The cat was out of the bag Saturday at Bourbonnais Public Library. More like eight of them.
A pop-up cat cafe took place at the library, with adoptable kittens from Kankakee County Humane Foundation. Seven were from the same litter, and one was a tad older than her shelter pals.
The first-ever event was organized by adult services supervisor Becca Maree in conjunction with KCHF.
“It’s on theme because our summer reading program is called FurBonnais,” Maree said. “We thought this would be a great opportunity to allow folks to meet some of the cats that are at the shelter and perhaps find them their forever homes.”
In the library is a themed display of animal-related reads. At the front entrance is month-long Wet Pet Food Drive to benefit Kankakee Animal Control.
The cafe ran for four hours, and patrons could sign up for 30-minute slots to visit with the kittens. Coffee and pastries were donated by the Bourbonnais Starbucks.
“This is also a wonderful opportunity to get the kittens socialized to people,” Maree pointed out.
Jordan Chapman, director of KCHF, said the litter of seven kittens arrived at the shelter in two cardboard boxes that were “completely packing-tape shut.”
The kittens now are doing well and are about 10 weeks old.
Like every other group of animals that has come through KCHF’s doors, this crew has themed names. The older female kitten was named Boone, which inspired pirate-themed names.
The kittens’ current names are: Kraken, Rum, Davy Jones, Dabloon, Tortuga, Calypso and Cannon.
Because of the condition in which they arrived, Chapman said the cats were a bit unfriendly at first. There were a total of nine in the boxes, and two were adopted before the cafe.
“Until about four days into realizing we had wet food for them everyday, they were real friendly real quick,” Chapman said.
Two of the eight cats were adopted as a result of the event. Boone was adopted by Abigail Van Kley, of Bourbonnais.
And Tortuga stole the heart of the library’s Maree, who added the cat to their family.
“My partner and I adopted the kitten who was formerly known as ‘Tortuga’ and named him ‘Boolean Radley’ to combine ‘boolean operators’ [which are used in the library science world to focus a search] with ‘Boo Radley’ from ‘To Kill a Mockingbird,’” Maree said after the event.
This is not the library’s first venture with KCHF. In the children’s section of a library is a rabbit named Sir Edmund Winterbottom, who was adopted through the foundation.