On her 15th birthday Aug. 12, East County resident Maria Wirries, an up-and-coming ice-skating, dancing and singing teenager, was surprised by about 20 guests at Cat Depot, where she learned a cat pod had been named in her honor — “Maria’s Manor.”
This winter, Wirries found a stray cat, Artemis, to whom she became attached. Wirries arranged to have the cat live at Cat Depot until he was adopted.
As a gift, Cat Depot volunteer Nancy Colby gave Maria a painted portrait of Artemis the stray. “Grandpa” Greg Gregory, and his wife, Ilene Friedman, hosted the party.
Those in attendance included her mother, Jeaneen Wirries; Beatrice Friedman and her aide, Samantha Craig, a Cat Depot volunteer and the family’s link to the facility; Dr. Joseph Holt, artistic director of the Gloria Musicae professional chorus with which Maria performs; her teacher and accompanist, Alan Corey; Seth Wertz, Sandra Orlando, Sue Bennett and Harold Ronson.