PITTSBURG — Some fly, others hop and a few walk really slow.
Sweet Designs Cakery will donate a portion of sales from cupcake purchase to PSU Nature Reach to help feed the animal ambassadors, which costs the program $10,000 a year to feed.
Since 1985, Nature Reach has used live animals to provide natural history and environmental education outreach programming to school and community groups, a release from Pittsburg State University said. It is funded by program fees, grants, and private donations from the community.
“Our animal ambassadors touch the lives of several thousand children, teachers, and community members every year,” said Delia Lister, director of the program, which is housed in the PSU Biology Department.  
Until Friday at the cakery, customers may donate $1 for a ticket to vote for their favorite Nature Reach Ambassador: An Ornate Box Turtle named Amelia, a Virginia Opossum named Matilda, an American Toad named Mr. Toad, or an Eastern Screech Owl named Renny.
Block22 is also collaborating to help raise funds by hosting an open house from 3:30 to 5 p.m. on Friday. The open house will be in Block22's co-working space inside The Foundry, right next door to Root Coffeehouse & Creperie. People are welcomed to stop by and say hello to the animals.
During that time, Lister will draw a winner’s name out of each animal’s box and winners will receive a Sweet Designs gift card good for a dozen cupcakes, a coupon good for a mini cake decorated with the winner’s favorite animal and a $5 gift card to Root Coffeehouse & Creperie, according to the release.
“I know fundraising is hard for community education programs out there, whatever we can do to help even if it’s a little bit,” Sweet Designs co-owner Heather Horton said.
— Stephanie Potter is a staff writer at the Morning Sun. She can be emailed at spotter@morningsun.net or follow her on Twitter @PittStephP and Instagram @stephanie_morningsun.