Meow Lounge And What Its All About
By: Noah Pinkham- Staff Writer
On October 7th, my girlfriend Camdyn and I took a trip to Meow Lounge, located on 630 Main Street, in Westbrook. Meow Lounge is many things at once, being both a foster home for cats from local animal shelters, and a gift shop containing cat themed goods from local artists and artisans. However, contrary to the misconceptions that Meow Lounge is a “Cat Cafe”, they’re not due to Maine state law and licensing issues, but they offer pre packaged goods, a drink cooler, and free tea along with hot chocolate. In addition, you’re welcome to bring in outside food.
They’re a for-profit organization run by Anne Beal, but the cats are housed for free on behalf of the animal shelters, and they primarily make money from ticket sales to see the cats, and retail sales from within the giftshop. Meow Lounge is open every day but Monday, with many time slots being available for flexible bookings. Time slots are available, and discounted for students at rates of 25 minutes costing $6. 50 minutes costing $12.20 hours costing $21.50, and a 3 hour study session costing $25. Prices for regular customers are generally 20% more than the discounted student rate. They also offer month and day passes, along with special events every week, ranging from a “Queer Craft and Cat Night”, to a “Taylor Swift Listening Party”. Another event that will be a ton of fun is a Halloween costume party at 5 O’clock in the evening, on Halloween. There will be cats in adorable costumes, and a costume contest to boot. On top of all that, Meow Lounge also offers discounts to students, teachers, seniors, and children.
My experience at the cat lounge was honestly very relaxing, and super fun. Personally, I’m a huge cat person, but Camdyn is kinda afraid of them. Despite that, within the “Free-Library” reading corner, she found a buddy in the cuddly old soul of a cat named Matcha. Matcha was the perfect kind of cat for Camdyn because she’s afraid of the frisky kinds that tend to playfully bite or scratch. My absolute favorite cat that I met there was Expedition Everest, a cute gray sort of tabby, with a bit of chub and a smile plastered on his face. He’s super playful, so he greeted me with a headbutt, gave my nose a couple licks, and then gave my schnoz a nibble. He also really enjoyed being pat, which I think is something everyone can appreciate in a feline friend.
While I was visiting, they had 12 cats, but Anne told me they aim to have 14. The cats get adopted so often that the foster home won’t always be at capacity. In fact, as of the time I visited, and since Meow Lounge’s July 1st opening of this year, Meow Lounge has been responsible for the adoption of 59 cats, which makes for an impressive rate of about 0.6 cats adopted per day! Another impressive thing about Meow Lounge is you can really tell how much love and care the cats that live there receive. They’re all so sweet, friendly, and remarkably cuddly. One of those friendly cats named Goggles came right up to my lap, curled up, and had a cat nap. Another loveable feline was Leo, he’s white and orange with the kind of chubby face that I find so endearing. Towards the end of our visit while saying our goodbyes to the cats, a man brought his lunch in, but to nobody’s surprise the kitties were all surrounding him hoping for a bite of his delicious sandwich.
Meow Lounge was a lot of fun and such a treat to experience, and it was so nice to meet Anne Beal. The different goods offered in the gift shop were really unique and interesting to see, especially the cat themed t-shirts. The lounge room where the cats stay had nice decor, and a little bit featuring James Dean, who Anne said she’s a fan of. Again, the cats were very sweet, loving, and deserving of being adopted by someone who vibes with them. I definitely recommend stopping by if you want a kitty of your own, or simply love spending time with cats.