Alaqua Animal Refuge Receives Special Donations from Alys Beach

Eleventh Edition The Alys Foundation
Alaqua Animal Refuge Receives Special Donations from Alys Beach
Alys Beach is honored to play a role in helping Alaqua expedite the transition to the new campus with the donation of the Perch, Piper’s Kitchen, and Bike Shop buildings.

Beloved Alys Beach temporary buildings serve a new purpose.

The Perch, Piper’s Kitchen and The Bike Shop’s temporary structures within the community of Alys Beach have been removed and gifted to Alaqua Animal Refuge to be repurposed for their new facility. Within the Walton County community and beyond, Alaqua’s impact on animal welfare is highly regarded. The Southeast’s premier 501(c)3 refuge, Alaqua provides a second chance for abused, neglected and homeless animals, and has become recognized as a leader in animal rescue, welfare, cruelty prevention, and advocacy since its inception in 2007. Alaqua’s mission is to advocate for animals, provide them with safety, care, and shelter, and to foster the connection between humans and animals to create a kinder, more empathetic world for all living souls.

In 2020, as Alaqua worked to transition to a new location on 100 acres of donated land, the original campus suffered significant damages from Hurricane Sally, greatly impacting their ability to care for the animals in need of their services. Much of their existing infrastructure was rendered unsalvageable, and their needs for the new facility were suddenly more immediate.

Alys Beach is honored to play a role in helping Alaqua expedite the transition to the new campus with the donation of the Perch, Piper’s Kitchen, and Bike Shop buildings. With development well underway, the goal of the Refuge is to provide state-of-the-art facilities for animal care and sanctuary, and to expand opportunities for community engagement, promoting the healing power of animals on the human spirit.

The Perch, which was constructed as a placeholder for the exquisite and thoughtfully constructed homeowner-exclusive Beach Club at Alys Beach, was also heavily damaged by Hurricane Sally. Though restored, it was subsequently damaged beyond repair in early 2021 when a sudden, destructive storm came ashore, shifting the Perch frame and setting the structure on an angle. With the Perch deemed unsafe and irreparable, removal became imminent, and a salvage exploration brought forth the opportunity to donate the canopy roof to the new Alaqua facility, where it will be used for a stage in the amphitheater area for special concerts and fundraising events. The Perch, a simple, canopied veranda overlooking the Gulf, was a beloved gathering spot for our homeowners’ sundowners and casual celebrations, and we are grateful that it will be able to serve a new purpose at Alaqua.

Piper’s Kitchen (now Beach Food & Beverage Delivery Service) and The Bike Shop also operated out of temporary units before moving operations into the new Beach Club campus this spring. Placed picturesquely together around a courtyard, the former Piper’s Kitchen and The Bike Shop buildings are now poised to offer solutions for some of Alaqua’s special needs, providing separate areas for nursery facilities and space for a new cat café component created to bolster the Refuge’s socialization and adoption efforts.

While it has been sad to see the removal of these early Alys Beach places, places where milestones were celebrated and memories made, we are warmed by the repurposing of these Piper’s, Bike Shop and Perch structures for such a worthwhile cause as the Alaqua Animal Refuge. We look forward to the coming events at the Refuge as opportunities to rally around Alaqua, provide the additional support they need, and celebrate this heartfelt contribution to their facilities.


*Note: Images courtesy of Alaqua Animal Refuge and Alys Beach Marketing.

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