exactly what the animal is like. In so many cases the pets have a good history with a family and you are getting a good animal that you can count on for certain behaviors.”

Many of the groups at the event do same-day adoptions while others may have a more stringent process. Still, Mears estimates that all animals adopted on the 23rd will be able to go home with their new owners within a week.

The Earnhardts are all animal lovers, said Vicky Van Dyke, marketing director at Earnhardt Ford. This event is a large community service they’re happy to host.

“Earnhardt Ford has always been in the business of going further for our community,” said Mark Witthar, Phoenix regional manager for Ford Motor Company. “This has been the case ever since Tex Earnhardt became, at age 21, the youngest Ford dealer in the country when he first opened Earnhardt Ford in Chandler back in 1951. His love for animals has spanned decades and it’s evident in the partnership his dealership has with PACC911.”

Saturday’s event will be from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Earnhardt Ford dealership in Chandler right across Interstate 10 from Ahwatukee, 7300 W. Orchid Lane. All animals are spayed or neutered and recent on all vaccines. Cost of adoptions will vary by the groups. Admission is free. For more information, call PACC911 at (602) 992-4779.

• Contact writer: (480) 898-7914 or ahurtado@ahwatukee.com

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